Friday dawned bright and beautiful in Salida Colorado, and CJ and I woke with a sense of peace. We may not know what God has in store for us, but we are eager to follow wherever He leads. With a new desire to enjoy this journey, no matter what the day had for us, we set off to meet with the County Zoning Director to better understand the zoning and permitting steps required to develop property in this area. The director, Don, was very amiable and seemed to have a genuine williness to help. He explained that based on the size of the land parcel (i.e.,less than 35 acres), certain restrictions or covenants may apply. We also learned about the steps / permits that we need to obtain and from where in order to develop and / or build on a piece of property in Chaffee County. Overall, the visit was informative and time well spent.
After the meeting, we found a really cool coffee shop in downtown Salida, Cafe Dawn, that had great ambiance, good coffee and a friendly staff (as we’ve found everywhere in town). And did I mention the free wi-fi? We used this opportunity to chill and finish the blog of our first day. Phillip, the owner, took time to visit with us and we discovered that he once lived in Austin…..what a small world! When we told him our intentions of moving to Salida, he merely smiled and said he enjoys living here but the pace is slow. Many locals call it “Slowida” instead of Salida. I think CJ likes the idea of a slower pace, but I’m not so sure how she’s gonna adjust.
After a little down time, we grabbed a quick bite and headed north (about 25 miles) to Buena Vista to the Remax office. We were very blessed that our Austin realtor, Tom Sunstrom (he is awesome if anyone is interested), connected us to a fellow realtor that works in the area. Unfortunately, when we called him on Thursday, we discovered that he was in California through Monday. Luckily, he pointed us to another gentleman in his office that could meet with us this trip. Kent was very helpful, printing off a number of listings, all properties over 35 acres with no covenants or restrictions. He seemed to know what we needed before we did. One thing we’ve noticed about everyone that we’ve come in contact with is how genuinely helpful they are. Kent was no exception. As we were leaving his office, he followed offering help in anything we may need, whether it be a good restaurant or auto repair.
From the long list Kent provided, we selected eight properties that we wanted to check out. Some of the properties were out of this world and out of our price range, others were not exactly what we had in mind. Once we explored each one of them, we weighed the pros and cons of each. Two properties in particular stood out.They had many of the characteristics that we were looking for: location, terrain, views, etc. Unfortunately, we couldn’t actually reach the lots due to the snow on the private road leading to them. However, despite not seeing these properties personally, we saw enough of the neighboring area to know they are great possibilities. We also really like the proximity to Salida (15 minutes from downtown) and the Monarch Ski area (within 35 minutes).
After many miles driven, we headed back to the hotel to meet a friend of ours from Austin that is currently living in Pueblo. Judith drove in to hang with us this weekend….what an amazing treat. We decided on a local steak and seafood place in the historic district, Currents, for dinner and fellowship. Add this one to our list of must tries. Since we’ve been in town, we’ve eaten at the top 3 recommended restaurants (per trip advisor) and we have not been disappointed!.
Another day is in the books, and a day of play is planned next….