I went to the LBS to ask about fixing up my old Cannondale Mountain Bike for riding in the snow and afer talking about options for a while he showed me a brand-new looking used Mongoose 29" mountain bike (no suspension, disk brakes) that he went over and adjusted everything. They were selling it for $200. I'd rather have my old Cannondale fixed up, but the Mongoose was, surprisingly, a great fit -- at least in the store. Besides, I could fix up th old Cannondale in other ways instead. Because the roads are covered with snow I couldn't test drive it. $200 isn't much of a discount over list for a used bike but just knowing they went over it and it is in perfect working order makes the price not a big issue.
What do people think, would the Mongoose be worth picking up and beating on during the winter months when it is snowing? Typically I would only use it for riding a couple miles each way to the supermarket. If I did get it, once spring comes around, I might chain it up outside at work with all of the student bikes to be used for "lunch commutes."
I'm pretty sure it did originally come from walmart -- which is/was my hesitation. The guy at the LBS did say that some of the components were the same as the low end bikes they sell (They mostly sell Trek, but I didn't think to ask him what components or what bikes he was comparing at the time). I'd love to get a brand new LBS bike to turn into a winter bike, but not enough to pay for one. The local craigslist market is horrible so not many used options.