Hi there - new to the forum.
I've been riding a HT for the last three years off and on, but I think I'm going to be doing a lot more riding since I cancelled my gym membership and justified using those saved funds towards buying a mtb!
I only ride a Trek 4300 and a Specialized Rockhopper. I feel like I'm riding a Harley in the Trek as it seems to me that I'm way laid back and in the Specialized I feel like I could go over the bars without notice - but I think I like the Specialized setup more - it feels more speedy and seems more geared for climbs.
My daily ride is down a paved road from about 1,121' to about 400' in about 1.5 miles or less. The climb back up is on packed dirt paths mainly because I don't trust the drivers who speed up the hills who are on their cells or are putting on make up. Whenever I am in the bike lane I like to bunnyhop onto the sidewalk and get out of the way of cars that seemingly aren't paying attention (I think this is why I'll never own a roadbike).
My other choice path is to ride 5.5 miles each way on the paved bike path to a singletrack along Folsom Lake. Otherwise, I ride as the pace car with my wife and daughter on weekends.
I know that I want a 29er and I have my eye on a 2012 Carve Expert that I think I can get for $1300. I also see that I could probably afford a used Niner Jet 9. Something FS with a Fox23 which I hear has a pretty study LO or close to LO and I could LO the front for the street riding. Why is this different that other HT/FS debates? I'm not a racer and I'm purely recreational. So I guess what I'm asking is which bike would I have more fun on? I like the HT because it's new and probably warranteed. But is seems like a FS would also be fun and more versatile so long as it doesn'f feel like a slinky as I'm trying to get up those steep hills - besides on climbs I'm usually in 1st gear and in the saddle. Speed is always fun, but on my singletrack excursions my hands go numb and I feel like my filings are going to fall out on the Rockhopper and Trek 4300. I'm not sure that the Carve Expert would be a noticeable improvement to the exposed roots and large rocks.
Anyway - really confused here - oh and I hear that some of the Jet 9 frames have a tendency to crack so I'm not sure if they fixed that issue or not or if there are model years I should avoid.
Thanks in advance,
I'm going to go fly down a hill and then trudge back up it.
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