Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
Retire in Powell, Wyoming?
Overview: Set yellow buttes, waving prairie grass and rolling hills between the Big Horn Mountains and the Absaroka Range in scenic northwestern Wyoming, Powell is the authentic American West. Tidy and down to earth, it started out in the early-1900s as a work camp for laborers digging ditches and canals.
The idea was to bring water to this arid region so alfalfa and grains could grow, and the first residents of Powell were merchants and schoolteachers offering services to the surrounding homesteaders and farmers. Today Powell is still primarily a ranching and farming community, but it is also home to Northwest College, a two-year institute with a strong performing arts program that supports a civic orchestra, a college choir, a jazz expo and a guitar and vocal summit. Gestalt Studios offer coffee, open music jams and workshops. Residents enjoy 125 acres of parks, tennis courts, trails and an 18-hole municipal golf course. The indoor aquatic facility has a leisure pool and a lap pool. There is also a farmers' market and the popular Park County fair. The downtown is simple but well maintained.
Outdoor recreation abounds. The geological hotspot known as Yellowstone is about an hour away. The Pryor Mountains, just northeast of Powell, has a wild horse herd and a mustang center. Bighorn National Forest has 1,500 miles of trails, and Bighorn Lake is rich with trout.
Population: 6,500 (city proper)
Age 45 or Better: 38%
Cost of Living: Meets the national average
Median Home Price: $230,000
Climate: Summer temperatures are in the 80s and 90s. Winter temperatures are in the single digits and teens. On average, the area receives six inches of rain and 14 inches of snow each year. The elevation is 4,292 feet above sea level.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? Yes
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No. The closest accredited hospital is in Billings, Montana, 90 miles away.
Public Transit: The senior center offers rides around town for a minimal fee.
Crime Rate: Well below the national average
Public Library: Yes
Political Leanings: Very, very conservative
College Educated: 27%
Cons: An accredited hospital is nowhere close.
Notes: Powell is well off the beaten path. Getting here takes a little doing as there is essentially just one road in and out. The hospital, while not accredited, receives good patient reviews and has an assisted living facility. Powell has some racial diversity. The town has grown by 5% within the last decade and has a good reputation.
Is Wyoming Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes, although the distance to an accredited hospital is a concern.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Wyoming's territorial legislature granted women the right to vote in 1869. It was the first government entity in the world to recognize "female sufferage." The Equality State entered the Union about 21 years later on July 10, 1890.
The 10th largest state by area, Wyoming is one of the country's smallest by population. The mean elevation is 6,700 feet above above sea level. The state can be divided by three distinct land areas. The Great Plains to the east are characterized by short grass, cottonwoods, and shrubs. Devils Tower National Monument rises out of this prairie. Ranges within Wyomings include the Big Horns and the Tetons. Ranges are separated by high plateaus known as the Intermontane Basins.
Depending on elevation, Wyoming can have cold winters and warm summers. Rain is rare. Snowfall in some mountain areas piles up to 200 inches or more per year. The southeastern portion of the state sees late spring thunderstorms and early summer tornados.
Tourism, energy, and agriculture contribute to the state's coffers. More than six million people visit Wyoming's national parks and monuments per year. Half of those visitors come to see stunning Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park.
An important part of Wyoming's cowboy culture, farms and ranches are leading producers of beef, hay, sugar beets, and wool. A major source of coal, coalbed methane, and crude oil, the state also has rich reserves of trona and natural gas.
Nellie Tayloe Ross became the country's first female governor in 1925. No other woman has served as Wyoming governor since.
Population - 585,501
Persons 65 years old and over - 15%
High school graduates, persons age 25+ - 92%
Bachelor's degree or higher, persons age 25+ - 26%
Persons of Hispanic or Latino origin - 10%
White persons, not Hispanic - 86%
Median household income - $59,113
Median home value - $199,900
Social Security taxed? No
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
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