Chapter 44: How to Find 8-ounce Trail Running Shoes – New Balance MT101

In chapter 10 we talked about footwear being a great thing to lighten up since you lift your feet with every step. There are many companies that make light trail running shoes. New Balance makes some of the lightest, and has a lot of different models.

One that has received very favorable reviews from Backpacker magazine and Trail Runner magazine is the New Balance MT101. It’s a minimalist trail runner that weighs just 7.8 ounces. Even light trail running shoes usually weigh around 12 ounces, so this one really grabs your attention.

Reviews by magazines and runners talk very positively about the good blend of breathability, support, and durability. I found the same thing. They breath well and dry quickly after getting wet so they are less likely to cause blisters. They give more support than you would think, and are very durable.

The upper is synthetic/mesh. The toe area is well-protected. The tongue is minimal but has some cushion. There’s EVA foam to cushion your Achilles and ankle area.

I’ve really enjoyed the laces in my last couple of pairs of New Balance. They are aunique design called Surelaces and they stay tied well.

The midsole is very flexible and is lighter and thinner than other trail runners, but the support is good. Since the sole is thin and low, you’re less likely to roll your ankle. There’s nothing to roll off of.

For those with high arches, there’s not much arch support, so would might want to add your own.

The soles have lugs to give traction on rocks and mud. There are deeply cut heel brakes to slow you down on steep downhills.

Since there is less material in this shoe than most, the price of $75 isn’t bad for a really specialized shoe. They are available in green or black.

New Balance also makes the MT 10 Minimus Trail, a 7.1 ounce shoe with a Vibram outsole and minimalist upper for $100.

Check the internet for any trail running shoe you want to learn more about. Click on videos and you’ll probably find some customer reviews.