Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 67

Thread: Where to live

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-26-2015
    Location
    Fort Myers, florida
    Age
    58
    Posts
    39

    Default Where to live

    I got into backpacking 3 years ago. I live in South Florida and there are not alot of opportunities for hiking here. Yes, i know about the Florida trail and have hiked a small portion of it. But, it's not the same as being in the mountains.

    What I decided to do.....3 years ago..... was work here in Florida thru the winter months then go hiking in the summer.

    I am a 57 year old male.....grew up in WV..... and am exploring the idea of moving closer.....permantly maybe....to hiking areas. At least then I could get out on weekends and be around others that hike also.

    I have googled and read about places such as Chattanooga, Johnson City, Roanoke, Knoxville. I would like to stay in southeast but maybe Vermont, or new Hampshire or upstate New York.

    Would like to get some thoughts from people that live in places that are hiking friendly. Real life experience if you will. Thanks in advance.

    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Registered User methodman's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-23-2015
    Location
    Virginia Beach, Virginia
    Age
    71
    Posts
    140

    Default Where to live

    Virginia, young man, Virginia!

  3. #3

    Default

    The area between Asheville NC, Brevard NC, and Greenville SC. Hiking and a variety of outdoor activities and lifestyle options. In this area many full lifetimes of basically an infinite number of options exist...well beyond just the AT. I live in the Hotlanta area and most times go here regionally.

  4. #4

    Default

    I'm biased because I live here, but the inland northwest has great opportunities. A wilder experience, often. Frolic with the grizzlies.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  5. #5
    Registered User hikermiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    11-24-2007
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Age
    73
    Posts
    114

    Default

    I live in CT. It is terribly expensive but CT has 850 miles of "blue trails", many towns have local trails, and there are 50 or so miles of the AT + the AT has 85 miles in MA and 52 miles of the AT in NY east of the Hudson River. I am retired so I get to go hiking every day.

  6. #6

    Default

    Morganton NC is the gateway to the Wilson Creek backcountry including Steels Creek, Upper Creek, Raider Camp Creek, Harper/North Harper, Lost Cove Creek, Gragg Prong etc. And Linville Gorge is nearby.

    Boone NC is close to Mt Rogers and the AT and not far from the mentioned Wilson Creek areas.

    Robbinsville NC/or/Tellico Plains TN are very close to some outstanding backpacking destinations. Snowbird, Citico, Slickrock, Bald River etc.

    Cleveland TN is close to Big Frog and Cohutta wilderness---the biggest wilderness in the East.

  7. #7
    Registered User
    Join Date
    09-06-2008
    Location
    Andrews, NC
    Age
    61
    Posts
    3,650

    Default

    I live in rural western NC and love this area. If you want a more urban area, but still be very close to hiking opportunities, I'd consider Asheville, NC.

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    08-14-2015
    Location
    Rome, Georgia
    Posts
    257

    Default

    I grew up in Florida and came to Georgia (Athens) in 1979. I've stayed in North Georgia, well outside Atlanta (heaven help the poor residents of that place) ever since.

    I've camped and hiked from California to Maine, though the great majority of my outdoor time has been spent in the Southern Appalachians.

    There are many nice places to live between Roanoke and North Georgia, and certainly many more to the north, but those I'm unfamiliar with. But of all the cities I've visited in the good ol' USA in the past 57 years (I'm your age), Chattanooga is the only one I'd live in. Big enough to be a city but with amazine access to all kinds of outdoor adventures within an hour or two - the Cumberland Mountains, Lookout Mountain, the Cohutta Wilderness, lots of rivers and creeks, lots of rock climbing and spectacular caving, hang gliding heaven, terrific bicycling and mountain biking, wonderful weather year around, great national monuments including Chickamauga, which is superb, and nice people.

    Other places can put together a long list of amenities, but Chattanooga is like a perfect storm. (P.S. I live an hour south of Chattanooga, so my opinion isn't biased by residence there.)

  9. #9
    Registered User
    Join Date
    01-22-2012
    Location
    Lake City, SC
    Age
    61
    Posts
    145

    Default

    I'd say western NC. Bryson City, Franklin, Sylva, Waynesville, and Maggie Valley are all favorites of mine. I hope to have a vacation place in one of those areas within the next five years.
    I may never get to thru hike but I'll never get through hiking.

