Top 5 Best Merrell Running Shoes 2017

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merrell shoes
#1inov-8-roclite-280Merrell Trail Glove 3
#2inov-8-mudclaw-300Merrell Grassbow Air
#3inov-8-terraclaw-250Merrell Vapor Glove 2
#4inov-8-race-ultra-290Merrell All Out Peak
#5inov-8-x-talon-212Merrell Bare Access

Merrell Trail Glove 3

The Merrell Trail Glove 3 is one of the best running shoes for adventure running. They are minimalist shoes designed to satisfy runners who desire comfortable shoes with the natural feel of barefoot running. With its low heel to toe drop and Vibram outsole, they help you to enjoy greater ground sensitivity and flexibility.



The Merrell Trail Glove 3 upper is made with durable air mesh that keeps your foot well-ventilated when you run for long hours. The breathable air mesh works in combination with the anti-microbial foot bed to keep your foot dry and free of odors. Equipped with a special Omni-Fit lacing system, and a TPU Sling at the rear foot, Trail Glove offers a true glove-like fit. This 3rd edition has a wider toe box to accomodate runners with wide feet. The new design of the upper mesh makes this shoes more attractive and visually appealing. The shoes now have elegant reflective stripes that increase visibility in low light so you can seen by others from a far distance.


The Trail Glove 3 offer a 4 mm CMEVA cushioning in the midsole that makes it stand out among other minimalist shoes. CMEVA stands for compression molded ethyl vinyl acetate and it is a modified version of the popular EVA midsole used in many running shoes. This cushioning material reduces shock when you land, protects your foot from impact, and offers superior comfort. Since CMEVA is a lightweight material, it gives excellent shock absorption without making these Merrell running shoes unduly heavy. Thus, it can be used to run on rocks and other hard surfaces without allowing you to have blisters.


The Glove 3 have a durable Vibram TC1 outsole – a popular outsole brand that guarantees excellent grip, traction and protection on minimalist style shoes. This sole also offers exceptional flexibility and superior performance, especially when you run on the road or on hard surfaces. For additional protection, the sole has a unique trail protect plate that shields your foot from the effects of running on sharp stones or very uneven surfaces. To provide good traction on both wet and slippery surfaces, the sole has specially designed lugs that give you good grip and wear resistance. Due to the shallow, non-aggressive nature of the lugs, you can also use these shoes for many other types of road running, trail running, and hiking. In fact, some people prefer to use the Trail Glove 3 as boating shoes because they don’t retain water, and they do not slip on wet rocks.

The Verdict


  • Wide Toe Box: Upgraded with a larger toe box so that forefoot runners can feel more comfortable while running.
  • Reliable Outsole: The Vibram outsole offers durability and excellent performance on a wide variety of terrains and trail surfaces.
  • Cool and Dry Upper Mesh: The air mesh and supporting underlays keep your foot free of sweat and odor.
  • Multiple Color Scheme: Merrell provides these shoes in many vibrant color combinations that are beautiful and elegant.
  • Cushioning Support: Offers cushioning support that gives extra comfort and makes them a great choice for half-marathon runners.
  • Perfect Fit and Lightweight: True to its name, they fit like a glove and helps you to focus more on your running.


  • They will not be suitable for runners who need a lot of cushioning and support while running.
  • After running for many hours, you may feel some slight discomfort if you are not a runner with neutral pronation. So the midsole design could be optimized to provide more shock absorption and comfort.

Merrell Grassbow Air

The Merrell Grassbow Air running shoes are low hiking shoes designed to help you spend hours hiking while your foot remains cool. Instead of wearing heavy boots each time you need to hike a trail, these light and versatile shoes will help you to reduce the weight of your hiking gear and keep things minimalist.


Merrell Grassbow Air

Lightweight Breathable Upper Design

In the Grassbow Air upper unit, Merrell uses the well-known Gore-tex air mesh material. This material provides superior ventilation for your foot and ensures that there is sufficient airflow to wick out sweat and keep your foot cool. Apart from cooling your foot, the light weight of this material makes it easy for you to get hiking shoes that will weigh less than 360g. Obviously, this makes them far more comfortable than traditional hiking boots, which feel heavier as you spend more hours on a trail.

When you go on a long hiking trip, you don’t have to bother about using socks, which usually makes the shoes feel heavier. The mesh lining and EVA foot beds are treated with Merrell’s M-Select Fresh odor control technology. M-Select has potent anti-bacterial properties that stop the activity of bacteria and prevent from developing any unpleasant odor.

