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Is Colorado Worth It?

FAQ and threads for those just starting to hike the Colorado 14ers.
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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby SkiBum1287 » Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:01 am

Ahh, time to resurrect an old thread...

I've just been presented with the opportunity to work in one of three places after graduation (well, four really, but I didn't really consider Dickinson, ND): Brighton, CO; Vernal, UT; or Rock Springs, WY. I again seek the great advice of all you seasoned veterans, and maybe @Scott P for his Western CO, Eastern UT perspective on outdoor possibilities. What I like about them...

Brighton - Close to DIA, still in CO (which the longer I'm here, the more I like), familiar territory, moderate temperatures (relatively).
Vernal - Something new, somewhat near Wasatch and all their great snow, low cost of living, DNM in my backyard.
Rock Springs - 100 miles south of the Wind Rivers?

Thanks in advance!

Oh, and it's the same job and company in all three, with Rock Springs having the best training center
Snow!

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby Tjohn67238 » Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:46 am

SkiBum, I have the opposite situation. My mom and sister & her family moved to CO quite a few yrs ago and I still live in IL. (It’s too late for me to make that move now, I’m married 27+ years, we’re established here, my wife would never agree to it anyway!) But with my family members living here, it gives me a perfect excuse to come out here every summer, visit them and conveniently hike a mountain or two while I’m here! So I get to enjoy making the most of that situation. In your case, you still have the freedom to make that move if you choose to and it sounds like you’re giving things careful consideration. Make the choice that works best for you!

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby Oman » Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:59 am

I think some on this board live in Brighton, so they can speak to that. It's a suburb of Denver that would be a lot different than the other two places you're considering.

I've been through Vernal several times. The first time I was meeting a biologist, who, before even shaking hands, asked one question of me: "Are you Mormon?" When I told him I was not, he insisted that we conduct the rest of the interview at the one restaurant in town that served beer. He told me Vernal wasn't an easy place for a non-LDS person to live. Maybe the energy boom has changed that in the years since. There is great fishing on the Green River below Flaming Gorge Dam and terrific hikes and mountain biking in Dinosaur NM. Browns Park is the only place I've ever seen moose, elk, deer, and pronghorn all in the same day.

Rock Springs -- first time I heard of it was when the sheriff shot and killed one of his own officers outside a bar. I've been there probably a dozen times over the years, and it never looks the same -- classic hardscrabble energy boom-and-bust place that, depending on the economy, either has a million vacant homes / stores or such a brutal housing shortage that $50,000 a year energy workers are living in cars. It's a couple hours to Pinedale and the Wind River Range, which is spectacular, and just up the road from Flaming Gorge for flatwater fishing. If you like fiction short stories, read Richard Ford's Rock Springs. Rock Springs feels a lot bigger than Vernal but also more transient.

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby bif » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:07 am

Well I used to live in Fort Lauderdale Florida. If I wanted to go to Paris, Denver or anywhere it was a 10 minute ride to the international airport and I was on my way.. I moved to middle of nowhere Pennsylvania, now if I want to go anywhere I have to usually drive to Washington D C , or Pittsburgh to catch a flight. This adds on an additional 4 hours each way, which is something I never imagined when I considered a place in the country.

My next move I will try to live close to an international airport.

bif

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby SuperPolok » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:07 am

Hmmmm....all those places are hotbeds of oil/gas service companies. So I'm assuming you got a job offer from Schlumberger or Halliburton? I'd personally stay the heck out of Rock Springs. I worked up there for a summer and didn't like it at all. Vernal as noted is a bit of a different place due to the high % of Mormons but not too bad and Grand Junction is only a 3 hour drive to somewhat normalcy. Brighton is a suburb so though it's in the "uglier" part of the Front Range (in my opinion) you're essentially still living in Denver. Just my two cents.

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby SkiBum1287 » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:20 am

SuperPolok wrote:Hmmmm....all those places are hotbeds of oil/gas service companies. So I'm assuming you got a job offer from Schlumberger or Halliburton? I'd personally stay the heck out of Rock Springs. I worked up there for a summer and didn't like it at all. Vernal as noted is a bit of a different place due to the high % of Mormons but not too bad and Grand Junction is only a 3 hour drive to somewhat normalcy. Brighton is a suburb so though it's in the "uglier" part of the Front Range (in my opinion) you're essentially still living in Denver. Just my two cents.


Yes, oil/gas hotbed. The offer is from BJ Services (insert joke here). I still have a few more interviews with some other companies (Schlumberger and Halliburton included), but so far this is the only offer.

bif, That's exactly what I was thinking about the airports.

Oman, Thanks for the heads up on Rock Springs. I'd heard it was a not so nice place to live, and your account verifies that for me! As for Vernal, we spent two weeks up there on a field session, and the Mormon thing didn't seem too overwhelming, but we didn't spend too much time in town. You are right though, within an hour in most directions there is plenty to do.
Snow!

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby cybrhikr » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:26 am

Colorado hands down! I missed the chance when I was young and still regret it. Thats why I spend so much time on this great site.

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby JimR » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:32 am

I grew up in a large metro area (Chicago), and I really "need" a city nearby (not necessarily to live in, just to have convenient access to it). It's not just the airport; it's the restaurants, entertainment, health care, and other amenities. So for me this question would be a no-brainer--obviously Brighton. But there are tradeoffs, and different people have different priorities; follow yours.
I have more age than experience, more experience than knowledge, and more knowledge than wisdom.
Yet somehow I usually make it back to the car safely; and oftentimes, so do the people that I'm with.

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Question??

Postby mts4602 » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:38 am

I have a question for anyone who moved to Colorado alone, without a gf or wife and with no connections at all to anyone in CO.

How and where did you meet new friends?

I am in a very similar situation to the orginal poster and this is my biggest fear, moving out to CO and having no friends, not meeting anyone and deeply regretting my decision. I am a shy person and don't meet new friends easily. Once I do it's great, but initially it's hard for me.

Matt
Matt

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Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby wooderson » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:45 am

mts4602 wrote:I have a question for anyone who moved to Colorado alone, without a gf or wife and with no connections at all to anyone in CO.

How and where did you meet new friends?

Matt


14ers.com! :)

Seriously, I actually moved here with my boyfriend, but we've met a lot of great people through this site. When you see an invite for an upcoming climb that interests you, join up. Lots of people organize meet & greets in different areas, too.

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Re: Question??

Postby bonehead » Fri Feb 18, 2011 12:07 pm

mts4602 wrote:without a gf or wife and with no connections at all to anyone in CO.
How and where did you meet new friends?t

I got lucky. My only neighbor and I met on the first day I moved in to a very rural area. He was outside shooting his bow. I immediately liked him. I asked if he climbed these mountains, the Sangres right there in front of us. He said yes, but he had just lost his partner, his daughter who had just gone off to college. Well, he has a new shooting partner and climbing partner. He even built me a beautiful bow.
I have found some great friends and even GFs.
Take your chances. This site alone should lead you to new, like minded friends.
Whatever work you are following should also lead to some social networking.
Do It, Good Luck
Pat

Re: Is Colorado Worth It?

Postby lordhelmut » Fri Feb 18, 2011 12:11 pm

Rock Springs, Wyoming = "Gas Vegas".

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