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Trail Running Course

21 Trail Running Shoe Companies

Most everyone is familiar with road shoes but who makes trail running shoes?running-trail

Some of the your well known road running companies produce one or two models but there are also some companies that may not be as well known that focus their entire line for those that want to play in the dirt.

Trail Shoe Vs. Road Shoe – What is the difference?

A few subtle differences between a road and trail shoe include:

  • trail shoe often has more aggressive tread (varying degree depending on the shoe)
  • trail shoe may offer more support and impact protection
  • trail shoe may offer some water resistance
  • trail shoes are generally a bit heavier than you typical road shoe

Do You Need Trail Shoes To Run On Trails?

The short answer is no. Get out there and play with whatever shoes you currently run in. You will see all types of shoes out on the trail.

The List

Here is an inconclusive list of trail running shoes companies and models that I was able to hunt down.

[11/22/2010: The list continues to grow!]

  • Brooks – Cascadia and ASR.
  • Nike – Air Pegasus, Air Max Trailbreak, Zoom Structure Triax.
  • Adidas – AdiStar Revolt, Supernova Riot 365, Kanadia Trail 2, Kanadia Trail, Response.
  • Asics – Gel-trail Sensor 3 WR, Gel-Trabuco 12 G-TX, GT-2140 Trail, Gel-Trabuco 12 WR, Gel-Arctic WR, Gel-Trail Attack 5 WR, Gel-Kahana 3, Gel-Enduro 5.
  • INOV-8 – roclite 295, roclite 305, roclite 312, roclite 315, roclite 320. Note: These are the designated trail running shoes but INOV8 also contain other shoes that may be suitable for trail running.
  • Altra Running – Zero drop, cushioned running shoes.
  • Columbia
  • Mizuno – Wave Ascend 4
  • Montrail – Streak, Wildwood TR, Mountain Masochist, Mountain Masochist GTX, Hardrock mid, Hardrock
  • New Balance – Men: MR790, MT840, MR904, MT609, MT875  Women:WT1110, WT840, WT909, WR904, WT609, WT875
  • Pearl Izumi – syncroSeek WRX, Peak XC, syncroSeek
  • Puma – Trailfox
  • Salomon – XT Wings, S-lab XT Wings, XT Hawk, XT Wings GTX, XA Comp 3, XA Comp 3 GTX, XA Pro 3D Ultra M+, XA Pro 3D Ultra, XA Pro 3D Ultra GTX, Speed Comp, SpeedCross 2
  • Saucony – Grid Cohesion NX TR, ProGrid Xodus, Progrid Guide TR 2, Grid Excursion TR3
  • Teva – Romero Trail, X-1 Evolution, X-1 Control 2
  • Under Armour – Mirage, Chimera
  • Keen – Obsidian WP, Powerline, Shellrock, Shellrock WP
  • GoLite – Shadow Dragon, Sun Dragon, Set Wing, Storm Dragon, Trail Fly, Spike Tail
  • La Sportiva – Ultranord GTX, Lynx, Wildcat, Skylite, Sonic, Imogene, Fireblade, Crosslite
  • Merrell – ST Stature, Cruise Control, Overdrive
  • The North Face – Ultra 104 GTX XCR, Ultra 104, Cooper’s Hill GTX XCR, Betasso, Ultra 105 GTX XCR, Voza, Chinscraper, Wolf Ridge
  • Vasque – Aether, Aether Tech, Blur, Celerator, Mercury, Velocity, Velocity VST
  • Scarpa – Apex GTX, Raptor
  • Oboz – Burn, Ignition

Visual candy for some of the shoes:

I am spent. My eyes hurt from looking at so much tread. For being such a small sport relative to road running, there definitely are quite a few trail running shoes to choose from. It was interesting to look at the wide range available from road-like shoes to those with agressive fangs that seemed to want to tear into the terrain.

I would like to give the Brooks ASR a try since it is the trail version of the road Adrenaline that I normally wear which fit like a glove.

Which trail shoes do you like? Are there any that you would like to try out?

If you are aware of any companies I may have missed, please let me know in the comment section below.

Running Warehouse (Endurance Buzz visitor discount on most shoes) and Amazon carry a wide selection of many of these shoes.

Be active – Feel the buzz!

David –

About the author

David Hanenburg David Hanenburg is the passionate dirt-lovin' creator of Endurance Buzz and has been playing in the endurance sports world since 2000 after knockin' the dust off of his Trek 950 hardtail thanks to a friend asking to go ride some local dirt. In 2007 he ran his first ultra on the trails and fell in love with the sport and its people. For more information on David's endurance sports journey, check out the About page.

3 Responses to “21 Trail Running Shoe Companies”

  1. on 03 Sep 2010 at 1:32 pm François

    What about Puma trailfox shoes?

    They used to have a waterproof version with Event membrane.

  2. on 06 Sep 2010 at 3:09 pm David Hanenburg

    Hey Francois – Yes, that needs to be added to the list. Thanks for making me aware of it. 🙂

  3. on 02 Dec 2010 at 2:37 pm Jeremy Howlett

    Awesome to see we made the list! Keep your eyes out for the zero drop Lone Peak trail shoe this coming 2011.