  10. #10
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
    Join Date
    10-22-2002
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Age
    57
    Posts
    7,894
    Images
    296

    Default

    Western NC, eastern TN, anywhere in Virginia up from the southwest through the Shenandoah valley, North Georgia. Basically anywhere in the Southern Appalachians. Why stay in the South? Because you can hike year-round. Yeah, it's cold in the winter and there can be some snow, but the trails are passable and it's not -40F with 100mph gusts like, say, New Hampshire (no offense.....) Much longer hiking season, good variety of trails, friendly people.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  11. #11
    Registered User
    Join Date
    02-04-2013
    Location
    New Orleans
    Posts
    4,043

    Default

    I enjoyed Shenandoah National Park when I lived in DC and thought the little towns on the eastern side could be great retirement places - I'm thinking of the secondary access routes to the park like near Old Rag. Virginia has great hiking and I miss it quite a bit.

  12. #12
    illabelle's Avatar
    Join Date
    06-25-2012
    Location
    Lurkerville, East Tn
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,357
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bigcranky View Post
    Western NC, eastern TN, anywhere in Virginia up from the southwest through the Shenandoah valley, North Georgia. Basically anywhere in the Southern Appalachians. Why stay in the South? Because you can hike year-round. Yeah, it's cold in the winter and there can be some snow, but the trails are passable and it's not -40F with 100mph gusts like, say, New Hampshire (no offense.....) Much longer hiking season, good variety of trails, friendly people.
    Big Cranky says it best. We all tend to favor the places where we live, but really ANYWHERE in the Southern Appalachians is hiker heaven. So make your decision based on proximity to other stuff: family, work, whatever.

  13. #13

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bigcranky View Post
    Western NC, eastern TN, anywhere in Virginia up from the southwest through the Shenandoah valley, North Georgia. Basically anywhere in the Southern Appalachians. Why stay in the South? Because you can hike year-round. Yeah, it's cold in the winter and there can be some snow, but the trails are passable and it's not -40F with 100mph gusts like, say, New Hampshire (no offense.....) Much longer hiking season, good variety of trails, friendly people.
    Quote Originally Posted by illabelle View Post
    Big Cranky says it best. We all tend to favor the places where we live, but really ANYWHERE in the Southern Appalachians is hiker heaven. So make your decision based on proximity to other stuff: family, work, whatever.
    The south isn't the only place to hike yr round! The immediate western coast is warmer in winter than the the east coast. One can spend a lifetime hiking yr round from Olympic NP/SW Canada along the Pacific Ocean all the way south along the Oregon and Cali coasts. When warmer explore inland. Some of my most memorable winter backpacking has been on the west coast in winter along the coasts.

    In my at one time more limited mindset I said to those in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Montana "what do you hikers do in winter?" They said they bundle up and throw on ski, skates, and snowshoes. They go on hikes with special shoes called umm, snowshoes. They hike out on foot in boots on the ice of a frozen Lake Superior along Pictured Rocks National Seashore and elsewhere on the Great Lakes to view spectacular ice formations. There are those that also do it in Nev around Lake Tahoe on the TRT. Looking inland out on the ice on foot while hiking along seashores/lake shores is a great experience not available during the warmest months.


    If you want to get out on foot you get out. You don't have to be in the south to do it.

  14. #14
    illabelle's Avatar
    Join Date
    06-25-2012
    Location
    Lurkerville, East Tn
    Age
    60
    Posts
    3,357
    Journal Entries
    1

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    The south isn't the only place to hike yr round! ...... If you want to get out on foot you get out. You don't have to be in the south to do it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    The area between Asheville NC, Brevard NC, and Greenville SC. Hiking and a variety of outdoor activities and lifestyle options. In this area many full lifetimes of basically an infinite number of options exist...well beyond just the AT. I live in the Hotlanta area and most times go here regionally.
    Just sayin'

  15. #15

    Default

    What do you do for a living?. Is it a profession that is transportable? That really factors in on where you can afford to live. There are some lower cost areas up in Maine along the trail but they are remote form civilization

    The other aspect to consider is do you like four seasons?. Cold and snow keeps many a southerner from moving up north. More than a few folks move up in the spring and enjoy the summer and fall but sometimes after Christmas they pull up the shallow roots they started putting in and headed south. The bummer is if they hung around until February as winter hiking and snowshoeing is great but it does require some skills that have to be learned. I know a few folks who have done it but far more that didnt.

