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Merrell All Out Charge Trail Shoe Review

All Out ChargeThe Good

Betsy: The All Out Charge is an aesthetically delicious shoe that just happens to feel even more amazing than it looks. When I first slipped them on, my immediate reaction was, “Oh no, these are WAY too tight!” But once my feet moved past the strangeness of the semi-attached tongue and settled in for their first ride, they were gripped and hugged in all the right places. I managed one double-digit run in the All Out Charge before winter weather struck, and I basically forgot I was even wearing shoes, they felt THAT good. I like a snug heel and a wide toe box, and these provide just that. There is ample room for my ever-expanding bunion, yet I don’t see clown shoes when I glance down mid-stride. On that first run, I also noted how much my feet were both connected to the ground and protected while barreling down a rocky slope. The next time I tested the All Out Charge, there were several inches of snow blanketing the trails, but I easily finished a twenty miler with only one minor slip. I had no issues post-run, no blisters, hot spots, or sore feet.

Johnny: I’m a big, BIG fan of the Merrell All Out Charge. It’s an attractive pair of shoes that feel like they’re custom made for my feet. The HyperWrap 360° fit system hugs my foot in all of the right places and prevents the tongue of the shoe from sliding around. The lugs and tread pattern couldn’t be more conducive to spending hours on snowy, muddy trails. I feel stable, agile and connected flying down rooty, rocky hills. The shoes basically disappear from your feet. Unfortunately, I have no basis of comparison from previous Merrell models, but the All Out Charge are a hit. Did I mention how good looking they are?! We have the men’s in ‘Racer Blue’ and women’s ‘Raspberry.’

photo 2 (4)The Bad

Betsy: I am struggling to find something negative to say about this shoe. I suppose they can be a bit difficult to actually put on, especially after a night of excessive sodium consumption, but really, once my feet are in, the shoes just become an extension of my feet. I wouldn’t recommend them to die hard Hoka fans, or anyone who prefers to be elevated several inches off the ground by cushioning. The Merrell All Out Charge is quite firm in comparison.

Johnny: I’m hard-pressed to find anything negative to say, too. I have grown to REALLY like the HyperWrap upper, but I had some initial issues with the shoes causing hotspots in the midfoot. This was a simple adjustment in how the shoes were laced. I guess I don’t like that they retail for $120 either, but I’d definitely have no problem paying it after having gone through the review process.

photo 3 (2)The Conclusion

Betsy: Since I have no previous experience with Merrell, I can’t compare the Merrell All Out Charge to any other models, but as a seasoned trail runner with a few ultras under my, er, feet, I know this will be the shoe I pluck off the shelf for my upcoming 8 hour trail race. The All Out Charge is a durable and cozy trail shoe for folks who like connection AND protection. I will certainly be delving further into the world of Merrell once this pair reaches its mileage limit.

Johnny: Ditto. I definitely won’t be overlooking Merrell moving forward. These are easily my go-to for upcoming trail races. I’m pretty impressed.

Check out the stats from Merrell and purchase a pair from REI.

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Have something to say? Leave a Comment

  1. Nemecek says:

    What do the tread look like? Merrell shoes usually have less of a trail sole on their shoes than most other trail shoe companies, so I’m a little skeptical of their purchase in mud and snow without seeing the lugs.

    I see Betsy mention the toe box, did you (Johnny) notice the men’s shoe having a particularly wide toe box?

    Finally, what is the heel/toe drop on these shoes?


    1. Hi Jason, We added a link to the stats on the shoe from Merrell.Look down by the conclusion section. There is also a picture of the out sole in the stats doc.

  2. Alan Ashley says:

    I’ve also seen them has a narrow-ish shoe, particularly in the mid half back. Is this true? Also what would the fit compare too.

    1. I have always felt the opposite, but I have a narrow foot.

  3. Tom says:

    I love Merrell’s. I love them so much I should win this contest. Seriously, out of the box fit and comfort in other pairs I’ve had (MixMaster 2’s) and great durability.

  4. LouisDS says:

    Over the course of the next year, I’m moving towards my first ultra and I will definitely consider this show.

  5. DIStherapy says:

    I NEED a new pair of running shoes with considerable traction; I’m set to start running the trails behind my house in Vermont and need all the help I can get!

  6. Amy S says:

    I’ve recently started trail running and can’t wait for more. I’m thinking my first true trail race will be this summer – the distance is just a question of how comfortable I am by then. I would love to win a pair of All Our Charge to train with for my first trail race adventure!

  7. John says:

    Big fan of this blog. i have a collection of the Puma Night Cat jackets in various colors based on you review.

    Looking forward to trying these out.

  8. Chad says:

    Lots of trail runs coming up in the snowy winter. These shoes sound perfect to tackle those conditions.

  9. Trey says:

    Pretty excited about this shoe. This looks like a good move by Merrell. Great review.

