The Spec sucks, it's heavy and generally a bad frame. The Bighit is a good bike though, a good pedaler, but it might be a little heavy for your needs. It's hard to take on trail rides.
The Iron Horse 7point3 might be in your range, or the Haro Extreme (which was mentioned above). And the Kona Coiler might be a better idea than the Stinky because it's lighter and more geared for trails.
You may want to look at the Giant Faith series, the faith 3 in particular(its the least expensive). The suspension very is similar to the DW-Link 7point series. They pedal extreemly well for an 8in bike and have single crown forks for better turning radius. Super fun bike all around, and decent weight wise.
Call the www.dropnzone.com, Allen can help you build a bike using quality used and new parts. He set up a dirt bag for about $1500 before using used parts. Tell him what you want and how much you can spend.