Alright first off, I've been commuting on a mountain bike for a year now. My daily ride is 16 miles plus whatever errands need to be done. It's all flat, all on roads or paved trails. Other than the occasional pothole or patch of dirt or gravel on the path I would consider it very smooth. On the weekends I usually go for a trail ride in nice summer weather, but more often than not I pound out asphalt miles for fun and cardio. I don't often haul much more than a backpack or messenger bag of groceries plus what I need for work - paperwork, sometimes a change of clothes and a raincoat.
Long story short, I have this inexpensive mountain bike that has been GREAT for me. I don't ride trails enough to want anything more serious, and it's held up pretty well around town. The only thing I don't like about it (other than no fenders which is my fault, heh heh) is that it seems a little slow and cumbersome when I'm really trying to rack up miles on a longish ride on pavement. Since it turned out that I'm spending a lot less time on the trail than I am on the road, I'm thinking about a new bike to do double duty as my daily commuter and my weekend exercise bike. I'd also like to try some longer rides in my area, maybe solo or with a group. I'm kind of leaning toward buying a road bike and slapping some fenders and maybe a rack onto it for commuting, and then taking them off for distance/exercise rides. Do you think this is a good idea, or should I be looking into some sort of upright-posture commuter hybrid or even an entry-level cyclocross bike as a commuter?
I guess this is more of a ramble, trying to get my own thoughts straight than it is a question. I'm just wondering how much 'around town' comfort I would be giving up if I switched to a road bike for my commute, and if the added bonus of speed and the increased ease of longer-distance rides would be worth the trade. In any case, I'll be keeping my mountain bike as well. Ah well... ramble over.
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Thread: New bike for me?