The Grassbow Air also has anti-debris technology. The shoes were built to prevent dirt from coming into it when you have to walk on soft or quick sand. Its bellowed tongues will prevent small stones, dirt and debris from getting in. Similarly, the heel air cushion and heel counter, made from thermoplastic polyurethane, will keep your heel firm and stable.

Well Cushioned Midsole

In the mid-sole section, the removable foot beds provide comfort for your underfoot. The foot frame is made with Merrell’s In-Board compression molded EVA material. This material is lighter than conventional EVA foam but it offers amazing cushioning, strength and durability. It has the capacity to withstand the tough conditions you will encounter when hiking on unpredictable off-road and rugged terrain.

To keep your toes and forefoot from getting injured, the Grassbow Air is reinforced in the toe box section. With the help of the TrailProtect technology, your toes will not be bruised even when you hit them on rocks, stones or roots. TrailProtect is made of durable rubber that has the capacity to withstand repeated impact with very rough and hard surfaces, like the sharp rocks you may encounter while hiking. This flexible pad in the forefoot absorbs shock and protects you when you are descending down a hill on a rocky surface, so you can move fast with confidence.

Durable Merrell Grip Outsole

The Merrell Grassbow Air outsole features the famous M-Select Grip technology. Designed to deliver exceptional slip resistance, this grippy outsole material offers stability and durability on both dry and wet ground on various types of terrain. With 3.5 mm lugs, the winter treated outsole on Grassbow Air, offers good traction in both cold and hot weather conditions. This makes it ideal for tru-hiking on long trails that require you to remain on the trail for three to twelve months.

The Verdict


  • Lightweight: The air mesh and synthetic leather in the upper unit, the EVA cushioning, and footframe are very light materials that help to reduce the total weight.
  • The air mesh material offers great ventilation that takes out heat from your body and permits air to come in to dry up sweat quickly.
  • Comfortable: The toe box, heel cushion, and abundant air flow make these hiking shoes very comfortable.
  • Healthy and Odorless Interior: M-Select Fresh Odor technology keeps the EVA footbed and the mesh lining free of bacteria that can cause them to smell.
  • Suitable for Winter: Special winter treatment has been applied to the outsole to make it perfect for both summer and winter.
  • Works on all Trails: You can use the shoes to hike on virtually all types of trail surfaces including sand, mud, rocks, snow, and shallow water.
  • Protects the Toes: The Trail Protect technology protects the toes from injury when you hit against a hard or sharp surface.
  • Keeps the Heel Stable: Thermoplastic polyurethane cushioning keeps the heel stable.
  • Offers Durable Cushioning: Compression molded EVA cushioning offers lightweight and tough cushioning for your foot.
  • Has a Tough Outsole: The M-Select Grip technology used in the outsole offers non-skid grip on almost all surfaces.


  • Like many Merrell shoes, they have a relatively narrow mid-section.
  • The laces are rather smooth and they tend to loosen up once in a while.

Merrell Vapor Glove 2

Merrell Vapor Glove 2 are extremely light, breathable shoes designed for runners who love a minimalist barefoot experience. It offers a snug and secure fit but its flexibility mimics the natural foot movement. With its well-protected toe section, it is suitable for running on trails.Merrell Vapor Glove 2


Comfortable and Breathable Upper

The Vapor Glove 2 upper unit consists of air mesh – a highly breathable lightweight material, which allows you to run without your foot getting hot or sweaty. The Rear Foot Sling made from thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) provides support for the heel. It helps to secure your heel in place without adding any unnecessary weight. At the toe box, the toe bumper is reinforced with rubber. So you can enjoy adequate protection when your toe comes in contact with rocks, roots or debris during trail running.

On top of the mid-sole foam, a fixed foot bed made of microfiber provides anti-microbial properties and helps to prevent odors. The Vapor Glove 2 also adds additional cushioning for the foot. To prevent blowouts from occurring along the sides, particularly near the little and big toes, Merrell has reinforced inside and out. You can see a polyurethane material painted unto the mesh.

Responsive and Flexible Midsole Cushioning

Although minimalist shoes will normally not have much cushioning in the midsole area, they still offer durable cushioning for your underfoot. A lightweight compression molded EVA foam material delivers flexible support for the foot. In the Vapor Glove 2 midsole, and the zero drop gives you a very good ground feel.

High Qualilty Outsole With Good Grip and Traction

Merrell uses the Vibram outsole for these running shoes. Made principally of durable rubber, it delivers impressive traction on both wet and dry surfaces. When you use Vapor Glove 2 to run on asphalt roads, you will notice the firm grip that it provides. Apart from grip and traction, the Vibram sole is also very flexible. The light groove pattern makes it possible to bend the whole shoes.

