PDA

View Full Version : native of Seattle area?



eventidepress
10-25-2011, 08:22 PM
Edit: other less specific questions in post #6

I've been to Seattle a couple times, and I adore the city. I want to set my new WIP there, but I'm definitely going to have questions I need to ask a native person... First one I've run up against is about Mt. Rainier and its hiking trails -- whether there are any notoriously dangerous trails, what are some of the peaks on Rainier that are well-known to locals...
But there will be other questions as I go, I'm sure! If anyone knows someone from the Seattle region, point me their way pretty please? :D

Evelyn
10-25-2011, 08:39 PM
Hi Ellen,

I live in Seattle. I'm happy to help - but unfortunately I don't know much about serious hiking at Mt. Rainier.

Some of my favorite places are on Mt. Rainier. Longmire Meadow is a beautiful walk about a mile long, one I've taken almost every year for most of my life. Not exactly a hike, though.

At Paradise, there is a network of trails leading from the lodge. These trails can be very steep, and are pretty much above the treeline. They have stunning views. One of them leads to the summit.

The Wonderland Trail (a real hiking trail for serious hikers) I don't know very much about. I think it goes all the way around the mountain. I've seen where it intersects with some of the wimpier trails I hang out on.

Hope this helps, I'm sure I can help more with other subjects.

Evelyn

blacbird
10-25-2011, 08:56 PM
Google is your friend. Search for "Rainier Washington hiking trails" and you'll get a wealth of information. I just tried it, to be sure.

caw

eventidepress
10-25-2011, 09:49 PM
Thanks Evelyn! That's really helpful :D I'll check out Wonderland Trail, maybe that will work... And, I might bug you with more Seattle-y questions, if/when I run into them... *bats eyes*?

@caw - yeah, I tried googling first, but it always helps to get the perspective of a native to the area, too. Hard to tell just from google results what the rumors about a certain area are, or if there's one spot that's more dangerous than the rest (which are all marked "dangerous in snow") and that kinda stuff. :) I <3 google, but sometimes you need to ask real people stuff... or, I do, anyway? *shrug*

Canotila
10-25-2011, 11:48 PM
I live in the middle of Seattle, there's actually a lot of us here on AW. If nobody has answers to your Mt. Rainier questions I can pass them along to my brother who has done a fair bit of climbing on it.

eventidepress
10-26-2011, 08:18 PM
Thanks Canotila!

I had a couple other just general-Seattle-type questions too... Mostly technical stuff like:

- Is Seattle one of those cities where everyone lives in the suburbs, or do people actually live downtown there?
- Do the public schools have a ton of kids in them, or are they generally split into smaller districts?
- Does it feel like a big city or a small city (in terms of people's attitudes, friendliness, frequency of theft, that sorta stuff)?
- Is it generally a safe city?
- Anything you could add about the character of the city would be cool too (i.e. I'd characterize NYC as impatient and energetic, or Pittsburgh as aging but adaptable).

Thanks again everyone! :D

Canotila
10-26-2011, 09:02 PM
My answers are in red. Let me know if there's anything else.


Thanks Canotila!

I had a couple other just general-Seattle-type questions too... Mostly technical stuff like:

- Is Seattle one of those cities where everyone lives in the suburbs, or do people actually live downtown there?

It really depends. There are people who live downtown in half-million dollar condos, and kids in studio apartments and dorms going to school. It's really expensive. Mostly the people who work downtown don't live there. A lot of them don't even live in Seattle, and are farther south (it's cheaper if you go south). Maple Valley, Renton, Tacoma, Olympia, etc. are all popular places to own houses for people working up north.

- Do the public schools have a ton of kids in them, or are they generally split into smaller districts?

Not really sure as my kids aren't school aged yet.

- Does it feel like a big city or a small city (in terms of people's attitudes, friendliness, frequency of theft, that sorta stuff)?

It depends on what area you're in. In Magnolia, where I live, it feels like a quaint little town only full of millionaires (wish I was one of them!). And instead of there being suburbs and countryside on the outskirts, there are skyscrapers and things. It has a little town center though, and the chamber of commerce holds little community events all the time like art shows, talent shows, holiday things, parades, etc. It's sort of surreal. When we moved here I asked a neighbor if they ever had any problems with thieves, and he said the only theft ever on their street was somebody stole his bike in the 70s. Ballard has a homey community feel to it as well, but it's a bigger place.

On the east side of the freeway, like Capital Hill and up north into the university district feels like a big city.

