Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Montrail Mountain Masochist Review

I'm always on the quest to find the perfect shoe. Preferebly one that I can both train and race in, because I don't see the sense of having different shoes for everyday of the week. I want one shoe to do what it needs to do. Obviously I wear road shoes on the road and trail shoes on the trail, but I believe I found the trail perfect trail shoe.
The Montrail Mountain Masochist.

Recently I had been running in the New Balance MT101, which is a great shoe as far as responsiveness and ground feel go, but after my last race I decided I needed to find something with a little more cushioning for pounding downhills.
The mountain masochist is one of Montrail's top rated trail shoes. In fact in won the "Gear of the year" award from outside magazine in 2009. While that may be a while back, the shoe still stands strong.
 With a weight of only 10.8oz, the Masochist only has a 10mm heel to toe drop ( 20mm heel, 10mm forefoot), which is the same drop as the "minimalist" New Balance MT101 with a just a slightly more padding (the MT101 sports a 18mm heel, 8mm forefoot). The "compression molded EVA midsole" felt extremely comfortable yet responsive right out of the box.
The Mountain Masochist has a "full length trail shield" to protect your feet from roots and rocks as well Montrails Gryptonite outsole to provide great traction even on wet surfaces. The lug pattern is something I was concerned with right off the bat because it doesn't look like it would grip well on slick climbs:
But let me tell you, it grips great, both up and down hill.
As soon as these shoes got delivered I took them out for a run by my apartment at Ellis Cove which is a 2 mile loop type of trail with consistent steep hills, mud, roots, and even slick wood stairs in one section.
The cushioning is amazing! Maybe because I've been running in the not so cushy MT101's lately, but it almost felt like I was running on pillows. This cushy-ness however, did not effect the ground feel of the Masochist. As you would imagine there was a little less ground feel, but not enough to make a big difference (a whole 2mm!). No ankle pain or rolling.
The "webbing and strap enclosure system" lets the shoe wrap firmly around your midfoot as well, while leaving ample room in the toebox. The "gusseted tongue and hydropholic mesh upper" really did do a nice job of keeping debris out. The padding on the interior of the shoe is amazing. I imagine it would stay that way on the long run, so it make's sense why it's a favorite of Geoff Roes.

 One complaint I have is that they did not keep my feet cool, so I'll be interested to see how they hold up in the summer, but if that's the only complaint, than that's a solid shoe.
All in all the mountain masochist is stable, comfortable, and responsive. It makes a great daily trail trainer.

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