While it’s always nice to have a rugged trail shoe that can handle the gnarliest conditions, sometimes it’s nice to have a shoe that can do the everyday things well. Like the Topo Athletic MT-3, a shoe designed for transitioning seamlessly between road and trail.
Will this be your go-to shoe for super technical east coast trails? Probably not (Topo has other shoes for that). But for lighter trails, fire roads, and just roads in general, the MT-3’s light but cushioned ride, paired with its quick-draining technology, is a no-brainer.
No point in beating around the proverbial bush: the Topo Athletic MT-3 is my favorite trail shoe of 2019. It’s one of my favorite road shoes of 2019, too. Wait, what?
This shoe is perfect for road-to-trail runs or — gasp — those dreaded road miles that inevitably appear in ultramarathons. I even wore these for a handful of road-only runs. The outsole has multidirectional lugs that do their job, but aren’t so aggressive that you notice them on the road.
They weigh in at 8 ounces for a women’s 7, which kind of surprised me TBH because they feel lighter than that. The midsole is the perfect combination of cushion and responsiveness (slightly on the stiff side, which I prefer).
The upper is made of ripstop mesh, and there are drainage holes in the midsole. So while the upper has a bit more structure than, say, an Altra Superior would have, they still drain well. And the structure is one of the best parts of this shoe: they feel secure on your feet. Like a slipper, but one that holds your foot in place. This is, I think, where Topo really nails it. While I love my Altras, they aren’t my first choice for technical terrain, because they’re just a bit too sloppy, upper-wise, and the toebox just a tad too wide. The Topo MT-3 has plenty of room in the toebox without giving too much room.
I received these in the orange/yellow colorway, and after a hundred pairs of snooze-fest black and gray trail shoes from other companies, I have to say just looking at these makes me happy.
While the upper drains well, it can get a little hot. I’d also suggest sizing up a half size in these. My normal 8.5 fits, but they’re a little snug if I wear them with Balegas or any sock of comparable thickness.
That’s it. That’s all I got.
If you’re looking for that solid hybrid trail shoe with just the right amount of cushion and drop, get this shoe! You won’t regret it. You can pick it up for a reasonable $110 at Running Warehouse using the shop links below.Shop Topo MT-3