I have recently been going Mountain Biking in the trails around here. Lots of fun! I have just been borrowing friends bikes but now I want my own of course. What would y'all recommend for a good, fairly cheap first bike. I would like to keep it to about ~$300 but if it REALLY WORTH IT i might be able to stretch to $500, but that's it, at least until I get another job. I would also not want to worry about it too much in case I take a spill. What should I look for? Any brands that are better of brands I should stay away from? Any other suggestions? Thanks Edit: I read that, for under $1000, it is best to stick to hardtails. Is this true?