Just read andyfromotley post for newbies, was very useful for deciding what sort of bike I need but would like to get some advice on specific models. I want to get a bike for commuting to work (its a relatively short commute) and for using off road on relatively nice terrain (canal paths, trails etc.). As such I've been looking in the hybrid category. Went to Evans cycles and the guy there pointed out a few different models; the one I had seen before and was most interested in was the Specialized Crosstrail (£350) but he was definitely trying to pull me toward some of the more expensive models (£400-£600) - to be fair he was being very helpful and took us through the different brakes, front forks etc. and their effect on the weight and ride vs the utility they add. I don't really want to spend too much as trying to save money atm, but would if there is going to be a significant difference between the tiers, so my questions are: Is the Specialized Crosstrail any good? Are there other "better" bikes in this price bracket? Do I need to spend more, am I likely to notice the difference? Cheers all, sorry for the longish post.