The Vibram outsole is divided into 4 distinct sections: the heel, the mid-foot, the small toes and the big toe. Each section is separated by deep flex grooves. You can rely on this outsole to provide natural fluid movements and good traction and its durability guarantees a long lasting ride on the road and light trails.

Appearance and Fit

With at least 8 color schemes, the Vapor Glove 2 will satisfy your tastes in terms of appearance and attraction. The color combinations are quite beautiful. You will easily find one that will suit you whether you want one that is eye-catching or one that has a fairly conservative design.

The Vapor Glove 2 has a slightly larger size and than the standard length. You may select a size that is half less than your normal size. The toe box has a medium-to-narrow width while the mid-foot and heel sections have a medium width. Overall they tends to fit runners with narrow feet better, although it can accommodate runners with medium-sized feet.

The Verdict


  • Toe Protection: You can use the shoes to run on trails with peace of mind since the toe bumper is reinforced with rubber.
  • Good Ground Feel: Vapor Glove 2 provides the type of ground feel treasured by runners who want to feel as if they are running barefooted.
  • Multi-section Vibram Sole: The Vibram is made of very durable rubber that can withstand wear and provide good grip and traction.
  • Lightweight: The men’s size 8 weighs just 5.5 oz.
  • Durability: The upper has been reinforced with polyurethane material to prevent tearing at the big and small toe sections.
  • Breathability: Vapor Glove 2 has exceptional ventilation and it permits excellent airflow.
  • Good Temperature Control: Due to the speed at which the shoes wicks out sweat, they keep your foot at a fairly stable temperature in both summer and winter.
  • Attractive Design: You can choose from any of the eight elegant designs provided by Merrell.


  • The toe box has a low volume, so the toes of wide footed runners may not splay easily inside it.
  • The material used to construct the upper section is quite delicate and it needs to be handled with care.

Merrell All Out Peak

Merrell All Out Peak are well-built neutral trail running shoes. It comes with a sole that delivers amazing traction on virtually all trail surfaces and it offers superior cushioning and comfort. These shoes are ideal for runners who need durable running shoes for everyday running.Merrell All Out Peak


Durable, Comfortable and Breathable Upper

The All Out Peak upper unit have a combination of breathable air mesh and durable synthetic material. At the toe bumper, you will find thick outsole rubber, which is designed to protect your foot and prevent bruises. This means that whether you are taking a stride up a trail or running downhill, your toes will not get hurt. Also at the toe box, a piece of synthetic waterproof rubber keeps water out and enhances the durability.

By the sides of the All Out Peak, a set of zig zag strips, made of reflective material, provide additional visibility in low light conditions. The zig zag design is called a Hyperwrap 360 degrees fit system, which keeps the mid-section of the foot in place for improved stability. In addition, a removable footbed, with anti-microbial properties, keeps your foot dry and prevents the build up of foul odors.

Superior Midsole Cushioning for Comfort and Stability

In the midsole, Merrell uses their Uni-Fly technology, which helps to disperse the impact each time you land on a rough surface. It also provides adequate underfoot protection for both short and long mileage runs. At the heel, the air cushion offers lightweight and stable cushioning. The All Out Peak are efficient shock absorption that makes them more responsive. With the molded arch shank, you can enjoy improved flexibility and stability on a very rough terrain.

Impressive Outsole for Grip on Wet and Dry Ground

Merrell built the outsole with the Vibram Megagrip technology. That is why it provides superb traction on virtually any type of surface. So you can use these shoes to run on snow and wet surfaces in winter or on hard, stony and dry ground in summer. Apart from grip and traction, the Vibram outsole also provides impressive durability.

With the 6mm long lugs on the sole of the All Out Peak, it can dig conveniently into almost any type of trail for superior traction. Although you will enjoy the deep lugs on soft mud or dirt, they also work well on rocky surfaces. The durability gives you an assurance that will offer you service for hundreds of miles before it starts to show serious signs of wear.

Attractive Style and Normal Fit

The Merrell All Out Peak comes with at least eight color variations for the men and women versions. The designs spotting a black upper mesh look more masculine while those with the brighter colors like blue and orange have more feminine appeal. All together, they fit true-to-size so you can use your standard running shoes size when you want to buy it.

