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Discussion Starter #21
I think you have to define "good job." There are plenty of "good jobs" available that no one wants to do, even in classic VT industries like logging and quarrying/stone fabrication.

If you look at the migration data for those moving to VT, most are higher net-worth/salary earning individuals. Many are moving to Chittenden County/greater Burlington because that's where those jobs are (or education systems that feed people into those jobs) and thus where a lot of the tax revenue is spent. Most still drive to play, I'd assume.

So sure, tax/limit tourism. But if the intent is to create a more holistic economy that benefits all VTers (or anyone in any state outside of that income bracket), tourism is just a microcosm of a bigger picture problem that includes plenty of those who call VT home, including most who MTB I assume.

But to answer your question, I would still go. Family and friends and long standing business vendors make me feel comfortable not feeling like a "Stowe" tourist. I don't think I'm special but do think creating binaries between in and out of state visitors is a simplification that ignores a more thoughtful conversation.
I guess my angle is how to encourage people who visit here to move here, and see benefits of being a resident over a vacationer. Taxes and education are pretty big issues. Lack of real year-round work outside of a very consolidated area are problems. The state needs revenue, but they ain't gonna get it from us residents.

If a location could take the car traffic out of the equation for tourism, that would be a big shift. A real min. wage bill would be a big shift. There are ways tourism could work a lot better, but it has been said, "Americans are addicted to cheap travel." Would folks still come if it were less affordable, and or they made concessions like took a train and mass transit while here.

The buzz in tourism now is about carbon footprint. It's mostly buzz unless you're super rich. It's easy to go to a 100 percent green resort in Bali when you spend 5 grand a day. Lol. The affordable option should be the most sustainable, but this seems somehow contradictory to how capitalism wants to function.

I think folks accurately point out that Tourism is all Vt, or other places have for now and going forward. It is an undeniable national trend as well. The juice needs to be worth the squeeze. Less people paying more money that benefits residents more seems logical.
 

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I guess my angle is how to encourage people who visit here to move here, and see benefits of being a resident over a vacationer. Taxes and education are pretty big issues. Lack of real year-round work outside of a very consolidated area are problems. The state needs revenue, but they ain't gonna get it from us residents.

If a location could take the car traffic out of the equation for tourism, that would be a big shift. A real min. wage bill would be a big shift. There are ways tourism could work a lot better, but it has been said, "Americans are addicted to cheap travel." Would folks still come if it were less affordable, and or they made concessions like took a train and mass transit while here.

The buzz in tourism now is about carbon footprint. It's mostly buzz unless you're super rich. It's easy to go to a 100 percent green resort in Bali when you spend 5 grand a day. Lol. The affordable option should be the most sustainable, but this seems somehow contradictory to how capitalism wants to function.

I think folks accurately point out that Tourism is all Vt, or other places have for now and going forward. It is an undeniable national trend as well. The juice needs to be worth the squeeze. Less people paying more money that benefits residents more seems logical.
Dave, as you know we have a place in VT, we live now in NH, the consideration for living full time in our house in VT (which can support it as it isn't a "camp") took maybe 2-4 seconds. Taxes. Then quickly followed by more personal desires and hobbies that aren't supported as well in the NEK as they are elsewhere in New England.

Compared to the rest of the US, New England is a bodaciously small area for so many states to exist. I live in New England period.....normally in a given week I am in at least 4 states within N.E. The fact that you have a state like NH with no income tax, no sales tax.....but albeit higher property taxes (but not by too much) right next door to VT makes VT a very unattractive place from my perspective. Add in, there are very few jobs of the caliber my wife and I have. Which, while many looking in on our lives may think we are "lucky" to have good careers etc. but what they don't see is all the work it took to make our "luck" and the 12-14hr days we have been working for 20+ years and continue to be effective in these roles.

All that makes our threshold for increased costs like gas etc. to be a consideration only when they get insanely high as the need to decompress from daily stress is a very real benefit from a health perspective for us. Riding isn't just because it is fun for us, it keeps us from being homicidal lol

Overall, there is no real benefit for us to be a Vermont resident vs. NH and in fact there is the opposite relationship.
 

