10 Best Scarpa Running Shoes Reviewed

Scarpa is known for versatility and endurance in the running shoe game. They have unrivaled traction and durability while offering the comfort and cushioning needed for a running shoe that can hit pavement and trail.

We did the research so you could take less time searching for which 10 Best Scarpa Running Shoe is right for you. Scarpa has quite a lot to offer in their shoes and is popular across the running world for this reason. They have a shoe to fit pretty much any type of running need.

Scroll through and check out the FAQs we put together as well to help you along your journey in finding a great Scarpa running shoe. This information is there with our Evaluation Criteria to help inform and guide to make sure we are truly sharing the best Scarpa has to offer.

Standout Picks

Spin
The Scarpa Spin is the trail shoe you should consider when looking for something to protect your feet from the dangerous debris that can litter a hiking trail. This design goes to show that just because a shoe is minimalist doesn’t mean it can’t be protective or cushioned.
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Neutron
For a shoe that promises a top of the line design and is perfect for daily trail use, the Scarpa Neutron trail running shoe is undoubtedly the way to go.
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Proton GTX
The Scarpa Proton GTX trail running shoe will provide you with adequate grip and durability while running on a variety of terrain.
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Spark
The Scarpa Spark trail running shoe can offer you a faster ride that is in line with this shoe’s minimalist yet efficient design.
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Mystic
Perfect for the trail runner who is looking for a shoe that’s both rugged and stylish enough for everyday wear, the Scarpa Mystic running shoe is sure to complement a diverse and active lifestyle.
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Spin Ultra
Designed for those ultra-serious trail runners, Scarpa Spin Ultra adds a bit more stability and cushion to the Spin line. They use Vibram Litebase technology to keep your feet on the trails without the added weight and can take on some serious terrain. Spin Ultra is creating some serious waves in ultra-running shoe standards.
Scarpa Neutron 2
Scarpa Neutron 2 is an upgrade that offers more control and comfort to the Neutron line. It still offers the versatility of the Neutron while featuring updates that make the 2 much more focused on keeping you running longer and on almost any terrain without disappointment.
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Proton Alpine
As the name of this shoe suggests, the Scarpa Proton Alpine running shoe will take you to new and unforeseen heights.
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Tru Trail
The Scarpa Tru Trail running shoe is perfect for anyone who loves a minimalistic running shoe. Being the most lightweight shoe that Scarpa currently offers, the Tru Trail running shoe is sure to provide you with a breathable and effortless ride.
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Tempo
The Scarpa Tempo running shoe boasts a minimalist style in conjunction with a supportive cushioned and effortless ride.
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Criteria Used for Evaluation

Traction

For any type of trail running shoe, one of the most important factors that you should be considering when purchasing a shoe is the shoe’s traction or grip. One of the most important elements of determining the type of traction that you need while running is to consider the type of terrain on which you will be running on. The shoes on our list keep traction and grip in mind, while also keeping in mind that this shoe will be used off-road. The trail shoes on this list feature flatter outsole with varying space and size between their lugs. These factors allow for a stickier grip, similar to the type of grip that you would find on a shoe that’s been designed specifically for climbing. However, adding more traction to the bottom of the shoe is also going to result in more weight which is another important aspect to consider when you’re shopping for a trail shoe.

Protection

In addition to adequate traction, another important factor that is unique when it comes to purchasing a trail shoe involves how much protection the shoe offers. In fact, a shoe’s traction can be considered an aspect of its protective features, because the grip of a shoe can often save you from falling while you’re on a run. One key protective feature many trail shoe is a rock plate located on somewhere in the sole. A toe bumper and rugged overlays are also important protective features as well. These protective features are another reason why we chose to include the shoes that we’ve chosen on the 10 best Scarpa running shoes list. A rock plate in the sole is often going to be thin and inconspicuous, yet still be able to prevent any rocks or other types of debris from penetrating the sole of the shoe. The toe guard is likely to provide similar protection for the fronts of your feet. A toe guard can often make the difference between simply tripping over a troublesome rock and completely breaking your toes. Lastly, while the rock and toe plates provide protection to the bottoms and front of the feet, the durable overlays provide protection for the top portion of the foot. Overlays are important when you’re looking to protect the outside and instep of the foot, which is why many of the Scarpa shoes on our list have made the cut.

