Topo Athletic MTN Racer

Best footwear for big miles

The Wasatch Crest Trail is 26 miles of winding, ridgetop singletrack. Tackling it is a committing day. We wouldn’t normally subject ourselves to it in shoes we hadn’t used before, but the MTN Racer’s dialed feature set gave us confidence. The route was long, dusty, and tough, but we ended with happy feet (and, yes, tired legs). The MTN Racer has a wide toe box, a 5-millimeter drop, and a firm-but-thick EVA midsole that’s supportive underfoot without the loss of ground feel, so steps are precise. A Vibram Megagrip outsole with diamond- and square-shaped lugs held onto all the terrain we took it into—from jagged lava rock to soft sand in Oregon’s Three Sisters Wilderness. These shoes also breathe, dry out, and drain remarkably well because of smartly placed ports along the midfoot (the ports don’t let in much dirt and dust, though).

$140; 1 lb. 4 oz.; m’s 6-15, w’s 6-11