Complete newbie here (though I did ride bikes as a kid quite a lot).
I want to start biking again, maybe 2x per week on average, just on the trails that are in my area. I suspect some of the trails are paved, others are gravel. Nothing too crazy.
As you may have guessed, I already have a Phoenix Boulder mountain bike. This was purchased 25ish years ago and was never ridden much. It has spent most of it's life (and certainly the last 17-20 years) in the basement, safely away from any elements and wear and tear. But that's not necessarily a good thing...I imagine it needs some work to get it back in shape. A tune up, new tires, new brakes, and then some. Going by a price list at one bike shop, I figure this could be $300, possibly more.
For that amount I could buy a new bike. But does $300 buy a lot of bike nowadays? I can see that specialty bike shops tend to sell more expensive bikes, and that for $300 I'd have to go to a general sporting good store and purchase a brand like Reebok, CCM, or Schwinn. Is it possible that these brands make good bikes? I'm not even sure how good my bike is, but I know it was bought at a bike store and so I assume it's decent.
Any guidance you guys can offer is appreciated. If I keep my current bike, should I ask to get certain things done to it, or is it best to like the bike shop either go to town on it or give it a thorough inspection and then recommend service based on that?
My bike is the same model as this one: http://www.policeauctionscanada.com/...&aunbr=6853267