Pint-Sized Gnar Shredder
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Somewhere between heaven and hell
Bikes: '09 Jamis Komodo, '09 Mirraco Blend One, '08 Cervelo P2C, '08 Specialized Ruby Elite, '07 Yeti AS-R SL, '07 DMR Drone
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As you said, you can use pretty much any bike for whatever kind of riding. Before I bought a road bike, I used a hardtail, no slicks, for 50 mile road rides. And I've seen a guy on a rigid singlespeed at Hall Ranch (figure since you're from Denver that might mean something to you). Now, I'm not about to suggest you take your bike to Keystone, but it will hold up just fine for long rides. Will it be the most efficient ride out there? No, but why don't you make sure you're definitely into these long rides before you go out ad buy a bike specifically for them? Plus that will give you a chance to figure out what characteristics you want in the bike.