    My area in the Whites has many hiker friendly towns. My town has access to a daily bus route to Boston and the AMC Shuttle system. Lots of tourist season jobs but you will not earn a living or find benefits unless you are real lucky.

  16. #16

    Default

    Let's not overlook north Florida. I've put together a list of 30 or so day hiking trails in and around Tallahassee.

    I had a work assignment years ago in Knoxville and while the area was incredible, it was crowded. Sometimes finding a place to park near a trailhead was a challenge. Maybe its different now.

    Another low cost of living area is Alabama. The Talladega National Forest / Cheaha State Park is sometimes described as all the beauty of the Appalachians without the crowds. Only an hour or so from a couple of cities and probably less than two hours from Atlanta for those times when one needs/wants a city and its amenities. When I lived in Alabama (grad school) the joke was they could double the property taxes and still have the lowest in the country. However Alabama does have a state income tax. Somehow the government will get the money it needs to function.

    As for me, I sometimes debate moving when I retire (in less than 3 years) with some of the same criteria as yourself. I am likely to stay along the I10 corridor in Florida. Nice hiking, nice beaches, the trails in Alabama and Georgia are only a weekend trip away, no income tax, low property tax outside the cities, and one can garden all year long.

  17. #17
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-26-2015
    Location
    Fort Myers, florida
    Age
    58
    Posts
    39

    Default

    Appreciate all the info. Definetly would like to stay in the southern Appalachians. I have a few months yet to decide. My work is easily transferable. I am also semi retired. I will also visit these places and spend a few days there first. Do my homework if you will.

    I will be leaving Florida in May or June to finish the AT. I have hiked to Pawling, NY in two different LASH. Might start back at DWG just to give myself a little more time before the Whites.

    Then after that I will decide. Florida has become my home but at the same time I wish i could be hiking right now in the mountains. I just feel better when i am.

    What's funny....to me anyway.....is that I'm thinking about basically retiring in the mountains when most people come to Florida to retire.

    Thanks again for all the info.

    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

  18. #18
    Registered User
    Join Date
    11-26-2015
    Location
    Fort Myers, florida
    Age
    58
    Posts
    39

    Default

    Perrymk.....yes north florida is defintely a thought. It has a lotta upside to what im looking for.

    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

  19. #19
    Registered User StubbleJumper's Avatar
    Join Date
    01-23-2007
    Location
    Constant Amazement
    Posts
    509

    Default

    This question might be considered somewhat indiscreet, but do you have adequate wealth to pay for two homes? It strikes me that owning a home in the north for use during the summer, and a second home in the south for the winter would be ideal. That way, you avoid the excessive heat during the summer and you don't need to deal with 4 feet of snow when you want to hike in the winter.

  20. #20

    Default

    I have run into several folks over the years that do something like the two homes thing but they use a motorhome. They have a pad with power, a well and septic system down south in the rural areas where land is cheap and the same setup north. They usually have a shed at each place and leave their seasonal stuff in it. They spend a lot of time at either spot with a lot of traveling in between. I have also know a few "gypsies" that travel around in a motor home with no fixed home. Many only do it for a few years and get it out of their system. At some point they get lonely and want a sense of place and despite having met many folks the friendships are shallow. A lot of them end up traveling several years and ending up selling the motorhome if they have the assets or just parking it one day in one spot when the money and motivation run out. If there is a spouse involved its usually that one of the other has a serious medical condition or just plain has gotten more infirm than the other one.

    If you are in good physical condition you are probably looking at being retired for as long as you have worked. I see many folks active on the trails into the mid seventies but attrition starts to kick in the later into the seventies they get. Somehow you need to have plan for what comes after hiking but many folks transitioning to early retirement (like myself) are mostly focused on getting out of the rat race.

Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
++ New Posts ++

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •