Howdy folks. I've been out of the new bike scene for many a year. I bought a Novara Arriba from REI way back in the day, abused the hell out of it, then put too many thousands of miles on it. Since then I've been in the US Army, got out, met a girl, married said girl, had a kid. Nearly 15 years later, replacing nearly everything except the frame, I finally get to buy a few bike.
I'm no longer a spy 18 year old doing 10 ft drops. Instead I'm 30, 6'2", and sitting heavy at 225lbs. I'm not huge, but I have a mildly aggressive ride style and if there is a curb to bunny hop, a dirt mound to jump, or a log to claw over, I probably will.
What out there in the way of bikes would suit my road, single track off trail, and riding with the kids, while staying under $1000? I've looked at the Kona Hoss, Novara Ponerosa, Canondale 29'r 4, Trek 6500, Specialized Rockhopper, and Marin Palisades. I'd like to get the most for my money of course; Hydraulic instead of cable disc brakes, LX instead of Deore or lower, ...
Any recommendations in particular?