The Verdict


  • Toe Protection: The rubber at the toe bumper protects your toes from injury when you are running on dangerous trails.
  • Breathability: It is possible to run without wearing socks because the breathable mesh will provide good ventilation and cause sweat to dry quickly.
  • Reflective: The synthetic overlays at the mid-foot section offer better visibility when running in low light.
  • Stability: Merrell’s HyperWrap technology keeps the foot stable and allows you to run faster without the fear of getting injured.
  • Comfort: All Out Peak has impressive cushioning that makes them very comfortable.
  • Durability: The Vibram rubber sole with long and rugged lugs can be used on virtually all types of trails.
  • Sole Protection: Merell’s Trail Protect technology protects the sole of your foot from injury when you run on rocky and uneven surfaces.
  • Unique Lacing System: The fabric of the lacing system prevents mud and debris from getting in and it helps you to achieve a snug fit.


  • Some runners with wide feet found it to be too narrow.
  • Some runners felt that the lugs should last a bit longer or wear out at a slower rate.
  • They may be a bit expensive for some runners, but the quality justifies the price.

Merrell Bare Access

The Merrell Bare Access are famous minimalist running shoes that has very responsive insoles. It offers a reasonable amount of protection and comfort for long trail runners. Runners seeking for shoes that can enhance speed and performance will also appreciate the snug fit in the midsection, roomy toe box, and barefoot feeling underneath.Merrell Bare Access


Breathable, Roomy and Comfortable Upper Design

Merrell combined synthetic leather and air mesh in the upper unit. The fourth version of the Bare Access offers an upper unit that is stronger, more breathable, durable and supportive. So you can use these shoes to run for several hours without experiencing any kind of chaffing on your foot. At the mid-foot, the overlays made of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), make the fabric wrap round your foot like a glove without increasing the total weight. The light padding provided around the heel collar also helps to improve comfort and fit.

The ventilation holes in the upper air mesh are so effective that sweat dries up very quickly. Obviously, this is complemented by the roomy toe box. To prevent bad odors from emanating, the inner sleeve has an M-Select Fresh coating that provides anti-microbial properties. That is why running with the Bare Access offers you a clean and healthy space for your foot.

Durable Midsole With Good Surface Feel

Merrell has added the MBound technology to the midsole of the Bare Access to offer excellent ground feeling to the runner’s foot. This technology gives some cushioning to the foot while making you feel as if you are running with your barefoot on the ground. While running with the Bare Access you will discover that if offers amazing flexibility and it allows you to move freely on on trails.

In addition, the compression molded EVA foam is a durable midsole material, which lasts for 100’s of miles. It does not break down as fast as the ordinary ethylene vinyl acetate. The cushioning system offered by this midsole material supports the runner’s weight well. For this minimal amount of compressed EVA, the Bare Access offers a fairly good amount of rebound and flexibility. It also helps to smoothen out the natural movement of your foot.

Stable Outsole for Good Traction

In the outsole, Merrell combines the proprietary Bare Access Outsole, which has Vibram as its main technology. In addition to the durable rubber pods made from the Vibram material, it also has flex grooves in the forefoot. The combination of Vibram pods and the grooves provide wear resistance and a more responsive toe-off. The outsole provides stability and firmness on most trail surfaces even in wet conditions. This is partly due to the low platform of the Bare Access. Overall the outsole is quite flexible and responsive.

Aesthetics and Fit

Like most other trail running shoes produced by Merrell, the Merrell Bare Access comes with 8 major color schemes. Four have darker colors and may be more appealing to male users while the other four bright colors may be more attractive to females. They have a relatively narrow fit, so you may need to buy a 1/2 size larger than your normal size. This will make it possible for you to enjoy a wider toe box and use the lacing system to adjust the tension in the mid-foot section.

The Verdict


  • Breathable: The air mesh and inner lining is breathable and it permits rapid drying of sweat due to increased air flow.
  • Non-irritating Lining: It is now possible to wear the Bare Access for very long training runs since it will not cause chaffing or skin irritation.
  • Anti-microbial Treatment: M-Select Fresh treatment for the inner lining prevents any bacteria activity that may cause foul odor.
  • Fast Ground-to-Foot Feedback: The MBound technology used in the mid-sole is more responsive and it helps you to boost performance.
  • Impressive Traction: The Bare Access Outsole which utilizes Vibram pods offers very good traction on different types of surfaces.
  • Lightweight: Bare Access are light and fast shoes so it may be used for competitions.
  • Secure Fit: The mid-foot section and heel collar support provides a glove like fit for the foot.
  • Affordable Price: Most runners will be able to afford these shoes due its relatively low price.


  • Some parts of the upper could wear out faster than expected.
  • They may require more anti-debris components, or a different lacing system, to prevent the entry of small stones and dirt that enter and disrupt the running session.

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