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slow
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A few random thoughts from an outsider reading this thread. Some may be relevant.

I've typically found home locations near where I want to recreate and then created work in those locations. I know that if I chose my house location based on work and then I had to go very far to recreate that I'd probably talk myself out of recreating more often that I should.

Currently I am able to ride from my front door, but have options for good riding anywhere from a 10 minute drive to a 6 hour drive (Moab, Crested Butte). My rule is similar to the OP in that I won't spend more than half the expected riding time driving to a ride. My best year so far had me riding from the house 186 rides out of a total of 192 that year, but I got kind of burned out on the local stuff. If I do end up driving, I'd rather not drive more than 20 minutes each way to ride 1.5-4 hours.

We do like to travel extensively, but not primarily for biking. I'd imagine our travel carbon footprint is somewhat balanced by the fact that I work and ride from home and we recreate close to home.

Living in a resort area for 7 years helped us decide that living in a tourist heavy area was not what we wanted long term. The recreation opportunities were endless, including hundreds of miles of singletrack out the back door and 6 world class ski areas within a 30 minute drive, but there were down sides:
- It actually wears on you a bit when you are always working while everyone else is playing.
- Things were really crowded a lot of the time.
- Traffic was a pain.
- The visitors didn't always respect the place they were visiting.
- The area didn't have many of the conveniences of a larger town / city.
- We were some of the very few middle class folks in the whole area. I knew a bunch of seasonal employees who were living 4 or 6 to a condo and barely making it, while I would ride daily by multi-million dollar homes that sat empty 50 weeks out of the year.
- Elevation and weather dictated a shorter mountain biking season that we wanted.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
A few random thoughts from an outsider reading this thread. Some may be relevant.

I've typically found home locations near where I want to recreate and then created work in those locations. I know that if I chose my house location based on work and then I had to go very far to recreate that I'd probably talk myself out of recreating more often that I should.

Currently I am able to ride from my front door, but have options for good riding anywhere from a 10 minute drive to a 6 hour drive (Moab, Crested Butte). My rule is similar to the OP in that I won't spend more than half the expected riding time driving to a ride. My best year so far had me riding from the house 186 rides out of a total of 192 that year, but I got kind of burned out on the local stuff. If I do end up driving, I'd rather not drive more than 20 minutes each way to ride 1.5-4 hours.

We do like to travel extensively, but not primarily for biking. I'd imagine our travel carbon footprint is somewhat balanced by the fact that I work and ride from home and we recreate close to home.

Living in a resort area for 7 years helped us decide that living in a tourist heavy area was not what we wanted long term. The recreation opportunities were endless, including hundreds of miles of singletrack out the back door and 6 world class ski areas within a 30 minute drive, but there were down sides:
- It actually wears on you a bit when you are always working while everyone else is playing.
- Things were really crowded a lot of the time.
- Traffic was a pain.
- The visitors didn't always respect the place they were visiting.
- The area didn't have many of the conveniences of a larger town / city.
- We were some of the very few middle class folks in the whole area. I knew a bunch of seasonal employees who were living 4 or 6 to a condo and barely making it, while I would ride daily by multi-million dollar homes that sat empty 50 weeks out of the year.
- Elevation and weather dictated a shorter mountain biking season that we wanted.
My exact experience living in Stowe.

A big part of why tourism is a PITA is everyone brings their car. Another part is very low wage jobs, or jobs that are seasonal. I feel like these two are low hanging fruit. While the seasonality of the resort work may be a reality, the pay plus imported seasonal labor suck.

I have another question about value for folks that travel a lot to ride and ski. Does a great day on the bike and a great day on skis/boarding compare equitably, to you. Not does it cost the same, but is the experience of coming up to Vt, or hitting Crested Butte for a great run a snow, or trails have equal value to you as an experience?
 

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slow
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My exact experience living in Stowe.