Downtown definitely feels like a large city. The buildings are massive and there's a lot of traffic. Renton too, though things are more spread out there. Bellevue is sort of in between. It feels big, but it's a really polished residential sort of big. Everything there is really nice, there's a lot of art galleries and things.

Shoreline feels a little more like an average suburb. Your car might get broken into there. My brother's house was broken into. Overall it's a nice area though.

People everywhere are pretty friendly. They don't usually go out of their way to make eye contact and interact with you, but if you start talking to someone or ask them for help they're pretty happy to help out or whatever.

- Is it generally a safe city?

Generally yes, it's quite safe. I walk my dogs at night without any fear. As a teenager I roamed the streets downtown after dark and nobody bothered me except to ask for cigarettes. There are some areas you'd want to be cautious in at night, like Capital Hill and White Center. Green Lake is another area where people watch for muggers lurking on the Green Lake trail (its a popular trail for joggers). Once in a while there will be a rash of muggings near the UW, but it's usually targeting students taking shortcuts through secluded greenbelts. I've lived in Tucson and would say it's much safer than Tucson if you're familiar with that city at all.

- Anything you could add about the character of the city would be cool too (i.e. I'd characterize NYC as impatient and energetic, or Pittsburgh as aging but adaptable).

Seattle is driven, but pretty laid back at the same time. There are a lot of businesses and growth but it doesn't feel frantic and relentless. You can't really tell who is a millionaire and who isn't by looking. People will get into their maseratis and mercedes' wearing old flannel button up shirts and socks with sandals. A lot of us never got out of that grunge thing.

Thanks again everyone! :D

JonathanBenway
10-31-2011, 11:05 PM
- Is Seattle one of those cities where everyone lives in the suburbs, or do people actually live downtown there?

- Does it feel like a big city or a small city (in terms of people's attitudes, friendliness, frequency of theft, that sorta stuff)?


I think it depends on your definition of "downtown" and "suburb". When I lived there, I lived in First Hill (or "Pill Hill"), which might or might not be considered downtown. If you take a look at what Wikipedia considers downtown (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Seattle_downtown_neighborhoods.jpg) there's a wide range of different neighborhoods. Belltown is a pretty artsy neighborhood with a lot of galleries; Pioneer Square contains a lot of old-school lofts (think SoHo in NYC); the International District is the big Asian-American enclave.

When I think of "suburbs", I think of everything on the east side (Bellevue, Bothell, Kirkland, Redmond) and I think if you're a homeowner with kids, and you bought something under seven figures, you're in those areas. But if you're a young student or artist, you could certainly be splitting a rent in an apartment in almost all of downtown for ~$500/month.

When I lived there (1995-99) I'd say it was a very laid-back place and people were pretty friendly. There's certainly some crime, but I never felt unsafe there.

Something else to consider is the era of the city. I'm sure things were much different in the 70s when Boeing was the biggest game in town. When I lived there, Microsoft was really exploding, as were all of the internet-related companies, so there was a huge expansion of people from all over, which gradually changed things.

Karen Junker
11-01-2011, 02:58 AM
I've lived in or near Seattle for nearly 40 years. I was a real estate agent, so I know a lot of the neighborhoods -- their coolness factor varies.

One of the things that bugs me most about some books set in Seattle are the mistakes made about things like how long it takes to walk from the Pike Street Market to Pioneer Square (for example).

I haven't hiked on Mt. Rainier (locals call it 'the mountain') since a bear wandered into my campsite once. But I'd be happy to talk with you about the city and its surroundings. At the moment, I live across the street from Microsoft, in Bellevue (a suburb on the Eastside). I have lived in Ballard, Fremont, Capitol Hill, Rainier Valley, Greenwood, West Seattle, Burien, University District and other surrounding areas and towns.

pollymilton
11-23-2011, 04:37 AM
Not a native, but have lived here since '94.

We live in a neighborhood called Ballard, which is right by the Sound. It is definitely a safe place, (as is all of Seattle, especially in comparison with other cities the same size)

The public schools are diverse in quality, and there are a LOT of private schools. We bought our house in '98, but there are still young families buying in the neighborhoods - but they have to be pretty upper middle class - houses are pricey here and have not suffered as much from the bubble as other towns.

I grew up in Wisconsin, and most of my friends here are from the midwest. Seattle "natives" - there is something called the Seattle Freeze for a reason - they like to seem nice, but it's more superficial and less practical. (Natives, don't kill me!)

Seattle is also very very tech friendly, and a ton of transplants still arrive from all over the world and country.

Helpful? Hope so. Let me know.
Polly