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Old 06-18-06, 12:57 PM   #1
akakak
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need a new bike for tougher trails in western mass, wanna spend round $500

hey, i'm just getting back into mountain biking, and i've gone out to some east spots in western mass like agawam and chicopee state park and my friends using an old cannondale mountain from like 89 with no suspension. THe guys who have been taking me are more into going up to bachelor st. and some other tougher trails in amherst/ greenfield area so i need a better bike to be able to ride those trails and not slow them down or get off my bike and walk in the really tough spots. i'm a road biker so i'm in shape, and i'm not scared of the terrain really. i've already got a lot of hobbies that cost a lot of money, road cycling and a music studio soo i wanna spend like $500 but get the best deal i can. used is fine. any advice? i'm guessing i should stick to hardtails with front suspension for my pricerange. i've looked at low range giant, scott and trek bikes but i know theres no name companies like KHS and IronHorse through mailorder that i might get better components for a lower price.
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Old 06-18-06, 12:57 PM   #2
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[QUOTE=akakak]hey, i'm just getting back into mountain biking, and i've gone out to some east spots in western mass

=

EASY spots
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Old 06-18-06, 01:02 PM   #3
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KHS and Iron Horse are not no name brands, at least KHS is not, they have a whole X.0 equipped team where I live and their bikes are pretty common (and they are of high quality).

Whatever, I suggest you look at Specialized's Rockhopper (Base Model), its 520$ and its a very nice bike in comparision to other bikes in the same price range.

However, test ride all the bikes you can, find 2 or 3 you REALLY like and then come back here, components at the 500$ range won't vary much and then its the frame and handling of the bike that really matters.
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Old 06-18-06, 06:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akakak
hey, i'm just getting back into mountain biking, and i've gone out to some east spots in western mass like agawam and chicopee state park and my friends using an old cannondale mountain from like 89 with no suspension. THe guys who have been taking me are more into going up to bachelor st. and some other tougher trails in amherst/ greenfield area so i need a better bike to be able to ride those trails and not slow them down or get off my bike and walk in the really tough spots. i'm a road biker so i'm in shape, and i'm not scared of the terrain really. i've already got a lot of hobbies that cost a lot of money, road cycling and a music studio soo i wanna spend like $500 but get the best deal i can. used is fine. any advice? i'm guessing i should stick to hardtails with front suspension for my pricerange. i've looked at low range giant, scott and trek bikes but i know theres no name companies like KHS and IronHorse through mailorder that i might get better components for a lower price.
I went to umass '92-'96 and used to ride a '91 cannondale rigid mtn bike all over that area. The Robert Frost trail that runs through there is great, but it is rough. The college is a great place to find used bikes, although some of them could be stolen. Most of the new bikes in that price range are basically the same though.
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Old 06-18-06, 07:05 PM   #5
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You could also look at the specialized Hardrock series they range from $300 to around $700.
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Old 06-18-06, 07:06 PM   #6
mirona
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chone
KHS and Iron Horse are not no name brands, at least KHS is not, they have a whole X.0 equipped team where I live and their bikes are pretty common (and they are of high quality).

Whatever, I suggest you look at Specialized's Rockhopper (Base Model), its 520$ and its a very nice bike in comparision to other bikes in the same price range.

However, test ride all the bikes you can, find 2 or 3 you REALLY like and then come back here, components at the 500$ range won't vary much and then its the frame and handling of the bike that really matters.
I second the rockhopper. I actually have the Rockhopper Pro and really love it. I ride Batchelor Street every once in a while and fly through all the singletrack there. A hardtail is plenty good for most of the stuff in this area. If you want to check out some Specialized or Kona, come on down to Gravity Warehouse in Southwick and we can show you a few.

When you say Agawam, are you talking about Robinson State Park? I ride there all the time because it's riding distance from my house (and the shop for after-work rides). Tons of well-groomed trails and some hidden gems that very few people know about.

Some more excellent riding in the area can be found in Holyoke over East Mountain.
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Old 06-18-06, 07:08 PM   #7
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Check out the GT Avalanche 2.0 Disc. If you can get an 05 model left over, this would be the biggest deal I can think of. It's well equiped and for the money it's as good or better then most in it's price class. Excellent frame.

Dan
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Old 06-18-06, 08:37 PM   #8
akakak
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thanks for all the tips. i'm going to look into all of them. i have no drivers liscence so i can only ride when i can get a ride, and i live in east longmeadow, which is 15 minutes in from the highway so it's a pain for, basically, everyone to come grab me. i dont want to go out and spend $1400 on a bike i only get to use 4 times a year. (until i get my liscence back, then i'll be going all the time, becuase it's fun as hell)

yeah i went to robinson state park in agawam and did a quick run, the guy i was with only wanted to ride for a half hour or so. if i can get to southwick, i'd like to take you up on that and look at some of those bikes.....and take you up on tips for side trails in agawam...

ironically, i was just using that new pioneer valley bike map and looking at the recommended road bike roads and noticed your shop on the map. i want to take a road bike ride over there in southwick and suffield soon anyways becuase i'm sick of the same routes i've been doing, so maybe i'll do that some weekend and stop by the store.
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