Although I have been mountain biking for a while, I am a new-bee when it comes to knowledge of components, buying bikes, etc. I had an old bike that was donated to me years ago when a friend of mine decided to upgrade his. I rode that bike to the ground, and although I have taken a bit of time off, I am ready to get back in the game and feel its time I get a new bike. My old bike was a Trek and I was pretty happy with it and therefore am looking at Trek and their Gary Fisher lines but am open to other suggestions as well.
Here's the info:
1) I would like to keep my spending to about 500-600 but can go a little higher if it's really going to make a significant difference in the long run.
2) Here are the bikes I am looking at:
- 2010 Gary Fisher Marlin
- 2011 TreK Tarpon
- 2011 Trek / Gary Fisher Advance
- 2011 Trek 3900 Disc
- 2010 Trek 4300
I really like the GF Marlin, based on the reviews that I have read, but its a little bit over my budget and I am not really sure how different it is, if any, from the others I've listed. They all look pretty similiar, components seem similiar, but then again I don't know. What do you guys think?
3) My riding style: I do a bit of combination pavement / gravel / off road biking. I ride on a paved trail that is very hilly (mostly uphill) about 50 - 60% of the time (cardio workouts). The other 40% is spent going over dirt trails in the woods at some local regional parks (for fun). Nothing too technical, but I do get some air or ride over tree logs every now and then (less than 10% of the time).
4) I prefer a hardtail bike over a full suspension
5) I am 34 years old, 6'1, and about 240lbs, but should be down to 210 lbs soon, which is my usual weight.
6) Any source, currently looking at LBS, used online, craigslist etc.
7) Open to all suggestions,
Thanks, I appreciate any and all suggestions...
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