UPDATE: I bought the Trek 7000 WSD. Thanks to all who helped me choose and who wished me well with my new bike.
I'm getting back into riding after 17 years. Last bike was a mountain bike. I'm now older (43), 5'0'. I know nothing about bikes anymore so I need some advice.
I tried the 14" $359 Trek 7000 WSD at my LBS today. It seemed nice. This one has a rigid fork. The next one I liked was the $539 7200 WSD model. I didn't like the color on the middle 7100.
Questions: If I'm basically riding on the bike path in my neighborhood (a scenic path separate from the road) and the bumpy pavement and gravel shoulder of the main highway, would I need the 7200 for $200 more just to get the suspension?
Is Trek a good manufacturer? Are the 7000 and 7200 WSD good bikes?
Can anyone recommend a comparable model? I tried the Specialized Carmel, Vita, and Globe but I'm not too sure about these because the seats were uncomfortable and the Vita felt a little stretched out. THe other i might consider is the Trek Navigator.
Sizes Lowstep 14, 16, 18.5"
Frame Alpha White Aluminum
Fork High tensile steel, curved blades
Wheels Alloy hubs; Matrix 550, 36-hole alloy rims
Tires Bontrager Select Invert, 700x35c; 27tpi
Shifters SRAM MRX twist, 7 speed
Front Derailleur Shimano C102
Rear Derailleur Shimano TX51
Crank Shimano M151 48/38/28 w/chainguard
Cassette Shimano 14-34, 7 speed w/spoke protector
Pedals Nylon platform
Saddle Bontrager Suburbia FIT
Seat Post Alloy adjustable suspension
Handlebars Bontrager Approved, steel, 50mm rise
Stem Alloy, adjustable rise
Headset Threaded w/semi-cartridge bearings, sealed
Brakeset Tektro V w/Tektro alloy levers, Kraton inserts