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Life of trail runners
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Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Life of trail runners on 04/22/2013 07:29:55 MDT Print View

As a runner I tend to assume 4-500 miles for my shoes; my previous hiking Zamberlan boots are years old with a few thousand miles on them.

Not thru hiking, but with short weekend trips a few times a month, how long should I expect my trail runners to last? Same as my pavement running shoes?

I ask because my Salomon XA 3D Ultra 2s only have a few hundred miles on them (if that) and they are losing tread in the forefoot already. I expected at least a full season based on my relatively easy midwest hiking and only ~30 miles each weekend...granted they have a 100-mile Winds trip on them, but other than that just rocks and tree roots and nothing majorly stressful.

Here There
(cowexnihilo) - MLife
Re: Life of trail runners on 04/22/2013 07:51:55 MDT Print View

I tend to get more miles out of road shoes than the same shoe used on trail, but it will depend on how rough and rocky your local trails are, the amount of mud and water you put them through, etc.

There are also big differences in the durability of different shoes, and some shoes will have issues that you may be willing to put up with longer in a trail shoe (or vice versa), like mesh side panels blowing out pretty early in the shoe's life.


Nicholas Viglione
( - MLife
Life Expectancy on 04/22/2013 07:58:26 MDT Print View

I think a big part of it is individuality. All through my years running track in college, I would put 1500+ miles on every pair of road running shoes I owned. My record was just over 3000 before I finally wore through the sole completely...

I have to say, the best pair of trail running shoes that I have encountered have been the Altra Lone Peaks. They are a zero drop shoe, but not exactly minimalist as they do have a solid amount of cushioning. Regular reviews place the life of the shoes at ~1,000 miles, mine are currently at nearly 900 and have a lot of life left in them.

I love my Salomon shoes that I have owned through the years, but the durability is always questionable. Well made and insanely comfortable, no doubt, but they always seem to fail much sooner than other brands.

Seriously, try the Altra Lone Peaks, you won't regret it.

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: Life of trail runners on 04/22/2013 09:16:39 MDT Print View

I am on my sixth pair of Salomon xa pro 3d ultras (only my current pair is the "2") and they seem to last between 500-700 miles on them. Granite and Sandstone tend to wear the soles faster but I guess that is obvious. All of my pairs have had holes wear in the flex portion of the upper but it never affected performance.

As a road runner I replace my shoes every 400 miles but that because of midsole breakdown as they still look in pretty good shape. The pair I use on the treadmill still look like I could put them back in the box after 400 miles but the midsole isn't what it used to be.

Barry P
(BarryP) - F

Locale: Eastern Idaho (moved from Midwest)
Re: Life of trail runners on 04/22/2013 09:41:05 MDT Print View

“…and they are losing tread …”

Even though I don’t use trail runners, I think the same applies to all footwear:
The softer the tread, the better the-wet-rock grip (and even dry-rock grip); which for me is an important safety feature. But the down side is--- the tread will wear down faster. Sadly I only get between 200-500 miles. Maybe people can endure farther and double those miles. But what happens for me is-- my knees and/or hips start hurting. Then I know my tread (and sometimes the shoe soul) has worn. It’s amazing how a 1/4” loss in the shoe affects all your bones/joints; and a new pair of footwear instantly fixes those pains.

I can’t tell but it looks like that “Contagrip rubber” used in the tread appears to be softer than generic vibram and thus will give you much better traction in cold and/or wet.

Good luck in footwear,
-The mountains were made for Tevas

Renais A
Salomons vs. other brands on 04/22/2013 11:24:47 MDT Print View

I found that Salomons are much less durable than Vasques, Merrels, and most other brands of shoes that I use. I easily get over 1000 miles of hiking in most of my shoes, but was lucky to get 300-400 in Salomons. That is really a shame, because the Salomons were very comfortable, and often available for sale at a very good price, but they just did not last. I found that the tread, cushioning, and top fabric all wore down pretty quickly on my Salomons. If you want durability, I'd suggest another brand.