Fit

Lastly, a trail shoe with a solid fit is going to provide your foot with a greater sense of stability. If your foot feels unstable or the fit is too loose, there is a greater chance that you’ll end up rolling an ankle or other potential injuries. While on a trail run, a major factor that can influence your stability is the possibility of uneven surfaces. Rocks, roots, and other types of natural obstacles make for an unstable path, so it is essential to have a proper fitting shoe. Some of the features on a shoe that contribute to the fit include denser midsoles, heel wraps, and a more supportive upper. Though these features are seen in road shoes, they are especially important in trail shoes. All of these factors combine to provide a more secure fit for the foot. While on a trail, a proper fit for your shoe is going to allow for a faster response time and reduce the possibility of injury. For these reasons, this is another reason why the shoes we choose made it onto our 10 best Scarpa running shoe list.

10 Best Scarpa Running Shoes

1. Spin

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Spin
Amazon Link

The Scarpa Spin is the trail shoe you should consider when looking for something to protect your feet from the dangerous debris that can litter a hiking trail. This design goes to show that just because a shoe is minimalist doesn’t mean it can’t be protective or cushioned.

Read more

Traction
The Scarpa Spin is made with the Megagrip from Vibram, ensuring reliable traction while on the trail. The minimalist design also means the wearer can use their own natural toe spread to grip the road, the wearer and shoe working together to find the surest footing on the trail.

Protection
The Spin has a flexible rock plate, guaranteeing not only protection from the rocks on the path but also that the protection will move with you.

Fit
The Scarpa brand is famous for its fit, being some of the best fitting shoes were have ever heard feedback for. Although getting the best fit usually means having measurement help in the store, the Scarpa system means you will likely not have to do any sizing up or down like you may have to with some brands.

Value
The Spin is priced similarly to other Scarpa shoes. Spin can be considered a little pricey, but you receive a very high-quality minimalist trail running shoe for your investment; it’s well worth the price.

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2. Neutron

Where to buy
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Neutron
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For a shoe that promises a top of the line design and is perfect for daily trail use, the Scarpa Neutron trail running shoe is undoubtedly the way to go.

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Traction
Similar to many other shoes on this list, the Scarpa Neutron features a Vibram rubber outsole which offers great grip on both trails and the mud.

Protection
The welded synthetic ribs on either side of this shoe offers lateral support and protection for the foot. The leather and mesh upper combination is also breathable and dries quickly when wet.

Fit
This shoe features an arch-wrap construction around its midsole, which allows the foot to feel maximally secure.

Value
This shoe is slightly more expensive than others that we’ve seen on this list, but the quality of this shoe makes the price worthwhile for most.

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3. Proton GTX

Where to buy
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Proton GTX
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The Scarpa Proton GTX trail running shoe will provide you with adequate grip and durability while running on a variety of terrain.

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Traction
This shoe’s outsole is made of Vibram's Megagrip technology. The sole’s rubber to become sticky when terrain is slick or wet.

Protection
In addition to the Vibram outsole, this shoe also comes with a full-length rock plate and a rubber toe bumper. Both of these features keep your feet extremely insulated and protected.

Fit
The forefoot of this shoe is a medium width and will allow for a roomy feeling in the front of the foot.

Value
This shoe is more affordable than some of the other shoes that we’ve seen on this list thus far.

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4. Spark

Where to buy
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Spark
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The Scarpa Spark trail running shoe can offer you a faster ride that is in line with this shoe’s minimalist yet efficient design.

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Traction
The sole of this shoe has been designed with multi-dimensional helix lugs throughout it. This design allows for the sole of this shoe to provide deep and superior traction, especially on a muddy or wet trail.

Protection
In addition to the helix lugs on the sole, this shoe’s also been designed with a Speedlite sole. This design feature diminishes foot fatigue and provides more shock absorbency.

Fit
Both the midsole and the forefoot of this shoe is made with an EVA compression foam, meaning that the shoe forms to your foot the more often you wear it.

Value
This shoe is a good value in terms of quality of materials and price. It is similarly priced to many of the other shoes that have been compiled onto this list.

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5. Mystic

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Mystic
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Perfect for the trail runner who is looking for a shoe that’s both rugged and stylish enough for everyday wear, the Scarpa Mystic running shoe is sure to complement a diverse and active lifestyle.

