Merrell All Out Crush 2 Review Facts
Since the 1980s, Merrell has been creating high-quality footwear that enables runners of all levels to take on all types of terrains. Though known mainly for their hiking boots, they’ve also garnered praise for their various trail running shoes. Their All Out Crush line is one of their best-received, thanks to its supportive comfort and protective yet breathable wear. All of these can be found in the All Out Crush 2, along with durable traction and a minimalist design.
Merrell's trademarked M-Select GRIP
compound is used to create the All Out Crush 2's outsole. This durable material keeps the rest of the shoe protected from potential damage and ensures incredible traction on more challenging surfaces. Unique, tri-pointed gripping lugs make up its tread pattern, and they're semi-aggressive to make the shoe's wear more versatile. Finally, flex grooves are carved into the forefoot and heel to allow an easier and more natural range of motion.
Though many brands are now engineering their own midsole technologies, Merrell instead utilizes a full-length EVA foam
unit for the majority of the All Out Crush 2's midsole. On its own, it continuously cushions the runner while also providing a great deal of shock absorption and energy transfer. Between the midsole and outsole is a protective layer known as the TrailProtect pad, which safeguards the underfoot against jagged, uneven surfaces. For added cushioning, an EVA footbed has been fixed onto the platform. All of these features work together to create an incredibly comfortable and responsive ride.
Without a doubt, the All Out Crush 2's biggest changes were made to its upper. Durable synthetic mesh is used all over, and it features multiple layers in order to keep trail debris out of the foot chamber. At the same time, it permits unrestricted ventilation and allows water to drain out completely while running through wet environments. The heel of the shoe is lined with Lycra
for an added stretch to make insertion easier and prevent skin irritations. Heavy stitched-on overlays have been swapped out for thinner printed-on ones to eliminate bulk and keep this shoe as lightweight as possible. They still provide necessary structure and are integrated with the traditional lacing system to ensure a truly secure fit. As with its predecessor, there are reflective details to ensure safer running through low-light areas.
The All Out Crush 2 is surprisingly lightweight for a trail running shoe, with men's sizes weighing 8 oz. and women's weighing around 6.5 oz. Most trailing enthusiasts are used to their footwear having some added density, as it lets them know that they'll be protected when running across rugged surfaces. However, all of the protective features within this model have been carefully engineered to be as light as possible, giving the runner an agile wear that doesn't sacrifice security. And the fact that it doesn't require any heavy overlays is also a major plus to those who prefer minimalist footwear. However, some trail runners aren't exactly happy with this quality. They believe that it's the shoe's lightweight and agile wear that causes them to feel less stable on more technical trails.
The All Out Crush 2's synthetic mesh upper gives runners a ton of breathability without sacrificing any protective qualities. It's multi-layered to keep trail debris completely out of the foot chamber, and TPU overlays give structure while safeguarding against accidental bumps. Yet it still provides unrestricted airflow throughout much of the foot, ensuring that hotspots are completely eliminated. Even better, it allows water to drain out quickly while running through wet environments. This means a much dryer and more comfortable run that greatly reduces the risks of foot odor and irritations.
Though the All Out Crush 2 is meant for trail running, and similar models focus more on protection, reviewers seem to be most impressed with its level of comfort
. As the TrailProtect safeguards the underfoot from jagged surfaces, its EVA foam midsole and fixed EVA footbed keep it cushioned and supported. It also provides enough shock absorption to ensure a completely pain-free wear. The synthetic mesh upper is highly breathable and even drains water to keep the foot cool and dry all day. Despite this, it's still able to keep the foot chamber free of any trailing debris. When paired with its soft lining, runners are given incredibly stable comfort without any irritation. Be warned, however, as reviews indicate that this model doesn't always fit true to size.
Though the All Out Crush 2 was designed for rugged trails, it has the external design of a stylish casual running shoe. Its predecessor's thick, stitched-on overlays are swapped out for printed-on ones to give a lighter and much sleeker appearance. Its midsole features a geometric pattern that's set in a gradient effect, and the heel's overlays are decked out in a paint-splatter design. The only downside is that its color options are limited. While black/green and grey
are available in both men's and women's sizes, men also have a black/neon option.
According to most online reviews, the All Out Crush 2 holds up incredibly well in rugged environments. Its M-Select GRIP outsole is able to resist abrasion even after many intense runs. Though its EVA foam midsole holds up reasonably well, the material is still prone to damage after some time. Fortunately, a TrailProtect pad is included to help the sole unit last longer against rough and jagged surfaces. Though mesh materials typically don’t last long on trails, this model features a synthetic upper that’s much more resistant to wear and tear. And the inclusion of printed-on TPU overlays ensures that it will be able to retain its shape for longer.
