Running Shoes: Montrail Hardrock
At first I used them on late night runs on both road and off trail runs. The off trail runs were mostly done by head torch and thus the grip and traction properties of the shoes were put to the serious test when avoiding puddles, ice, wet rock and the occasional drop off. I was very happy with them at the start and 12 months later I’m still using them to go on training runs and walks to the crag.
The true test of the original pair came during the summer when I wore them for 10 days in a row walking, running and scrambling in the South of France at the fantastic Ceuse. As many climbers know Ceuse has a long walk-in…and it’s all uphill. Going up the shoes provided good traction and comfort on dry, rocky paths but they showed their true colours after the too often thunderstorms that occurred in the afternoons.
Much time was spent running down thin trails in downpours and usually in fading light. The shoes were truly superb in dealing with wet rock, and were fantastic when it came to getting traction on soggy dirt trails. They were very reponsive when making quick decisions when running downhill and I passed many, many parties who had to take their time as they slipped their way down.
The only downpoint of the shoes was in serious muddy conditions, when the trails turned into thick mud / mini-rivers. At that point, the mud just clung to the shoes and all traction was lost.
Wear and tear has been good and the shoes still have a lot of life in them. I expect to be running in them for another winter season. As for protecting my aging knees - I added support by changing the normal insoles to Montrail Enduro insoles (see review here) and in combination with the shoes my knees are definately happier.
Overall a great shoe – so good that I got another pair which I use for gym work. (The others are wayyyy past their inside gym days. Covered in muck and other dirt.)
Reviewed by Jenny Johnson on behalf of planetFear