So I have been scouring the forums for everything I could and came up with a few bikes I have been looking at. I want a midrange hardtail that will keep me busy in the beginner/intermediate areas. My budget is 700.
Rockhopper Disc Would be nice if I could find an 08 or something cheaper than the new 09. It looks a little high priced unless anyone knows of a good online dealer
Giant Yukon Looks the most realistically priced and well available
Iron Horse Warrior This looks like the best bike to me but I am afraid the sizes offered might be to small. I am 6'2" and am not really sure on what size I should be.
Can I get a trek 4500 with discs or something? That could be a contender to perhaps.
I will go to the lbs tomorrow to fit some bikes and see for sure but I am thinking 21"
You won't find a new rockhopper online. Specialized doesn't allow they dealers to do any internet sales of their bikes. PLus it's better to buy from a LBS that will be there if you need service. That's worth a few bucks in the long run. Regardless of which bike you choose I'd find out where the local dealers are for each of them and check em out first.
You would be surprised. I'm 6'1" and I thought I would need the bigger frames too but I ended up with a Trek 4300 (non disc) at 19.5". I did try the 21" and when standing over the bike the top tube was all up in "my junk". Of course, if you are going to go to an LBS and check them out, you will see which size fits you better. Trek does not offer the 4500 in a disc version. If you're set on disc brakes then that's a no go.
The fork on the Giant isn't all that great. The Trek 4500, Rockhopper Comp and The Iron Horse all have better forks. Personally, I think for the price, the 4500 has the best components but no disc brakes. If discs are a must and you are seriously considering the Specialized you linked despite the price I would take that over the Giant. Specialized has better brakes and fork and that's worth the extra bucks over the giant if you can afford it.
So my (probably unworthy) opinion:
If disc brakes are a must, I would go with the Rockhopper Comp Disc.
If disc brakes are not a must, then check out the 4500.
Thanks, there is a dealer here that does trek, specialized, and giant so I will go try a few out for sizing. If 19.5 is in fact good I might go for the Ironhorse but I am assuming it might be a little small.
Will the rockhopper base or trek 4500 keep me wanting more with some disc brakes?
As far as dry stopping power, the V brakes seem to be just as good or at least close to disc brakes. The disc brakes will really stand out if you are constantly riding in wet conditions or are on muddy trails. The disc brakes weren't important to me since I am just starting out and I don't anticipate any kind of riding where the disc brakes are necessary. It's an expense I just wasn't willing to pay for at this time. I would have gone with the 4500 but it was just too far out of my budget.