Since a few people bumped it to the top, I thought this thread was owed an update. After thinking about this A LOT over the last several months, my wife and I made an offer on a piece of property a few weeks back. We didn't get it, but I think the process of thinking through all of these variables was very useful. What we decided after reading, and really taking to heart, all of these comments: Must haves: within 2.5 hours of home; reasonable year-round access (willing to snoesnow or snowmobile the last mile if needed, but no further); ability to pay cash (the number one complaint that I read was (a) it's too expensive, (b) and I'm not using it -- by paying cash we could alleviate a bit of that stress); recreation out the front door; reasonably close to water; reasonable Internet access because I do need to work on weekends frequently. Nice to haves: within 1.5 - 2 hours of a ski area. I don't ski and my wife only does once every 2-3 years, but it was something she mentioned. After several prospecting trips, we settled on the area west of Laramie. We looked at property around Centennial/Snowy Range Ski Area/Albany/WyoColo/down into northern Colorado. We ended up finding a piece of property that we both really liked. It was a 1/2 acre in a small neighborhood just off of Hwy. 230, north of WyoColo. The property had been for sale on and off for 6 years and the property had come down in price from $80K to $55K. We engaged a realtor who was really knowledgeable--even owned a cabin nearby herself--and made a cash offer of $25K and said it was our first and last. The property had other offers over the years (even submitted by the same realtor), but all had been in the sub-$15K range. The realtor felt like $25K was realistic and a fair price. The property had natural gas, electric, and a well. No covenants so we could put a camper up there for a summer or two while we saved up enough to build a cabin. Backed to the forest, 2/3 mile off of Hwy 230 and a reasonably good chance that someone would plow the road during the winter. We didn't get it, and there was no counter. I think what happened is that the prior owners had passed away and their relatives were trying to sell the property. There was probably internal disagreement over what it was worth and so when a "real" offer came in, the ones who wanted to hold on to it had to buy out the others. Or something, who knows. We heard there was another offer that was accepted the same week -- which seems odd on a piece of ground that has been up for sale for 6 years with no real movement. I doubt we'll ever know the true story, but that's my speculation. All of that being said, it was really fun and we'll keep looking. I'm sure something else will pop up in the next year and we'll have an even bigger war chest to work with. But definitely an all cash purchase that checks all of the boxes.