How do you deal with all the choices?
So this fall I'm going to be going to school in lovely Boulder, CO. And here's my issue: I need a mountain bike, but I don't have too much money. Any bike over $2000 is out of my budget.
Anyways, I consider myself pretty well-informed as for the bikes available. However, the terrain there permits me to do just about any type of riding possible. That poses a problem: what kind of bike do I get, then?
I've only done trail riding so far. I like it, but I wish the stuff around here wasn't so tame. So the question is, do I get an XC bike, all-mountain, or freeride? I'm trying to anticipate limited future funds and future riding preferences. Should I go hardtail for speed and cost, or FS for control in technical terrain? Ideally I'd have a stable of 6-7 bikes, but that won't happen.
I'm agonizing over this, and I keep changing my bike preferences every day. I really like Kona and Specialized, but that doesn't narrow it down much. Anybody in similar situations, or go riding around there, and have any advice?