Spring’s top shoes

Looking for shoes? Take the stress out of looking for the right pair with some top choices from the Outdoor Gear Exchange and Ski Rack in downtown Burlington. From trails to pavement, here are eight pairs of shoes that will go as far as you can.

Chris Sussman — Outdoor Gear Exchange

As a dedicated trail runner, Chris Sussman at Burlington’s Outdoor Gear Exchange admits that most of his selections were geared towards tackling roots, rocks, mud and gravel.

“It’s what I run in most of the time,” he says.

Here are some of his top picks for men and women:

Sussman’s first pick was the Altra Superior 2.0, a lightweight and aggressively treaded shoe with zero drop, placing the heel and forefoot an equal distance from the ground.

Price: $110


For runners itching to get back out on the trails after a long winter, Sussman recommends Solomon’s Fellraiser, a low-profile, lightweight and fast-drying shoe with an aggressively treaded sole that’s best suited for mud season, gravel or even obstacle races like Tough Mudders and Spartan Races.

“While it’s not the best choice for the roads, these excel in the sloppiest conditions,” he says.

Price: $110


Long-known for producing cycling shoes and apparel, Pearl Izumi releases the N2, a trail running shoe that’s light enough to be nimble at 10 ounces and still rugged enough for tough trail conditions with a self-cleaning lug and a forefoot rock-plate. The N2 also has a seamless upper to prevent any rubbing against the foot.


Adidas releases the Terrex Boost, dedicated trail shoe with new Boost cushioning technology. The Terrex Boost also features polyurethane construction for durability and a sole designed by tire company Continental that’s sticky and aggressively studded.

Price: $160


Sussman’s top picks for women’s running include the Bare Access Ultra by shoe and boot company Merrell. The Bare Access Ultra is a low-profile running shoe for runners used to a minimal sneaker.

Price: $100


Sussman says Merrell’s Mix Master Move as a versatile option for women runners looking to run on trails and roads with appropriate cushioning and traction for both environments. He also says it’s a great fitness shoe for wearing to the gym.

Price: $100


For all levels of trail and road running, Sussman also indicated the La Sportiva Helios by as another versatile shoe that can run no matter the conditions. The Helios has a flexibile midsole to adapt to trail features and mesh that lets water drain while keeping out silt and sand.

Price: $120


Emily Davis – Ski Rack

An accomplished track and cross-country runner, Emily Davis at Ski Rack based her top picks on a variety of shapes and fits for different types of feet. Here are her six picks for men and women looking to spend time pounding the pavement.


Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 is a support shoe designed for road runners with a medium to high arch. This updated version of the popular Adrenaline features BioMoGo DNA cushioning and a segmented crash pad for a smooth heel-to-toe transition.

Price: $120


The Brooks Ravenna 5 rides the line between a support and guidance shoe with a blend of cushion and stability great for road runners. Like the Adrenaline, the Ravenna features patented BioMoGo DNA cushioning and a segmented crash pad.

Price: $116


An update from the popular Inspire 9 and 10 models, the Mizuno Wave Inspire 11 combines guidance and cushion with a slightly wider toebox, internal stabilizing straps and a firmer toe plate for a distinct rebound from one step to another.

Price: $119


Mizuno’s Wave Paradox uses lightweight construction to create a shoe for over-pronation control that’s light and moves quickly. A SmoothRide engineered sole creates a rocking chair motion from the back of the foot to the front.

Price: $139


The 16th iteration of the popular Cumulus offers more cushioning than any of its predecessors and is ideal for under-pronators and neutral runners. In addition to Gel cushioning units, the Asics Gel Cumulus 16 features an improved guidance system to enhance the foot’s natural gait.

Price; $115


Neutral to sleight over-pronators will enjoy the Asics GT 2000, the lightest edition of the GT in the shoe’s 20-year lifespan. At 8.5 ounces, the weight savings is due to an improved heel and midsole stabilization systems.

Price: $130

Evan Johnson

Evan Johnson is the staff writer for Vermont Sports Magazine. The native Vermonter enjoys steep and deep skiing and wandering all over the state by Subaru. Find him on Twitter at @evanisathome.