Best Neutral Trail Running Shoes

10 Best Neutral Trail Running Shoes for 2019

Bitten by the trail bug? Well, hopefully not bitten by bugs ON the trail, but by the joy and freedom that comes with running breathtaking trails – literally and figuratively. Running trails makes for a different experience than running on pavement, from the varied terrain to the need for additional ankle support as you find your footing on a technical course. Trail shoes come in a variety and shapes and sizes, but all will be specially designed to adapt to trail conditions. Read of for the coming year’s best neutral trail running shoes:

Number 10

Merrell Bare Access Flex

Merrell Bare Access Flex

Thinking of doing a trail run that will take you through creeks or marshes? The outsole of the flex perform excellently in wet conditions, with a grippy rubber outsole with anatomical grooves to grab on to whatever is underfoot, even if it’s slippery! The FLEXconnect technology in the midsole is denser than what most shoes have by way of foam cushioning, specifically to better handle lateral movements when you’re avoiding rocks and funky looking branches underfoot. Lastly, the Hyperlock heel counter will keep you secure as you zip down the trail.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 9

Altra Lone Peak

Altra Lone Peak

Just look at this shoe and you’ll know it means trail business, from its tough outsole to its Gaiter Trap in the upper so that you can easily attach gaiters for serious trail excursions. The A-Bound midsole cushioning helps distribute weight evenly throughout the foot to avoid aches or pain buildup. The webbed upper is made of a breathable mesh that will air out your sweaty (maybe even stinky) feet while still keeping trail debris away.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 8

Saucony Peregrine

Saucony Peregrine

Runners who enjoy a grounded running experience will enjoy the lower 4mm heel-to-toe drop of the Peregrine as they explore new heights on the mountain. Gripping lugs in the outsole keep the shoe for slipping on tricky surfaces while still allowing flexibility to encourage a runner’s natural stride. The open construction of the upper encourages airflow while also maintaining a snug and comfortable fit.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 7

Altra King MT

Altra King MT

“Steady as you go” was the tester takeaway for the King MT: these will keep you feeling secure and steady as you take on trails that are anything but. The TrailClaw gripping lugs in the outsole, true to name, grip the ground surface from all directions with an intensity like cat claws in your thigh. The Footlock midfoot strap in the upper adds to the snug and supported feel in this shoe. For the best trail shoes, neutral runners have a friend in the King!

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or get it on Amazon

Number 6

Hoka One One Challenger ATR

Hoka One One Challenger ATR

This shoe is maximalist – maximum support, functionality, and flair (those black and orange colors!). One feature often sought in men’s and women’s neutral trail running shoes is room to spread your toes, and the Challenger allow your toes to splay naturally to avoid cramping and improve balance. The full ground contact outsole help you smoothly transition from heel to toe during your gait cycle. I challenge you to try these out!

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or get it on Amazon

Number 5

Brooks Cascadia

Brooks Cascadia

The name alone makes you think of cascading waterfalls that you’ll see to your left on your next trail run – with that relaxing image in mind, the Cascadia come in both normal and wide widths, so this shoe really is for everyone who wants to give trails a go. Testers appreciated the comfortable BioMoGo DNA midsole foam for its ability to maintain a cushiony feel over a long run, with the added bonus of being made from environmentally friendly materials!

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or get it on Amazon

Number 4

Altra Superior

Altra Superior

When considering the best women’s and men’s neutral trail running shoes, the Superior made a superior showing on the ranking list. Altra-enthusiasts love the zero-drop from heel to toe, allowing your foot to remain on a level plane as you test out new trails. The shoe is lightweight and breathable, while still maintaining admirable structure and durability. The Natural Ride system of the midsole allows a custom-fit feel and enables the foot to adapt its motion pattern during a run.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 3

New Balance Leadville

New Balance Leadville

Named for one of the most grueling distance races in the world, the Leadville are built to withstand anything – and we mean A.NY.THING. The midsole REVlite cushioning is responsive and lightweight, and a medial post helps keep your form from breaking down when you’re many (or too many) miles into a trail race. The new and improved upper still keeps debris out while also boasting a toe bumper to protect your toes. Plus the shoe is extra roomy to account for inevitable long-distance runner foot swelling.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 2

Merrell Trail Glove

Merrell Trail Glove

True to its name, runners love the glove-like fit of this trail shoe. Between the light cushion of the midsole and the durable outsole is a Trail Protect pad that protects the foot beneath from sharp rocks and twigs while also distributing pressure throughout the entire foot. The Glove, similar to the design of some Asics neutral trail running shoes, have a lightly padded collar and tongue for added cushion and security.

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or get it on Amazon

Number 1

Salomon S-Lab Sense Ultra

Salomon S-Lab Sense Ultra

The latest version of this #1 rated shoe comes in bright red and black – sure to stand out (and get a bit scuffed up) on the trails! This shoe has an ideal mix of snugness and forefoot space to keep the foot in place without squishing your toes. This shoe transitions well from trail terrain to pavement for the dual-interest runner, and the asymmetrical lacing system is quick and easy for you to get right out the door. Have fun!

Find it on shoekicker


or get it on Amazon