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Traction
The outsole of this shoe has been built with the same Vibram rubber that we’ve seen in most of the other Scarpa running shoes thus far, but with a vertical element that’s been built into the toe to provide the shoe with a greater ability to climb.

Protection
The toe of this shoe also features a rubber toe rand, which is able to protect the foot from rocks and other types of debris.

Fit
This shoe is designed with an internal half-bootie, which provides a secure fit for the shoe. It also comes with added Achilles cushion.

Value
Due to this shoe’s diversity, you’re truly getting a great value for this type of shoe.

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6. Spin Ultra

Where to buy
Spin Ultra
Spin Ultra front
Spin Ultra back look
Spin Ultra bottom look
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Designed for those ultra-serious trail runners, Scarpa Spin Ultra adds a bit more stability and cushion to the Spin line. They use Vibram Litebase technology to keep your feet on the trails without the added weight and can take on some serious terrain. Spin Ultra is creating some serious waves in ultra-running shoe standards.

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Traction

Vibram should say it all. Scarpa is known for their aggressive, high-performance Vibram rubber soles, it is what sets them apart from trail running competition.

Scara Spin Ultra’s multi-directional lugs are a combination of Vibrams thinner Litebase technology and Megagrip compound, ensuring the best grip a running shoe can offer. Although the Litebase is 40 to 50% thinner, which cuts down on weight, it doesn't affect the durability of the Spin Ultra design.

Protection

This ultra design from Scarpa has reinforced upper mesh that covers the whole shoe and is lined with polyester to aid in keeping as much debris out as possible. This feature also allows for better ventilation and drainage.

Furthermore, the micro-nubuck pattern within the mesh blends in with the lacing system, which is all part of a sock-like fit inside the shoe. The mesh also integrates into the TPU cap in the toe, which protects against undesired sharp rocks and other debris stubbing your toes.

Fit

Scarpa Spin Ultra works with a Sock-fit system to keep the shoe snug to the foot without taking flexibility and agility away from the shoe design. There is also added cushioning to the Spin Ulta, making it one of the more cushioned in their line.

This extra padding comes in the form of a dual Eva midsole layering that adds firmness for a better energy transfer while still offering enough stability and protection to keep your feet comfortable longer. Moreover, a 25mm stack works with Eva cushioning to maintain that high level of stability and comfort as well.

Spin Ultra’s added cut-outs for the ankle bones and a padded notch for the Achilles. The tongue is also padded with a gusset in the midsection to keep it from sliding around. All this extra padding is ideal for keeping you stable in rocky situations.

Value

We could go on and on all day about this upgraded Scarpa design, however, there are other shoes on the list as well with just as much credibility. These run about average in cost as the rest as well. They are a newer version to 2019 Scarpa Line up and priced as new releases usually are. But we are sure once you get them tied, you won’t be regretting the buy.

7. Scarpa Neutron 2

Where to buy
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Scarpa Neutron 2
the front of Scarpa Neutron 2
the back of Scarpa Neutron 2
the bottom of Scarpa Neutron 2
the side look of Scarpa Neutron 2
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Scarpa Neutron 2 is an upgrade that offers more control and comfort to the Neutron line. It still offers the versatility of the Neutron while featuring updates that make the 2 much more focused on keeping you running longer and on almost any terrain without disappointment.

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Traction

The Neutron 2 has Vibrams Megagrip outer sole technology in the lugs, which offers aggressive traction on some of the most unstable terrains. The lugs are spaced just right and are a bit more shallow along the toe and heel, offering a sturdy solid grip with every impact.

Scarpa also added inserts that offer a more flexible toebox. This helps with the dig when you are on more technical trails while offering a softer ride when transitioning to the pavement. The shallowness of the lugs also provides great transition and is another reason the Scarpa Neuton 2’s are that much more versatile.

Protection

Offering the TPU toecap integrated with the Micro-Nubuck mesh, the Neutron 2 gives you a durable all over design that was made to protect your feet first and foremost. The material protects against unwanted debris while giving solid airflow and drainage to the shoe design.

The TPU toe keeps the toes protected from rocks, roots and other flyby debris without interfering with the comfort and flexibility the toe box offers. Furthermore, the midsole has an H-Eva plate that works with the 6mm, drop design to give you even more stability, comfort, and protection throughout the fit of the shoe.

