Top 5 wear tested trail minimalist shoes of 2013

Top 5 wear tested trail minimalist shoes of 2013

As most of you already know, minimalist running shoes are now in their third generation and benefiting all runners whether they have transitioned to minimalist shoes or not. And with that come choices that are too confusing for the uninformed runner. We have already published our top 5 road minimalist shoes and top 5 casual minimalist shoes.

Now we have compiled our top five list of the best minimalist trail shoes for running on varied terrains. These shoes are all zero drop and designed for trail running. All of them have breathable and soft uppers with some protection from the elements, is lightweight and flexible, but also have wide toe boxes for your toes to splay.

Merrell Ascend Glove

The Merrell Ascend Glove brings you a natural trail running experience without the pounding of the hard ground. A zero-drop, low profile platform offers just enough cushioning to protect you from impact, while a lugged Vibram outsole provides durable traction over tricky terrain.

Available on Merrell online store.

Mizuno Wave EVO Ferus

Run closer to the trails you love with the Mizuno Wave EVO Ferus. Featuring a low offset, low profile platform and forefoot Wave technology for cushioning, this shoe encourages a midfoot landing and an efficient stride. An aggressive outsole maintains traction on varied terrain while a trail-ready upper protects you from the elements.

Available on Mizuno and Zappos online stores.

Puma FAAS 100 TR

The Puma FAAS 100 TR is built for the trail runner who’s looking to feel light, fast, and the earth beneath his feet. With the least amount of cushioning in the FAAS running range, the FAAS 100 TR is built more as a racing shoe than an everyday trail running shoe. This zero drop minimalist trail shoe is intended to help strengthen a runner’s feet and lower extremities over time. But the FAAS 100 TR traction, durability, and protective upper can stand up to whatever the great outdoors decides to dish out.

Available on Puma and Zappos online stores.

Skechers GObionic Trail

Take your love of natural running to the max in the Skechers GObionic Trail. This zero-drop, ultra-minimal performance running shoe features a construction design developed using advanced biomechanical innovations inspired by the human body. Eighteen bio-responsive Resalyte cushioning zones added to key flex points of the foot deliver protection without compromising responsiveness, while a lightly padded collar and tongue ensure comfort and personalized fit. The exoFit mesh and synthetic upper reacts and moves like a second skin, surrounding the foot with supportive and breathable materials. Skechers M-Strike technology encourages a midfoot strike, while the Resagrip shock-absorbing midsole and GOimpulse outsole lend natural responsiveness with just the right amount of protection to your daily workout.

Read the full Skechers GObionic Trail review here.

Available on Skechers and Zappos online stores.


Engineered around the foot from the inside-out, SKORA CORE has an asymmetrical design with an integrated tongue and features a perforated Pittards goatskin leather upper. The combination liner features seamless Agion antimicrobial mesh with a Pittards sheepskin leather collar lining for ultimate comfort and performance. With a revolutionary unibody IBR outsole, SKORA CORE offers incredible road–feel, and superior anatomical fit.

Read the full SKORA CORE review here.

Available on SKORA online store.