Excellent balance, lightweight with a great streamlined light feel to it, great climber! Excellent customer service from small bike shop in Dallas! Lifetime chromoly steel frame warranty from Kona.
Headset came loose during break-in period - had shop adjust it for no charge. Rear brake cable end contacts back of foot - shop also fixed the cable end so it wouln't get in my way. Handle grips slowly slide outward - shop fixed this with hairspray to bond the grips to the handlebar - works like a charm!
This is my first middle of the road mountain bike, and so far, so good. I chose this model because I wanted a steel frame (I absolutely hate the aluminum frame hangers, after busting one 15 miles out in the Ozarks - I'll never buy another aluminum frame bike). Plus I wanted a hard tail for climbing efficiency, but a front fork for less fatique in the arms on those long journeys over rough terrain. Plus I didn't want to spend any more than $700. This bike fit all that criteria with the added plus of a lifetime frame warranty. I've ridden this bike about a dozen times now over roots, rocks, small jumps, etc in a semi-agressive manner and am very pleased with it. I may upgrade later to a tougher fork later since I'm a heavier rider (205 lbs) on a short frame (16") bike.