Fit

Within the shoe, there is a soft polyester lining that backs the mesh, which is the core of the Sock-fit design. This makes for a snug fit that secures the foot from sliding around without feeling restricted.

Scarpa Neutron 2 also has a padded ankle that extends into the tongue, adding a nice touch to the all ver comfort of the shoe. All this with the wider toebox design has consumers raving that the neutron 2 is basically already broken in for you. You just need to slip them on and you're ready to blaze the trails.

Value

These are gradually getting less and less pricey as time goes by. Not due to any reason other than time itself. They are a great value no matter where you purchase them. For the cost, you get all the comfort, durability and versatility you need in one of the 10 best running shoes Scarpa offers.

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8. Proton Alpine

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Proton Alpine
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As the name of this shoe suggests, the Scarpa Proton Alpine running shoe will take you to new and unforeseen heights.

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Traction
This shoe features an EVA foam midsole and a 10mm heel-to-toe drop. These two features combined allow the foot to feel both comfortable and more importantly supported while going over difficult terrain.

Protection
This shoe is made with a synthetic leather lining, which offers your foot ample protection from the elements. The heel cage design on this shoe reinforces the protective elements of the Scarpa Proton Alpine.

Fit
The overlays on this particular running shoe are made of TPU, or thermoplastic polyurethane. This means that the overlays work with your foot, providing elasticity and structure. The reinforced heel also adds to the overall fit.

Value
The value of this shoe is about average when compared to other Scarpa shoes.

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9. Tru Trail

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Tru Trail
Amazon Link

The Scarpa Tru Trail running shoe is perfect for anyone who loves a minimalistic running shoe. Being the most lightweight shoe that Scarpa currently offers, the Tru Trail running shoe is sure to provide you with a breathable and effortless ride.

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Traction
The sole of this shoe has been designed with HDR rubber. HDR stands for High Dynamic Rubber and can offer you more grip for when you’re traveling on mid, gravel, or even slippery rocks.

Protection
The midsole of this shoe is designed with injected EVA foam to protect your feet through shock absorbency. The midsole of this shoe also contains an EVA protective plate in its forefoot. Additionally, a forefoot strike plate made of Hi-Tensilew fabric built into the shoe provides added stability. This allows for protection while still being flexible.

Fit
The upper of this shoe features an air mesh design, which provides breathability and lightness. In conjunction with this mesh, it’s also been designed with a webbed ribcage with synthetic leather reinforcements. This allows for a stable, secure and cool fit.

Value
This shoe is a great offer you a great value in comparison with some of the other shoes that we’ve seen on this list.

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10. Tempo

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Tempo
Amazon Link

The Scarpa Tempo running shoe boasts a minimalist style in conjunction with a supportive cushioned and effortless ride.

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Traction
Similar to the Scarpa Spark running shoe, the Tempo is designed with a Speedlite sole which provides maximum shock absorbency as well as enhanced grip on particularly wet or muddy terrain.

Protection
The Tempo comes with an ESS strike plate in the forefoot that will prevent rocks and other types of debris from injuring your foot.

Fit
This shoe boasts a minimal 6mm heel-to-toe drop, and offers a multi-density EVA foam in its midsole. Both of these features combine to provide a fit that is adaptive and malleable.

Value
This shoe is priced at a good value because it’s been on the market for a while, yet will maintain its reputation as being a reliable Scarpa product.

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Sources

  1. Scott Dunlap, Be Weary of Gore-Tex Running Shoes (Knoxville News Sentinel), Trail Running Website
  2. Phillip Werner, Scarpa Spark Trail Running Shoe, Hiking Website
  3. Jason Brozek, Scarpa Proton, Running Shoe Informational Site
  4. Shoes and Gear, Do I Really Need a Trail Shoe? , Informational Running Website
  5. Muck Boot Store, So What's So Awesome About Vibram Soles?, Boot Product Information Website
  6. Trail Running Magazine, Trail Shoe Review: Scarpa Atom, Shoe Review Page
  7. Linzay Logan, Choosing a Trail Running Shoe That's Right for You, Informational Running Shoe Website
  8. Rachel Peters, What Run Oregon is Wearing: Scarpa Proton Alpine Running Shoe, Informational Running Blog

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Inside RunnerClick Pro, runners of all strengths come together to meet and support one another, get answers to burning questions, learn from experts, participate in personal challenges, and more.