Join Date: Sep 2009
Bikes: Masi (retired), Giant TCR, Eisentraut, Jamis Aurora Elite, Zullo (trainer bike), Cannondale, 84 Stumpjumper, Waterford(N+1), Tern D8 (N+1), looking for a Ti frame
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I own a 2009 Jamis Aurora Elite, rode it last week on a week long supported tour still carried some of my own gear in rear panniers and front bag. It rode well, no problems with the brifters, I didn't like the handlebars because they narrowed down too close to the stem and I had to replace the handlebars to attach aerobar clipons.
After riding hills this past week, it appears that the gearing may be a little too high on the Jamis and I may look my options to lower the gearing ( a smaller granny gear or going to a Tiagra setup with 9 speed rear end and wider range cassette.
Looking at the Salsa (I am not aquainted with this bike) it doesn't have braze-ons for a low rider front rack. The one on the Salsa site only had a double not a triple crank.
The Aurora elite seems to be made more for touring where the Salsa site say that the casseroll is for credit card touring.
Sorry but I didn't answer your question about which provides "the more smoother, comfortable enjoyabe ride" I have never ridden a Salsa before. But looking at the configuration it may be a toss up, since the Salsa has wider tires which would tend to make it a cushier ride.
I think these are two completely different bikes and if you are doing loaded touring get the Jamis and the salsa would be limited to day tours, credit card touring and ultralight touring.