Thoughts on BOZEMAN MT. - Mountain Buzz

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Old 12-03-2005   #1
boof512's Avatar
Teacher, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 323
Thoughts on BOZEMAN MT.

My girlfriend and I are thinking about moving to Montana near Bozeman. I live in Fort Collins now, and really enjoy it, but would like to move somewhere where you can still get a nice piece of property without selling your sole, and it would be nice to live in a place where it doesnÂ’t take 30 minutes to get across town.
I need to be close to kayaking, climbing, and back country skiing. I have really looked into Bozeman, and understand that it is still a city, and housing prices are not cheap, but it does seam like one could get away from it all a little quicker. We would consider moving to another place in CO, but we have family in Bozeman.
I would really appreciate your thoughts on the general feel of the town, the college (MSU) particularly the education department, your thoughts on the kayaking and other outdoor options in the area. Any other insight would be great!!
Thanks for your time

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Old 12-04-2005   #2
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 71
Outdoor options around Bozeman are pretty good. The local kayaking isn't particularily great, but there are alot of options if you drive a couple of hours. We don't have much for dam release opportunities, so in the late summer/fall I give up on boating. My climbing friends never complain about their options. Decent backcountry skiing to be had, epic if you are willing to drive a few hours. Skiing can last well into the summer.

Can't comment on MSU.

On housing, forget about finding a house for under $200k in Bozeman, options are limited under $250k. Belgrade is a little better, but you'll take a hit on commute and general ambiance. Livingston and Three Forks are more affordable, and come with a real small-town MT feel. Another problem for Bozeman (in some regards) is the fact that we are professional-heavy. Most people take a pay cut to live here.

One other positive is that there are alot of outdoor orientated people here. Won't take you long to meet plenty of boaters.

Good luck.

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Old 12-04-2005   #3
Bozeman, MT
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
Bozeman is great, way better than fort collins. I am currently going to school at MSU, and think it's great. I have several friends from fort collins and they complain about the lameness (minus gettin drunk almost every week end) there is nothing to do. The atmosphere is way different in Bozeman, a ton people are stoked about the outdoors. The town has a great feel, it's got the perfect number of people to keep it small feeling, yet enough to party hardy. The location is super central for really epic boating, you get year round class V quake an hour away, the gally and madison 20 minutes away, and a ton more like big Timber and mesa falls a little fartrher. I recomend bozeman hands down
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Old 12-04-2005   #4
Seattle, Washington
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 207
You'll love Bozeman. There are tons of motivated people there with a very positive vibe so it's easy to meet people. The nearby boating is decent (fr is much better) with quick access to the Gallatin which has about eight miles of fun play. Quake and Beartrap of the Madison are a bit more travelwise than progers mentioned.

Climbing is great. Lots of pros are based out of there- Carlos Buhler, Conrad Anker, Tony Yaniro, Joe Josephson, etc.. mainly because of the ice climbing 25 miles outside of town up in Hyalite and the central access to the Beartooths and Tetons. You can be roped up and on the rock 20 minutes from town.

The skiing is probably the best thing there. I'm sure your familiar with Bridger, Big Sky, and Moonlight Basin. The ridge at Bridger will keep you entertained all winter long (that's probably the thing I miss the most now skiing in Summit County resorts, pretty bland in-bound terrain here). Tons of billygoating to be had there and they get some pretty big dumps. Lots of bc too.

I think the Education department is decent at MSU. If you want to teach K-12 in town, good luck with that because there's a waiting list to get paid a paltry sum of money. There are definitely sacrifices you have to make to live there.

I've knew three folks up there originally from Ft. Collins and they all preferred Bozeman hands down.

There's been discussion of this in the past so I would do a search and read some past posts.
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Old 12-08-2005   #5
Wydaho, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 118
.....and the coolest thing, it is only 3 hours from Driggs! Ankle is getting better and hopefully off crutches by next week.
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Old 12-09-2005   #6
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 2
some good, some bad, mostly good

Don't move here if you dislike... cowboys, country music, people who drive terribly, big f'in trucks everywhere, roads that take a long time to get plowed, smoky bars (some are changing their ways), congested downtown traffic, not so many high paying jobs, more expensive season passes (than Vail 5 mtn. pass), or driving a ways to have some fun. If you are a park and play kind of boater, stay down there.

Move here if you enjoy...powder as dusty as Utah, steep chutes that gapers can't access (buy yer beacon and shovel to hike access the ridge at bridger bowl), a community that is motivated and outdoor oriented, rivers that rival much of colorado (larger volume on the average, minus the colorado), nice creekin', hot springs right where you want them, the most amazing national park (Yellowstone) only an hour and a half away, college town feel, or great stores that beat big box shopping.

On the whole, this town is sweet, if you don't mind driving, you can find cheaper rent in Belgrade, a 7 mile drive from town and where the airport is anyhow. MSU is nice, but no freakin' Harvard, the program I am in, (snow science emphasis within earth science) is the only one of its kind. Notable for the engineering school, the architecture school and little known film/theater department. Good night music. Has plenty of art festival type things as well as plays and symphony.

This town is growing fast, so act quick. There have been many comparisons b/w Fort Collins and here, as far as growth rate is concerned, 6% or so per year. Belgrade grew 23% in the last 4 years! Find a job before you move, housing is cheap until you can find something to buy, and yes expect to pay about $250,000 for decent house.

Just got off the mountain on a sweet bluebird morning, a little wind crusted but the hike access made it great.
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