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Top 5 Trail Running Shoes


Updated June 19, 2009

Trail shoes are, for the most part, quite similar in construction to road running shoes. However, they have added traction and more durable uppersoles. Some road shoes work well as part-time trail shoes (e.g. the Saucony GRID Stabil -- see Top Motion Control Running Shoes below), while many trail shoes work well on the road (e.g. the Adidas Trail Reponse). Features to look for include: added traction, durability without too much weight, and motion control for running on uneven surfaces.

1. Adidas AdiSTAR Revolt

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Adidas makes a great trail shoe, the AdiSTAR Revolt. Its predecessor the Trail Response was around for many years, and this is the update. This is the shoe I wear, and I wear it both for trail and road running. It offers a snug fit, and good feel--not so much of a trail shoe that you can't wear it on the road.
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2. Brooks Adrenaline

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This new off-road shoe has strong support balanced with just the right cushioned feel. Water Resistant synthetic uppers provide excellent protection and comfort from the season's elements. This is a true all-weather, all-elements, stability-minded shoe.
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3. Asics Trail Sensor

A trail runner faces many unpredictable challenges from the environment. Improving forefoot traction and a water-resistant upper help navigate rugged terrain and keep your feet dry, while the "Trail Specific Impact Guidance System" ensure a comfortable ride. This is a solidly built shoe I would suggest for the avid trail runner who also wants a bit of extra cushion from their shoe.
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4. New Balance MT840

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This is one of the newer shoes that I've listed here. New Balance has always made a good line of strong, sturdy, and well balanced shoes--you can add this one to the list. This is a lightweight model that feels good the first time you slip it on. It's very comfortable, and can be used for both road and off-road surfaces.
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5. Saucony GRID Excursion

The Saucony GRID Excursion is a bulkier trail shoe that I would suggest to a more focused trail runner who is not using this as a multi-purpose shoe, but rather for a trail-only shoe. This shoe has excellent stability, and excellent traction.
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