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I love living in Cottonwood
I am very thankful and pleased with where I live.
There are certainly many places in the U.S. that are safe, many very small towns isolated from natural disasters, nice weather and especially low crime and little pollution. However, many of these places offer little in the way of making a living, have few conveniences and are far from places that offer these things including a major airport.
Living in Arizona (lived in N.W. Illinois for 30 years) where I moved from to get away from the horrible winters, I recently did some internet searches regarding it’s safety. Of course there are many things to consider and different sites show all of these things. Phoenix as an example in a Risk and Insurance ranking of this country's 10 safest cities, Phoenix came in second. This study was not about personal safety or crime. It was about evaluating the propensity of cities to have catastrophic events. Phoenix came in so high on the list "due to its distance from the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, which allows for protection from hurricanes. In addition, the region rarely experiences major earthquake and tremor activity, with no deaths or injuries from earthquakes occurring in Arizona in the last century." While Arizona experiences some severe wildfires in the forested area of the state, the City of Phoenix is not considered at risk for that kind of event. As far as terrorism is concerned, the risk in Phoenix was deemed low, even though Sky Harbor International Airport is one of the busiest in the country and Palo Verde Nuclear Generation Station is about 50 miles away. Metro Phoenix OTOH has a high crime rate, heavy traffic, pollution, and is VERY hot. All reasons I move from there to Sedona and then Cottonwood.
For the state of AZ. according to Kiplinger.com, between 2006 and 2013, Its most frequent calamities include thunderstorms, flash floods, drought and dust storms.
This information can be quite different throughout the state as it is very geographically different with elevation difference from Humphreys Peak, northwest of Flagstaff, at 12,633 feet above sea level. The lowest point in Arizona is the Colorado River, only 70 feet above sea level.
I personally think I live in one of the safest and nicest year around climates overall in the USA. I live in Cottonwood which is about 60 miles south of Flagstaff (7000 ft.) 14 miles south of Sedona (4500 ft.) and 100 miles north of Phoenix (1200 ft.) Clarkdale borders Cottonwood and is rated the 3rd safest places in AZ. and Sedona is rated the 7th safest in AZ. Cottonwood (3300 ft.) had a meth problem several years ago but it has greatly subsided in the last few years and crime has dropped. It is located about dead center in the state geographically and has a population of about 24,000 people but the surrounding Verde Valley with a 15 mile radius is about an additional 42,000 people. It is surrounded by mountains so no tornado develop here and if they did they would break apart hitting the mountain hills. Of course no hurricanes since the closest ocean is the Sea of Cortez in Puerto Penasco (Rocky Point) Mexico 5.5 hours away. Few earthquake tremors which seldom can be felt. A dead volcanic region. No dust storms, they are common in the summer in Phoenix and Tucson. The Verde river runs year around through town but seldom floods with any property damage. About 150 miles from Palo Verde nuclear power plant so little fear of damaging fall out should a disaster occur. There are wildfires in central and northern AZ. but Cottonwood being in the high desert with mostly scattered scrub pine has none of these. We do have occasional thunder storms but they cause little property damage in the grand scheme of things. Cottonwood’s average winter day temperatures can range from average 55-75° F and evenings can drop to 30° F. In July the normal high temperature is 97 °F (36° C) with a low of 68 °F (20 °C). Annual precipitation is around 13 inches (33 cm). Humidity through most of the summer is low and in fact many of the homes are cooled with evaporative cooling. Cottonwood is the hub for local shopping with a few box stores such as Home Depot, Super Wal-Mart and Office Max. Old town Cottonwood has many wineries, restaurants and tourist shopping. Sedona is a destination resort town with lots of tourist shopping and outdoor activities and sees about 3 million visitors per year although many are day trippers and a lot of them on their way to or from the Grand Canyon which is about 1.25 hours from Cottonwood.
With the safety both from natural disasters and crime, nice weather, clean air, easy traffic, good shopping and major airport convenience it is a VERY nice place to live. GREAT place to retire, cost of living is relatively low. The cost of living index in Cottonwood is 73, which is 25% lower than the Arizona average and 27% lower than that for the entire country. The only down side I would say is that it has little in the way of making a good living for young and middle aged people with no industry or large employers. Small business owner do quite well. Healthcare and real estate as well as time share are very good careers here in the area. I can be at Snow Bowl Ski Resort in 1.25 hours in the morning and playing golf in Cottonwood in the afternoon.
The state of Arizona is sparsely populated with only about 2% of the land mass inhabited. Most of the land is state, BLM and National Forest owned.
Arizona is known for being hot, dry, and home to some of the most beautiful places on earth. Vibrant blue waterfalls, stunning canyons, and bright blue skies are main draws for many who vacation (and live) there. It contains sprawling deserts, yes, but it also has 11.2 million acres of national forest that covers more than a quarter of its land. Arizona produces more copper than any other state and is home to the world’s largest telescope. The Grand Canyon receives over 5.5 million visitors each year, but its unknown how many of these visitors fall in love and convert to residents.
Anonymous (Current resident)
Jul 12, 2019
A Town of Historic Culture
I totally love it here; it is a small historic desert mountain city within Yavapai County. Most of the aged homes have a Victorian Vintage layout. The housing is expensive and the average salary in this city is $32,712. There are many public, elementary, middle, high and religious schools nearby.
Summers can get hot, not exceeding 98 degrees. However, temperatures can be humid and sticky. During the winter, it gets cold, but it is mild, the most snowfall we got was three inches.
If you enjoy history and parks, then you will enjoy the state parks, trails, lakes and beaches. One of my go to destinations is the Tuzigoot National Monumental in Yavapai and the Verde River Greenway State Natural Area, right within the city. In addition, there is a bulk load of useful amenities, such as shopping centers, post office, libraries, restaurants and many other extraordinary places that are worth the while. Cotton Wood, Arizona is a great place for living, touring and vacationing.
May 28, 2018
Source: The Cottonwood, AZ data and statistics displayed above are derived from the 2016 United States Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS).