Light, Fast & Free: 2014 Summer Trail Running Shoe Buyer’s Guide

Scarpa Ignite

Scarpa Ignite, $125

10.2 oz. (men’s), 9.0 oz. (women’s)

18 mm (heel), 10 mm forefoot

Category: MOUNTAIN MARAUDER

Fit: Although it’s snug in the heel and midfoot, it has more ample room in the forefoot.

Feel: A true rugged mountain runner, only without the extra weight or overbearing outsole lugs, the Ignite is the poster child of the modern technical trail runner. It has more technical capabilities than a moderate hybrid (namely protection and traction), but it’s flexible enough to offer consistent high-cadence performance on less rugged trails.

Ride: With a light, flexible and durable (but not overbuilt) construction, it can move as fast and agile as you want to go without sacrificing necessary protection (it has a full-length, flexible rock plate). The moderate outsole lugs offer aggressive traction for a variety of surfaces, but it’s still subtle enough to run on smoother surfaces (except for paved roads). “Reliable, safe and secure on harder, more challenging trails,” one tester said.

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