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Montrail Bajada OutDry

The technical:  

  • neutral and cushioned trail running shoe (same as regular Bajada)
  • designed with traction for superior off road performance (same as regular Bajada)
  • provides waterproofing with breathability (water proof membrane is heat sealed to the upper resulting in no water penetration and no extra weight in wet conditions but still allows for dynamic flexibility- these shoes maintain the flexibility found in non-waterproof styles)
  • weight: 10.4oz (regular Bajada is 8.5oz )
  • ride: 10mm drop (same as regular Bajada)
  • features: GRYPTONITE – sticky carbon rubber with multi-directional lugs delivers aggressive traction across a variety of surface conditions and TRAIL SHIELD -lightweight, flexible material that is co-molded between outsole and midsole for underfoot protection
  • $159.99 at Running Free (regular price)

My take:

All the cool kids at ultra races seem to be wearing Montrails and they were highly recommended by a few close friends so I decided to try a pair and thought I may as well go with the OutDry’s because we are getting into fall/winter trail running which usually means wet and soggy, slippery conditions.  I do enjoy more of a hearty shoe for these seasons!  Also keep in mind that I am coming from a long stint in more a minimalist type shoe in the Brooks PureGrit (4mm drop and 9.9oz).

My first run was a relatively dry 16k in the trails.  Although very comfortable (read: form-fitting to my foot), the first thing I noticed about these shoes was the weight. Apparently  a few ounces makes a huge difference as I felt them to be quite clunky.  But I wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt because notoriously the first 5-8k of a trail run are quite challenging to me before I get warmed up or into a groove.  For the duration of this first run, the shoes were quite comfortable but I kept thinking about my feet and how heavy and big they felt (and I am a believer that one’s shoes should be part of one’s body for comfort).  We ended up doing the last kilometre out on the road and here I really noticed the weight of my shoe.  Most of the people who recommended the Bajada’s to me also said they were a very good choice of shoe for runs that have road or dirt roads as part of the trail run- that they were almost a hybrid of sorts, bridging the gap between road and trail very well.  That may be true for the regular Bajada’s but I found the Outdry’s quite cumbersome on the road.

I have 2 other tiny complaints about the shoe that have nothing to do with the performance of the shoe: 1) the colour of the women’s shoe is quite unappealing and even masculine!  The colour code is titanium and neon light.  I know this is a trail shoe and will soon be covered in dirt and debris so the colour should not really matter but a little bit of colour splash would be great! 2) the laces are way too short.  I can barely do one bow, let alone double knot it like I normally do with my trail shoes.  They actually have never come undone during a run but it is just frustrating trying to get them tied up well.

I have also heard that these shoes are notorious for the uppers ripping and tearing (not caused by cutting on something sharp) but I have not (yet?!) experienced this issue and I am a true believer that every shoe is different – I have had trail shoes in the past that 1 version of the shoe didn’t rip but the very same shoe next time around did rip.

Other than the weight, I was and still am happy with the performance shoe.  Very good traction and protection.  I have not been able to test out these shoes in truly soggy conditions or water crossings yet so I cannot speak to the waterproof nature of the shoe but I will say that my feet were definitely not dirty like they usually are after a run through the trails.  I will continue to wear them I think, especially in the fall/winter months when everything is heavier and you require more protection in the trails.

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