I'm kinda new to MTB but I think it's really fun and would like to do more riding. I don't currently have a bike but I've rented a few from my schools Outdoor Resource Center. I've rented a size 17 Full Suspension which was too small, a size 19 Full Suspension which was a little to small and a size 21 Hard-tail that I've got until Monday afternoon which goes right up to my crotch when I'm standing with both feet on the ground.
I'm 6 ft 1 inch and around 250lbs. My budget is around $1600 for a bike. I do need some shoes besides my Merrel hiking boots though and a helmet.
The only bike that's been suggested to me was a Diamondback Mason 1 but I would prefer something with Hydraulic brakes and a dropper post.
The bikes I've looked at so far:
Hardtail Salsa Timberjack 27.5 $1100
Full Suspension 2014 Santa Cruz Blur LT $900
I liked both but don't know which would be better to get. I really want a dropper post and a 1x11 gear setup instead of a 2x8. I don't know of the benefits to 1x11 vs 2x8 but it's less moving parts and less for me to worry about I guess. Both bikes were a size 20 I think but the Santa Cruz felt a tiny bit small and had no dropper post. The Salsa felt like my arms were to far forward and apart but it has a dropper post.
I think I would be doing mostly trail riding in Idaho and a bunch of uphill/downhill in Utah with my brother.
I don't really know what I'm doing with bikes and which would be better so any advice helps.