So I just started cycling and love it. I'm using an old bike though and really need an upgrade. I have only been going about 10 miles a day but hope to increase that and would like to ride in a few 50-80 tours next summer. I know that's a big goal! I'm looking for rec commendations on bikes though. I don't even know what type I need! I don't like the road bikes because of the handle bars but Im not quite sure if I need a mountain bike if I'm mostly on the towpath and occasionally hilly roads. I'm 5' 6". Any info on styles, brands, etc would be helpful! I don't want something cheap again, but I don't want to necessarily pay 1000 dollars either. Thanks!
Litespeed Ti Mtb, BikeE Recumbent, Cannondale H600 Hybrid,
Don't want road bike with drop handlebars and skinny tires. --- too fragile
Don't want mtn bike with knobby tires, suspension --- too heavy
What you need is a HYBRID.
They have fatter tires than road bikes, more comfortable but not as fast. Thay have triple chainrings that allows you to climb hills easier. Their upright riding position makes riding more comfortable. Look for one that allows you to put racks and panniers for your future tours.
Now that you have narrowed down the type of bike you need. Go to the hybrid section of this forum or visit your local bike shops to see which hybrid suits your needs and budget.