I am looking to start riding again and decided it was time to get rid of my old Nishiki that has served me well. I am big on riding for fun and just exploring different parts of NY but with this new bike I would like to possibly check out a few of the parks that offer some off-roading opportunities (i.e Cunningham Park for any familiar with NYC). Most of the time (80-90%) I will be riding for fun/fitness and just exploring but I do like to take stairs and other non-road urban terrain when it seems like more fun.
I am pretty much set on a Hybrid but I am not sure the type of Hybrid to get.
These are the bikes I am looking at with a suspension:
Specialized Crosstrail Sport Disc
Giant Roam 2
Trek 8.3 DS
I am also looking at these other Hybrids:
Trek 7.4FX (Will go with a 7.2 or 7.3 if it ends up being the bike for me)
Cannondale Quick 4
Sirrus Sport (Possibly the Elite)
While I really like the Crosstrail Sport Disc, if I can get a better bike for me that is lighter and geared more towards what I will be using it for I will go that route. I am wondering if I go with the 7.4 or the Quick 4, how much "off-roading" can I really do with it? If I do go with a Crosstrail, is the loss of speed noticeable from a more road-type hybrid?
Any advice is greatly appreciated.