What's the difference between a basic trail runner? The construction, materials and design. These three elements will make a big difference in the feel, fit and durability of this quintessential piece of equipment for the avid outdoor runner.
The key features of trail running shoes, which you will clearly note once you begin shopping around, are the following:
* A thick, stiff, heavy-duty sole that can take a pounding.
* Aggressively styled treads that are made to grip rough terrain. Look for directional or reverse treads for downhill running.
* Breathable, waterproof fabric and a combination of strong mesh and leather.
* An EVA or PU midsole built either for stability, motion control or cushioning. Polyurethane is usually stiffer and heavier than EVA, and thus lasts longer.
* A variable lacing system on some models to provide a customized fit.