Thread: Tucson, AZ
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Old Posted Feb 16, 2021, 2:49 AM
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Pedestrian Pedestrian is offline
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Originally Posted by Omaharocks View Post
I don't think you'll find anyone in New Mexico (other than tourists or vacation home owners) that think Tucson should have gone the route of Santa Fe (or Santa Barbara).

Tucson remains affordable and has kept a fun, funky, low key vibe, while Santa Fe is small, exclusive, and rather pretentious. In very poor New Mexico, Santa Fe stands out, and not in a good way to local residents.

In other words, I don't think we need another Santa Barbara at this point. We do need more Tucsons

For folks outside the southwest, I always say that Tucson is the closest approximation this country has to 90s slacker-era Austin. It's very special in its own way.
For the record, Tucson (city) has a population of 541,000 whereas Santa Fe is "only" 83,000. It's hard to scale up "cutesiness", especially when you are a border community (Santa Fe is in NORTHERN New Mexico) with lots of immigrant families in poverty.

Couple more things I wanted to mention for those interested: In November Arizona legalized recreational marijuana and I'm told even my small community now has a legal pot shop (5 oz maximum purchase). I imagine this helps the "90s slacker-era Austin" vibe.

Finally, soaps ej covered a lot of territory and photographed it brilliantly but he missed a few things other visitors might want to see: (1) The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum (this is more like an outdoor zoo with local animals than a museum but it's very well done); (2) One of the several local mountain canyons such as Sabino in Tucson or Madera down my way (great for hikers willing to climb higher into the mountains especially); (3) Tucson's own ski resort (yes indeed!) known as Mt. Lemmon Ski Valley atop the mountain overlooking downtown (Austin doesn't have that except maybe right now when the whole town is a ski resort); (4) several cavern systems including Kartchner Cavern where you can go deep underground in awe, (5) for Cold War fans, down my way there's the Titan Missile Museum, a former launch silo for this awesome weapon.

Oh, and if you are hiking and are especially lucky (or unlucky as you see it), you might encounter El Tigre (a jaguar). They sometimes wander up from Mexico into the local mountains and over the years several have been captured on camera traps set along game trails.

Last edited by Pedestrian; Feb 16, 2021 at 3:04 AM.
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