I've been into MTB's since their inception...actually long before when we built our "stingrays" into bmx and downhill bikes in the 70s...even took shocks and forks off a motorcycle and grafted them to a bicycle for our first foray into dual susp around 1975.Look at a base model YT. Don’t waste your money on anything new that’s less than $2500. You’ll end up spending the money anyways to replace the cheese wheels and clunky components
Thanks for the heads up. I have not made a purchase yet. After some research I learned that about 2 grand would be a good starting point for me. I was thinking about a Trek hard tail, but the more videos I watched the more I realized I should just double my investment and go for full suspension. I had not looked at Canyon bikes. I have watched a bunch of good video reviews of the Polygon D7 which is $1,800 or so that is about where I set my budget at. I am not in a rush and am riding my used GT right now that is a pile, but gets me exercise.
If I had the places to ride in my area like I did when is lived in AZ or like there are in other parts of the country I would go big and spend a bunch of money. In my area I will mostly be riding basic trails with an occasional narly downhill. And with the limited amount of time I have to ride I can't justify spending huge money on a bike.3k is the bottom $ I would spend on any bike. Especially if you have any sort of prior skill set ( moto )