Aluminum or Steel Frame for Touring?

I am ultimately looking to have a bike that is good for both everday commuting and touring with panniers/racks long distance with camping. From what I've read on the internet steel frames are more forgiving and ride smoother. The guy at my local bike shop tells me aluminum frames have more flex and ride... show more I am ultimately looking to have a bike that is good for both everday commuting and touring with panniers/racks long distance with camping. From what I've read on the internet steel frames are more forgiving and ride smoother. The guy at my local bike shop tells me aluminum frames have more flex and ride better. I don't know if he's just trying to make a sale (Giant dealer) or to trust him, unfortunately the staff there are all just racers not tourers. If you can recommend any brands/models to check out that'd be good. From my research thus far I am in love with Co Motion bikes, just not the price! I'm looking at $1000 max for a good touring bike. Thanks!
Update: Also note, I'm 6'5" 250 lbs (hoping to trim that down over the summer!). So strength to bear that weight is a factor as well.
9 answers 9