Gunnar frames are EXCELLENT.... Steel is real! If you have any possibility of riding off-road, look at their Rock Tour frame. It is a mountain bike frame made exclusively for touring. I have one that I LOVE LOVE LOVE. I will be doing 500+ off-road miles in Northern Spain on it in the spring. This is their description from their web site:
So when the Adventure Cycling Association opened the Great Divide Trail, we decided to build the perfect bike for the explorer. We mixed in some old school goodness with some leading edge features.
With a shorter top tube than our race designs, you can enjoy a more comfy, upright fit for all day exploration. Our leading edge chainstay disc mounts let you mount a rear rack without interfering with the disc brakes (chainstay disc mounts are available only on sizes 16″ and up). And disc brakes make your life a lot easier in the mountains. No more overheating your rims on controlled descents. Plus, you get lots of tire clearance whether for 26 inch wheels or our no-extra-charge 29er designs. Rack mounts and triple water bottle boss sets give you lots of ways to secure your cargo. Our head tube gusset system adds strength and provides excellent fork clearance, whether you go rigid or mount today’s suspension forks.