A big part of why tourism is a PITA is everyone brings their car. Another part is very low wage jobs, or jobs that are seasonal. I feel like these two are low hanging fruit. While the seasonality of the resort work may be a reality, the pay plus imported seasonal labor suck.
If the area has transit options or is walkable, that cuts down on the traffic considerably. We loved the train and metro service in some places we've traveled because we didn't have to bring a car. The bus service in the resort where we used to live was also great and had a good regular schedule, so we just left one of our cars parked for a couple of years.

I have another question about value for folks that travel a lot to ride and ski. Does a great day on the bike and a great day on skis/boarding compare equitably, to you. Not does it cost the same, but is the experience of coming up to Vt, or hitting Crested Butte for a great run a snow, or trails have equal value to you as an experience?
While I still enjoy skiing and snowboarding, they don't have the appeal they used to for me. I don't have any desire to travel to ski / snowboard, but will still occasionally travel to ride.
 

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I'm lucky that I'm retired and live here in the Mad River Valley. I can ride a dozen places within 30 minutes of my house and a dozen more if I push it to an hour. That's basically what I do - riding 15 - 20 spots and it never gets boring. Maybe once a month do KTA.

Every spring or fall (this year), I'll head out west and camp from my truck and do three weeks in western CO, Moab, AZ, NM, etc. to cover the shoulder seasons. My wife looks forward to my departure. :)

Drive far less to ski but try and get one trip a year by plane with the family to someplace new. More and more I'm doing BC and skipping the lifts.

This is why I did the grind for 30 years.......
 

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I wind up with the local burnout effect to some extent. While I have quite a few miles of trail that starts about two miles from home, the two next closest places are ten to twelve miles away - not outside my capability, but it makes it more likely that I'll chuck the bike in a motorized vehicle to get there.
 

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I am the fledgling (and only--despite solicitations) member of the anti-travelites society. A society in which, to travel outside a fifty mile radius of one's home, a competency test must be passed. Passing the test essentially documents that a member has an intimate understanding of his/her own "backyard." If competency is demonstrated, a 50 mile extension (to the existing permitted radius) is allowed. My experience has been that there is so much to learn about one's own "back yard" that venturing afar is impractical and encourages taking for granted what one already has access to.
In my old age I have taken more to "gravel grinding" (partly because of the cost of getting extreme and partly because Perry Hill has been taken over by a bunch of models from a backcountry.com advertisement) and have been pushing the outer boundary of my perimeter. I Just rode through some areas in vermont -- Deep Gibou -- for example that I never knew existed! And Eagle-Ledge road, WTF?!
Long story short, I know I am an odd duck, but I struggle to understand the desire to go to an airport and fly somewhere else. Having done that (I know--violation of the society's main tenet), mostly against my will and due to family obligations to "vacation", I have found it is rarely worth it and, mostly, an "antivacation" in which stress levels go up and I pine for a return to work/ride/work/ride in VT.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I am the fledgling (and only--despite solicitations) member of the anti-travelites society. A society in which, to travel outside a fifty mile radius of one's home, a competency test must be passed. Passing the test essentially documents that a member has an intimate understanding of his/her own "backyard." If competency is demonstrated, a 50 mile extension (to the existing permitted radius) is allowed. My experience has been that there is so much to learn about one's own "back yard" that venturing afar is impractical and encourages taking for granted what one already has access to.
In my old age I have taken more to "gravel grinding" (partly because of the cost of getting extreme and partly because Perry Hill has been taken over by a bunch of models from a backcountry.com advertisement) and have been pushing the outer boundary of my perimeter. I Just rode through some areas in vermont -- Deep Gibou -- for example that I never knew existed! And Eagle-Ledge road, WTF?!
Long story short, I know I am an odd duck, but I struggle to understand the desire to go to an airport and fly somewhere else. Having done that (I know--violation of the society's main tenet), mostly against my will and due to family obligations to "vacation", I have found it is rarely worth it and, mostly, an "antivacation" in which stress levels go up and I pine for a return to work/ride/work/ride in VT.
Good one.

One day soon I'm going to hike Perry Hill with a tape measure to attempt to calculate "Involved Lands". I think the state is not adhering to their stated land use ethics there. I'm curious how it compares the KT.
 

