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The North Face Women's Ultra Guide Trail Running Shoe isn't one to shy away from a rock-strewn, winding trail. Underfoot stability and comfort is assured by the advanced Cradle Guide midsole, which features both softer EVA on top for cushioning as well as firmer EVA underneath that's precisely engineered to both protect and stabilize your foot. Up top, the abrasion-resistant mesh and TPU upper offers breathable protection, while the Snake Plate underneath your forefoot takes the bite out of debris in the trail.

  • Tight-weave mesh in upper is tough and durable, yet breathable
  • Welded TPU supports offer lightweight, comfortable support
  • Tongue scree collar keeps out trail debris
  • Perforated Northotic footbed offers support and underfoot comfort
  • Cradle Guide technology in midsole uses a mix of EVA densities to cushion maximal forces at foot impact, dynamically support the arch through pronation, and guide the foot through toe-off
  • 8mm drop accommodates a variety of running styles
  • Snake Plate in forefoot offers protection from bruising from rough trails without sacrificing flexibility or adding weight
  • TPU toe cap adds insurance against painful stubs
  • Tenacious Grip sole features lightweight blown rubber in the center of the forefoot and durable carbon rubber in the perimeter and heel to reduce weight and maximize traction
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Light, moccasin-like shoe protects feet

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times
  • Fit: True to size

I was fearful that these "minimal" feeling and looking shoes would not offer adequate protection for rough trails. I just completed an 11 mile run mostly on single track- gravel, rubble, rocks and roots everywhere, rolling, steep and flat- a little of everything. I'm pleased with how my feet and legs felt at the end. The shoes flexed and twisted with the terrain and felt secure. I certainly could feel the rocks but not uncomfortably so. Fit: I ordered 1/2 size up and they are 1/2 size long but the narrow fit secured snuggly on my AA width feet. The extra length will be appreciated at the event I'm heading to in a few weeks- lots of down hill. I would like a tiny bit firmer feel in the heel counter, though my foot stayed in position w/in the shoe very well.

The Ultra Guide out of the box test

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: True to size

Took these babies out of the box and headed out for a 25 mile trail run this morning.

The fit is great, snug and comfortable. The shoe does not have a lot of cushion, but then again that?s the way they are made. The trail was soft dirt with lots of rooty sections with technical footing and soft pine needle covered sections. I doubt I would wear these shoes on a very rocky terrain because of the lack of padding.

The trail was soft but not too wet so was not able to test out the grip-factor of the soles.

Overall one of the better The North Face trail shoes I have purchased recently.