  10. Nick Zielinski says:

    I should win this contest because I’m a running shoe geek without a pair of trail shoes! Merrell’s shoes have always fascinated me and this pair looks awesome!

  11. I have had great experience with Merrell’s, and these sound fantastic. Thanks for the review!

  12. Ben says:

    Oh these sound PERFECT! I hope they don’t have such pronounced arch support like the all out fuse did…I loved everything about those except during long miles it felt like I was standing on a triangle. I love my Merrelll hiker’s would love to see how these run!

  13. Erik says:

    More info on the actual amount of cushioning, drop, and type of tread would be very useful. Knowing the fit and upper are good is helpful but some comparisons would be useful.

  14. Erik, Check out the stats that are linked after the conclusion.

  15. Sydney A says:

    I absolutely love Merrel shoes! They are the perfect combination of functional and comfortable!

  16. Thanks for the review, Betsy and Johnny! I was very interested to hear your impression since the first time I saw BIR post a photo of this shoe on instagram. I am a huge fan of the fit of the Merrell “bare” series, and own a pair of Mix Master 2 from Merrell; but they never had enough cushion for me to consider them for ultramarathon distance on trail. The All Out Charge, however, has a decent amount of cushion and based on your review looks like a great possibility for my upcoming 50 mile trail race later this year (my first 50 miler!).

  17. Hey Thomas, how do I update the thumbnail image for my blog comment user icon? I tried to find it under my account settings at the BIR ambassador page, and can’t find it. Thanks!

  18. Luke says:

    Merrells are what brought me back to running. Can’t wait to try these out.

  19. Luke says:

    Merrells were the shoes that brought me back to running. I can’t wait to try these out.

  20. Amy Lauren says:

    I’d love to win. Trail shoes would be nice to have for a few upcoming races in March!

  21. Holly S. (@TCSpartan) says:

    My Merrell MixMasters have seen better trail running days. I would love to win these for the spring trail running season that is quickly approaching!

  22. Holly E says:

    I love these shoes and I really need a new pair of running shoes.

  23. Judith says:

    I really need a new pair of shoes, as I’m training for my first half marathon. These would be perfect!

  24. Kristen M says:

    I have many undiscovered (to me) trails in my area. I’ll need a new challenge once marathon training is complete.

  25. Joellen E says:

    Love my Merrell’s! Working up to an Ultra in 2016 – would love more shoes!

  26. Miranda O says:

    I want get some more trail running in (actually just start trail running!). Loved the picture of the shoe in the snow. I’m currently using Nike Structure but want to give Merrill a go!

  27. Brenda Penton says:

    I’d love to win a pair of Merrells because I’ve never owned a pair before and would love to have the chance to try them. Thank you!

  28. masood anjum says:

    love these shoes and I really need

  29. Tracey says:

    I am in need of a new pair of runners and have found it challenging to find snug heel and a wide toe box.

  30. aaron reck says:

    I would love to win the Merrel’s. The comfort and style are the main draws and it’s just a great shoe.

  31. Gerard says:

    I have run in Merrells in the past, including the original Trail Glove and Road Glove.

  32. Geoff says:

    Love the red and black color combos

  33. Gord says:

    I should win so I can have the best shoe’s on my feet.

  34. Tessa says:

    I’m wanting to start trail running and these would be great to start me off!

  35. Jordan P says:

    Winning free stuff is always pretty cool

  36. Nancy Schools says:

    I would love these because they look very comfortable and durable.

  37. Sandra M says:

    Why should I win a pair of Merrells? For the obvious reason–one can never have too many pairs of Merrells! I Need some other colors to wear to work (Yes, I wear them with my dresses, been tweeting them the past couple of weeks). 🙂
    I have never done trail runs, but really want to start. My Merrells that I bought 17 years ago for a trip to Alaska NEVER gave me blisters and still are AWESOME–but they are hiking boots. My Merrell Desert hikers, while I have gone running in them, aren’t perfect for trail running. PLEASE! PICK ME, PICK ME!!!!

  38. Lori says:

    I’d like to win this shoe so I can escape the concrete jungle

  39. Mike Dasalla says:

    Great review!

  40. jeremy says:

    Trail shoes to open a world of running that city streets can never reveal

  41. Jim in Maine says:

    Always up for trying a new pair of shoes … Never have worn a pair of Merrells.

  42. Mike Nemecek says:

    I’d love a new pair or Merrell’s to hit the trails in Umstead State Park, Raleigh, NC!

  43. James Hong says:

    I think these would be great to replace my dying New Balance MT110s!

  44. Erica says:

    I love the style of Merrells, but the Pace Glove killed my knees, I’d love to try out something less minimalist!

  45. Matthew Imberman says:

    Hoping to try these out as I’m still looking for a suitable replacement for Merrell’s Mix Master 2’s which I loved.

  46. pug says:

    Ran 8 miles of snow/ice covered trails in the AOC. These shoes are awesome!

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