Moving to Colorado has been nothing short of amazing. From 70 degree days to random next-day blizzards, the weather and every day lifestyle is a far cry from my life back in St. Louis. I couldn’t be happier, but there’s some aspects I wish had been better prepared for.
1. It’s dry.
Really dry. If you’re from Arizona, you may not think it’s dry. If you hail from the coast, or even Missouri, you may want to invest in a humidifier. We just bought one the other day because waking up at midnight with a sore throat and feeling like you need to drink a gallon of water gets old fast.
Besides feeling thirsty all the time and having crispy dry skin, it’s not so bad. Just remember to have lots of water and body lotion on hand. And don’t forget the Chapstick! Your lips will thank you.
2. The altitude will kick your butt.
Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But eventually, you will feel the effects of high altitude through headaches, dry throat, and dry skin. My recommendations (and everyone else’s for that matter) are to drink lots of water and work your way up to more strenuous exercise routines.
Denver is a little over a mile high. Colorado Springs is about a mile and a half above sea level. You will feel the burn in your lungs and find yourself out of breath at random times. Give yourself 3-6 months to fully adjust.
3. Everyone is really nice.
I’m from Missouri, and I thought people were nice there until I came to Colorado. Colorado has twice the nice. So far, everyone I’ve come across has been interested in chatting about the weather and their personal stories. Plus, if you need help, someone is almost always willing to lend a hand.
4. Everything is expensive.
EVERYTHING. I once heard that even the poor people don’t look poor in Colorado. Housing is outrageous. Groceries are through the roof and there isn’t a cheap alternative. There are no Aldis out here. Is it because marijuana is legal? I don’t know. All I can say is, if you think you can move out here and live an identical lifestyle (especially if you’re coming from another state in the Midwest), you can’t. Everything in your budget will change.
5. The weather is crazy.
Just like Missouri, only worse. High and dry winds will come out of nowhere. A cool day with full sun will burn your body before you ever realize you need sunblock. Just get face lotion with an SPF in it. Save yourself the struggle.
Winter Weather Advisories with predicted snowfalls of 2-4 inches can quickly escalate to full on Blizzard warnings with 12-18 inches of expected snow. This will shut down Denver, even though it is Colorado and snow is its thing. You don’t want to die, do you? So yeah, stay in your house if there’s a blizzard out. Don’t be dumb. Just come to expect that the weather will change on an hourly basis.
If you’ve ever lived in Colorado, did these things surprise you? What else should someone be prepared for?