1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    Need Help in Choosing a Bike

    So here is the deal. I just recently moved to Avon, CO (near Vail and Beaver Creek) and hear that there is outstanding mountain biking up here. I want to get into the sport but really know nothing about it at all. I am pretty athletic so I envision myself picking up the sport quickly or at least riding enough until I pick up the sport.

    But here is my dilema I have no clue what I am looking at or looking for. I certainly don't want to get a bike that I am going to use for a season then need to replace because it no longer fits what I am riding but at the same time I'm not looking to spend a ton of money on a top of the line bike because I just don't feel that I will be able to use the bike to its full extent.

    So I decided that I would like to spend between $600-$1000 on a bike. But I have no clue what I am looking at in bikes. I'm 5' 10.5", 155 lbs so I'm not sure if I need a large or medium frame. Do I want to go with full suspension or a hard tail? What is a good company to go with (Should I go with a large producer Trek, Specialized or a smaller company to get the best value)? Really I just need good suggestions on bikes so that I can get a feel for what is a good pick.

    Any advice is helpful.

  2. #2
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    your size should be a Medium or Large (i'm 5' 9" and fit a med perfectly) I had a large and it was just too big, but it may be perfect for you. Sometimes it really depends on the bike.

    My suggestion is to start with a larger manufacturer like Trek, Specialized, etc they have some nice bikes for that amount of $$$, and you may be able to get a 2006 model for a better price at the LBS. I would go with a FS that is designed for All mountain or Trail riding (not XC specific). They will have a bit more travel (5+) on the forks that can help build confidence on the decents. Once you really get into the sport you will swap bikes until you find the one you like.

    1st bike 1988 - 1994 Bridgestone (rigid)
    2nd bike 1994 - 2001 Specialized Stumpjumper (HT)
    3rd bike 2001 - 2004 Turner XCE (FS)
    4th bike 2004 - 2005 Intense Spider (HT custom)
    5th bike 2005 - 2006 Dean ACE - light (FS)
    6th bike 2006 - Yeti ASR SL

  3. #3
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    I think you should look for a hard tail from a larger company. I have a Cannondale F300 (I think it's called the F3 now [Cdale switched the name]). I got mine for about 600 bucks. Go to your LBS (local bike shop) I'm sure someone will be able to help you and get you set up and ready to ride. I suggest seeing what brands they carry, do some research on this site as far a bike reviews. Then narrow the search to a couple of bike models you like that are in your price range, go test ride them at the LBS so you and the LBS employee can find a middle ground on what you want, need and what you are willing to spend.

    Good luck, keep us posted on what bike you get.

    Steve

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