I, like many, many other climbers, have been visiting Squamish for five years now and I've always loved it here. When I became burned out by city living in Vancouver, I could think of no better place to live than this town.
I've been here about five months now and I've heard a lot about the changing face of Squamish. "Every time a house sells, Squamish changes," I hear. But it was only a few weeks ago that I personally experienced how true this really is.
I've travelled quite a bit over the last 15 years, moving from Ottawa to Vancouver and taking in as much of the west coast as time and cost would permit. During that time I've met hundreds of people, and made a few friends and many friendly acquaintances, most of whom I lost contact with.
Well, in the last few weeks I've been bumping into these people all over town. It seems they've all had the same epiphany I had and all within the last four years or so - no one has an original idea anymore.
Every time I bump into a long lost friend, the conversation pretty much takes the same path. It starts with recognition, then counting down the years since the last time you saw each other, then recapping your life so far and finally, "What brings you here?" Then everyone looks up. Who wouldn't want to make a life in this beautiful place? And the changing face of Squamish has been an invitation to young families and the upwardly mobile to start out here.
A lot has been said about Squamish turning into a bedroom community of Vancouver, and although I have no doubt that many residents commute to Vancouver - which doesn't, in my opinion, diminish their place in the community - most of the friends I've made so far have young families and work right here in the Howe Sound corridor. So I've come to the conclusion that Squamish is hip, much hipper than Whistler and much hipper than Vancouver, because it feels like home.