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Shoes

Montrail Bajada II Trail-Running Shoe (Spring 2015)

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11.4 oz | 10mm drop | $110

 

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The Dirt: The Bajada II stands out for its old-school aesthetic. As one tester said, it’s “a trail runner that looks like a trail runner—medium-profile, no funky neon piping or weird-colored tread.”

The shoe’s performance is similarly utilitarian: nothing flashy, but it gets the job done. Testers appreciated the locked-in fit that provided stability on technical terrain, the breathable-yet-protective mesh upper and the knobby, diamond-shaped lugs that gripped well on rock, loose dirt and steep descents but didn’t get in the way on roads. The Bajada II is also extremely durable; both the outsole and upper showed only minimal wear after extensive use.

Best For: Mixed terrain, from pavement to light mud, up to marathon distance.

Fit: Fairly narrow from heel to toe; runners with wider feet may find the fit uncomfortable.

>More spring 2015 trail-running shoes


Tester Raves

“These shoes feel like an old friend. Probably not the flashiest or most flamboyant person in your life, but absolutely reliable, predictable and there when you need them.”

—Keith Knipling, Alexandria, VA

“I found the Bajada II responsive and supportive—a shoe I was happy to take out on just about any terrain, any length.”

—Nicole Blouin, Santa Fe, NM

“A good everyday running shoe: not too light, not too heavy, not speedy, not slow, not too soft, not too rigid. The utility player of trail shoes.”

—Jason A. Miller, Austin, TX

 

Testers on Fit

“The width is slightly narrow. I tend to overpronate, and the narrow footbed allowed my ankles to occasionally roll inward more than I would have liked, particularly on uneven terrain.”

—Keith Knipling, Alexandria, VA

“The overlays were great for holding my foot in place on the more technical part of the trail, but also was not so much that they were not enjoyable on more relaxed runs.”

—Jason A. Miller, Austin, TX

 

Testers on Tread

“The tiny microcleats of pliable rubber grip packed dirt like nothing else. The soft rubber is fairly good on rocks too, but the cleats are just so-so on mud or snow.”

—Keith Knipling, Alexandria, VA

“This shoe was very good on wet surfaces. I even waded into the river and then rock hopped to see how it would do on wet stone.”

—Holly Weik, Steamboat Springs, CO

“The outsole gripped on steep descents. I was able to scream down the loose scree section where our powerlines intersect the local foothill trails.”

—Nicole Blouin, Santa Fe, NM

 

Testers on Downsides

“The breathability allowed for dust and debris [to enter], which caused some minor irritation.”

—Nicole Blouin, Santa Fe, NM

“The midsole felt extremely rigid, with no cush feel or flexibility.”

—Danny Naylor, Seattle, WA

>More spring 2015 trail-running shoes


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