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Newbie MTB Question

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Looking to purchase a mountain bike. I know this probably has been touched upon before but I'll throw it out there anyway. Recently moved to Northern Utah and am looking to get into some mt biking. Have done a little before (mt. snow, vermont-rented). Not looking for anything to extravagent (or expensive). Something I can ride singletrack mostly. No real hucking/dropping involved, some uphill climbs. I'm 6', 175lbs. Hoping not to spend more than $1200-$1500. Not really sure where to start looking or what to look for. Should I try renting initially? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 7
Renting for a weekend is a good idea. But, take a look here, also:

http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?p=297470&highlight=local+bike+shop+ trails+conditions+kind+of+riding#post297470

Read the whole thread, too, everybody made very good points.
post #3 of 7
For $1200-$1500 you can get a pretty nice full-suspension bike, which is what I would do. I've only ridden in Utah once (park City what a great place to ride), but obviously it's gonna be hilly, so you want to make sure you get one that doesn't suck at climbing. I think the Specialized FSRs are some of the best in that regard. I could offer plenty of other suggestions, but that's where I'd go first. Make sure you get one with disc brakes.
post #4 of 7
Go read MTBR.com (mountain bike review). You should be able to get a good cross country (XC) bike with XT or similar level components, disc brakes for the price range you are looking at. I would suggest also going to WrenchScience.com and do an on-line fitting to find out what size bike would work best for you. Depending on how much climbing you want to do (are you doing this because you also want to push yourself hard and get into shape?) you might want to go with a light-weight hard-tail. If only moderate climbing, maybe a somewhat light bike with around 3-4" of rear travel with a shock that can be set pretty stiff and 4-5" of front travel.

A good shop will let you test ride bikes. We've even had manufacturers show up here at trail-heads for demo days (same as skiing) where we could test ride bikes on the trails we actually ride. Ask your bike shop if they know of any events like this.

There are good mass produced bikes out there from GT, Jamis, Gary Fisher, Trek and many others that should be in your sights.
If you aren't already good at wrenching on bikes or are handy enough to want to do it from the start, spend the extra few bucks and buy from a Local Bike Shop (LBS) that has a good reputation for working on bikes (ask around). You don't want to buy on-line or from a talentless shop and find that your bike needs work right out of the box, and not have someone you can trust to work on it. Usually a good shop will include the first year of service and tune/ups with the price of the bike.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for the advice/links. Bike shopping is definatley a lot harder than ski shopping imo. Many more variables. Will probably head down to some local bike shops this week and get some more feedback. Any Utahns know of some decent shops north of SLC (Ogden area)?
post #6 of 7
The Bike Shoppe on washington is my favorite one around here. Canyon Sports is also pretty decent. Don't rule out SLC shops because you can't find every brand in Ogden.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks zzz. Heard the Bike Shoppe was decent. Probably going to hit it up w/in the next couple days and see what they have/have to say.
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