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...so I wanna make sure I haven't overlooked any options. Currently looking at a Giant XTC 27.5 hardtail at my LBS for $1700

Me:
5'-10", 240lbs, 50 yrs old

Style of riding best described as XC (Anthills in Houston, fire roads), moderately aggressive, non-competitive. I used to competitively road race in my teens and early 20's so I have a passion for the sport and appreciate quality equipment. I ride about 3 hours / week.

Budget $1500 to $2300.

I also need something that will work well on the paved bike path when the trails are muddy, which is about half of the time. One of the things I did not like about the Giant XTC was the highest gear ratio was 38x11. My current Specialized Stumpjumper 2005 has a 44x11 which is plenty to go fast with the wind on pavement. The LBS said I could I could put a chainring a couple of teeth larger on it in place of the 38.

Am I on the right track? Other suggestions?

Thanks,

Todd K.
 
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