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I have almost unlimited singletrack out the door but I still like to travel to ride. I tend to ride more from home in spring & fall when days are short and a quick rip is waiting right outside the window. This year has been a LOT of riding from home, but a bunch of backyard trail building with my son too. Some pics of my boy below.

I work from home and sometimes a week will go by without me getting in the truck or van at all, so I don't beat myself up about traveling to ride. I like visiting new places and experiencing different flavors in trail design & construction. My lady and I have traditionally taken spring MTB trips out west during mud season, usually 3+ weeks of riding (but not this year). We ride at least once and often twice daily in between putting down the miles, then stay a few days at prime destinations before moving on to the next one. No regrets, we've experienced some of the finest riding in the USA over the years.

Carbon footprint - I try to live a simple life and minimize my impact. To that end, my domestic water is heated by solar and I have a solar PV array that generates most of my electricity. I harvest, cut & split my firewood, and while burning wood may not be the cleanest method of heat I feel like it's better than burning oil (and trees are fully re-generational). All this may sound great but my hypocrisy comes in the form of a big diesel-powered van. I also have a tractor and mini-ex so maybe the hypocrisy runs deep, but my 1/4 mile long driveway and a bit of acreage make it easy to justify my need for the equipment.

Life is short and statistically speaking mine is at least 2/3rds over so I have no problem travelling to see other parts of the world.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Cool^. You are clearly very considerate of your personal impact on your surroundings. It makes no sense to nit pick what parts of your existence I don't agree with. You're informed and making choices, that's how it's supposed to work.

I'll add that I know you contribute personally far more than you take for your local trails. It really is that simple, if you want good riding locally.
 

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I'm currently building a primitive camp here at my place (120 acres ) so I can have that "away" experience without actually having to get in my car and go away. I'm building it from all locally sourced wood. I expect it to last 30 years and then disappear into the ground shortly after I do, leaving nothing but a couple of pounds of galvanized steel.

I had kept a place in East Burke for a couple of years. It was a weekend get away for the first few, then my residence for a couple. When the area changed the form of MTBing they offered I lost interest...it all started to get very same-y and VERY crowded.

I believe that the idea of moving to live and work where you want to play makes a lot of sense to lifestyle mountain bikers the same way surfers move to the waves and climbers move to the rocks. I think that few people really order their lives that way and that mountain biking is, for most, just another form of consumerism.
 

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I'm currently building a primitive camp here at my place (120 acres ) so I can have that "away" experience without actually having to get in my car and go away. I'm building it from all locally sourced wood. I expect it to last 30 years and then disappear into the ground shortly after I do, leaving nothing but a couple of pounds of galvanized steel.

I had kept a place in East Burke for a couple of years. It was a weekend get away for the first few, then my residence for a couple. When the area changed the form of MTBing they offered I lost interest...it all started to get very same-y and VERY crowded.

I believe that the idea of moving to live and work where you want to play makes a lot of sense to lifestyle mountain bikers the same way surfers move to the waves and climbers move to the rocks. I think that few people really order their lives that way and that mountain biking is, for most, just another form of consumerism.
Mojo - I don't think you are alone in that thought on KT or more to the point KTA. While the COVID issue has certainly taken center stage with regards with things everywhere, the KTA kerfuffle isn't over as there is still plenty of local and not so local discussion about how to deal with the situation there.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Mojo - I don't think you are alone in that thought on KT or more to the point KTA. While the COVID issue has certainly taken center stage with regards with things everywhere, the KTA kerfuffle isn't over as there is still plenty of local and not so local discussion about how to deal with the situation there.
Environmental regulatiuon for trails is going to get pulled out of act 250 and given the ANR/FPaR. You can read their philosophy on trails. They don't seem to take their own stated ethics that seriously. Not only does the Department of Tourism and Marketing advertise those resources, all the separate agencies also do their own marketing. Kind of like giving the hen house over to the fox to keep an eye on. The can could be kicked down the road for years, and unless something changes with the state, everything, including the KTA is a fantastic success....and we need a lot more of it spread around.
 
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