Colorado gets a lot of hype and most of it is well-deserved. There’s no doubt about it, Colorado is an amazing place to live. The Centennial State is filled with beautiful scenery, unmatched outdoor recreation opportunities, and more delicious craft beer than you could try in a lifetime. That being said, a few aspects of Colorado aren’t too great. Here’s a short list of reasons why no one should want to live in Colorado.
1. Insane weather
I could tell you all about how crazy the weather is in Colorado, but instead, I’ll simply list a few news stories from the past year that show off how wild Colorado weather can be: Bombcyclone strands 1,000+ drivers; Vehicles engulfed by avalanche on interstate; Drought 2nd worst in 124 years; High-altitude tornado destroys multiple homes; Mudslide closes I-70 exit; 16 inches of hail shuts down state park; Flooding prompts evacuation of homes; Lightning strikes multiple people at climbing area.
2. It’s getting expensive
As Colorado continues to grow, the cost of living seems to be on the rise in every aspect. In 2018, a report stated that a $100,200 salary is needed to purchase the “average” Colorado home. Average rent in Colorado is $1,305 for a two-bedroom apartment – $130 more than the national median. Even food costs tend to be higher in Colorado. While the national average monthly spend on food is $323.72, Denver residents spend $337.09 and Colorado Springs residents spend $348.53.
Thankfully, there are plenty of free things to do around the state, but it’s hard to ignore how expensive things are getting when the wallet does come out.
3. Bad drivers
It doesn’t take long in Colorado to realize that Centennial State drivers aren’t quite up to par. In fact, Colorado drivers rank 6th worst among the states, largely due to “failure to obey” driving rules. There are a number of theories regarding why it’s such a pain to travel in Colorado, but a few include dangerous roads, lots of out-of-towners, and wild weather. Don’t even get me started on merging…
4. Overcrowding on the trails
In the five years that I’ve called Colorado Springs home, I’ve witnessed a noticeable uptick in the number of people encountered on the local trails. Routes where I used to pass one or two hikers now seem to attract dozens. Parking at the trailhead never used to be an issue – now it is. More and more spots around the state are requiring advanced reservations to camp and utilizing pay-to-play approaches in attempt to cope with a flood of humans entering the outdoor recreation space.
I’m all for access to the outdoors and I deeply believe that a number of benefits come with larger numbers of people outside, from a louder political voice that can be used to protect the outdoor space to the growth of Colorado’s economy. That being said, increased crowds on the trails also means a bigger need for education about safety and responsible use. The overcrowding can also dampen the serenity that is often sought when entering the great outdoors.
5. Tight job market
There’s a ton of economic growth in Colorado, which means a ton of new jobs. However, there’s also a massive wave of people moving to Colorado (80,000 in a single year) to fill those jobs. The job market also seems to be slowing in key parts of the state, including Denver, which ranks 32nd of 51 among the country’s largest metros when it comes to job growth.
Granted, Colorado’s unemployment rate is tied with a historic low. However, this is also coupled with the fact that jobs were added to the state at the slowest rate since 2011 during the first half of 2019. When it comes to the job market in Colorado, a lot of talent seems to be competing for the best jobs.
6. Lack of food culture
The dish Colorado is best known for consists of deep fried bull testicles. I could end this point with that statement, but I’ll go on.
If you’re not in Denver, you’ll have a hard time finding restaurants on the cutting edge of the dining industry. If Colorado should be known for anything cuisine related, it’s probably the fast casual restaurant genre with places like Chipotle, Quiznos, Noodles & Co., Garbanzo, and Smashburger getting their start in the Centennial State. So there you have it, Colorado’s best food innovation is a step above fast food. Not the worst case scenario, but it could be better.
7. Tons of tourists
Ample tourism is a bit of a double-edged sword. While the 86 million people that visit Colorado annually bring a ton of money into the state, this hoard also adds to excessive crowding on the roads, on the trails, and at the resorts. It also likely contributes to increased dining costs in some parts of the state.
Plus, most tourists tend to drive extremely slow on mountain roads. I’m not saying anyone should be speeding or driving recklessly, but if you’re moving slow and notice a line of cars behind you, pull over and let them pass.
8. It’s painfully dry
Most of Colorado’s population essentially lives in a desert climate. Your skin and lips will crack. Wildfire risk is massive. Water-use restrictions are becoming more common. You’ll get bloody noses. Good luck growing a garden. Dust storm warnings are a thing. Oh, and the desert climate means a massive temperature drop come nightfall. Good luck.
There you have it – eight reasons why you should never want to live in Colorado. Colorado life definitely has its perks, but it’s not all sunshine and powder days. Personally, I love my life in Colorado, but it’s definitely not a place for everyone.
Do you agree with this list? Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments.
What We Believe
We are driven by our deep respect for our environment, and our passionate commitment to sustainable tourism and conservation. We believe in the right for everyone - from all backgrounds and cultures - to enjoy our natural world, and we believe that we must all do so responsibly. Learn More