Though it doesn't look nearly as protective as many other trail running shoes on the market, reviewers have been surprised by what the All Out Crush 2 has to offer. Aside from providing incredibly secure traction, its durable M-Select GRIP outsole also safeguards the rest of the shoe from potential damage. The EVA foam midsole cushions the foot and absorbs shock to reduce the amount of pain and fatigue felt by the end of the day. Between these features is the TrailProtect pad, serving as an added shield against jagged surfaces and other trailing hazards. The multiple layers of its synthetic mesh upper keep trailing debris out of the foot chamber while still permitting breathability and proper drainage. And though its overlays are now thinner and printed on, they still maintain structure and work to keep the foot properly secure.
As stated before, the All Out Crush 2 utilizes EVA foam for its midsole unit and footbed. With many brands now engineering their own midsole material to provide a more enhanced and more customized wear, its qualities don't seem nearly as impressive by comparison. Still, reviewers seem to be satisfied enough with this feature's level of responsiveness
. With the midsole and footbed working together, and a TrailProtect pad in place underneath for extra safety, it's able to efficiently absorb the impact of each strike and transfer it into an added boost each time the runner lifts their foot.
Though the All Out Crush 2's EVA foam midsole already provides plenty of support on its own, it gets some added help from the shoe's other features. The TrailProtect pad serves as a base that safeguards the rest of the shoe from potential damage, which also aids the already durable outsole. An EVA footbed is also fixed in for an added layer of cushioning and responsiveness, ensuring that the foot receives extra support during challenging runs. Even the upper gets some much-needed support in the form of protective overlays and padding around the collar.
From the outside, the All Out Crush looks more like an everyday running shoe than an aggressive trailing model. However, its carefully engineered materials and lightweight yet durable design prove otherwise. Every feature from its M-Select GRIP outsole to its synthetic mesh upper functions incredibly well on rocky terrains and forest trails. It also works especially well in wet environments, since it not only drains water out of the foot chamber but also dries quickly even after being washed. There is, however, no indication of how well it transitions onto paved roads
Compared to many other trail running shoes on the market, the All Out Crush 2 is very reasonably priced. Across multiple online outlets, including Running Warehouse and Merrell's own website, this model is sold for only $100. Not only is this below the average price range for high-quality running shoes, but it's also an incredible bargain considering the shoe's overall wear. Its high levels of comfort, durability, and traction have all been praised across that board, making it well worth every dollar spent.
Runners seem to be very happy with the All Out Crush 2's level of traction. Its M-Select GRIP outsole features a number of semi-aggressive, tri-pointed gripping lugs that prove to be very secure on rocky terrains and wet ground. And because its tread pattern doesn't get clogged easily, it's also ideal for running through mud. However, it's still not without its drawbacks. There are some reviewers who say it's not intended for more technical trails, and loose surfaces such as sand
or gravel can become a problem.
Despite its intended purpose, and the fact that most trailing shoes focus more on stability, the All Out Crush 2 is actually very easy to move around in. Its outsole is outfitted with flex grooves that run across the forefoot and heel to make natural movement possible. Its EVA foam midsole and footbed are also incredibly pliable on their own, which adds greatly to the runner's level of comfort. The same can be said for its synthetic mesh upper, which is stabilized only by thin TPU overlays and a traditional lacing system. With that said, some runners do wish it was a bit stiffer to ensure more protection and structure.
Though it does prove to be very agile on more challenging terrains, reviews do indicate that the All Out Crush 2 isn’t all that stable. Reviews indicate that this is due to its lightweight build and lack of any corrective features within its midsole or upper. Its outsole does give incredible traction that keeps the runner moving along safely, and the EVA foam midsole enhances this with its shock-absorbing properties. Even the TPU overlays of its upper are enough to help it maintain its shape and make the lacing system even more secure. Still, some reviewers feel that this shoe is too agile for their liking and would prefer something with more mass and structure that would get their gait corrected on challenging surfaces.
It's quite common for trail running shoes to have a lower-than-average drop height, as it gives the runner much better balance and posture as they travel across challenging terrains. With a heel height of 23mm and a toe height of 17mm, the All Out Crush 2's 6mm drop allows both a more natural gait cycle and a decent amount of heel cushioning for greater comfort. However, it may not be fit for those who prefer their footwear with a zero drop platform.
-M-Select GRIP outsole for strong traction
-EVA foam midsole cushions and absorbs shock
-Fixed EVA insole gives added supportive cushioning
-TrailProtect pad to safeguard against jagged trails
-Synthetic mesh upper with printed TPU overlays
-6mm heel-to-toe drop height
-Limited colorways available
As stated several times before, the Merrell All Out Crush 2 doesn't exactly look like your typical trail running shoe. It also lacks the stability features and added weight that many runners look for in their trailing footwear. Despite this, reviewers say that its agile wear, high levels of comfort and durability, and incredible traction on rocky terrains make it a staple for both casual runs and competitions. And the shoe's minimalist design and striking patterns only make it that much more appealing. For those who prefer plenty of ground control along with comfortable cushioning, this shoe could easily become a staple for their runs.