I bought a 2004 Gary Fisher Marlin, upgraded to Deore XT and LX components, Easton EA50/EA30 seatpost, handlebar and stem and Selle Italia seat. Happy as a clam. The bike is nice and light, nimble as a mountain goat and nothing beats a hardtail for me. Smart shopping on ebay saved a bundle and I did most of the tooling myself. Tires are Bontrager Revolt SS (low rolling resistance) for street and hardpack or Bontrgaer knobbies for the rough stuff on the stock Maverick rims. Deore XT Vbrakes rock. Crank Brothers Eggbeater CR and shimao shoes.
I'm 6.2 275 pounds so definitely Clyde Material. I removed most of the weight off the bike. I carry a Camerlbak M.U.L.E. on my back with some tools, a cell phone and a bar maybe. Average temperature on the island is about 100 Degrees F (www.curacao.com).