In the next year I am going to be moving to New Orleans to start seminary. After that my wife and I will be moving to either Honduras, India, or Germany to start mission work. I'm going to be selling my car in a few months to pay for a bike and the mission work.
I need opinions on which bike to buy that will meet the following criteria:
-26 in wheels
-last me like 30 years
-have eyelets for racks and fenders
-be able to take road and non-technical singletrack
(pretty much a steel expedition touring bike)
I'm leaning towards a 62 cm Surly LHT with 26in wheels, but I have thought about a Surly Troll, Salsa Fargo (has 29in wheels), fixing up an old 90's steel MTB, or fixing up my Jamis commuter 1(has 700c wheels and too small of frame). I'm open to drop bars or trekking bars, but prefer drop handlebars. I want the bike to do everything okay. This is pretty much the bike of a lifetime with a budget.
What would you do?