Merrell Moab 2

8.2
8.2 score
[Editors rating (8.2)] = Runnerclick score (8.2)/10

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Editor rating: 8.2 / 10
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Merrell Moab 2 Review Facts
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With an origin story that starts with an American cowboy boot added to an Italian boot manufacturing process, you can only wonder where it goes from there. Merrell shoes opened up shop with 4 core values: comfort, durability, design, and versatility. They are inherent in every design and every model of shoe they have put into rotation since 1981. They even kept the Wilderness boot, one of the earliest Merrell styles, in the line today. Yes, even with their signature blue laces. But they’re not on the Moab 2. Named Moab, for “Mother of All Boots,” it is not over-claiming when they added the level of comfort to the upgrade on the original model. These shoes speak for themselves.

The cushioned collar and tongue, supportive footbed and fresh from the box flexibility already focus on those core values Merrell prides itself in. Comfortable from the moment you slide the Moab 2 onto your foot, this hiking shoe works double duty with its extra padding in the heel. It adds trail isolation and keeps the heel in place for additional underfoot protection. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The Merrill Moab 2 kept the majority of the original, well-loved, details with slight improvements here and there while recognizing that an all-time favorite doesn’t need that much changing. Some simple updates and the Moab 2 is ready for trails, mud, dirt, gravel, whatever you want.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Mesh upper 
  • Extra padding in heel 
  • Ready right out of the box
  • Silicon bands built into the upper
  • High quality rubber on outsole 
  • Refined insole with arch support
Cons
  • Average traction in mud
  • Too flexible for heavy loads or technical trails
Outsole
Outsole

Outsole

The outsole of the Merrell Moab 2 is a thicker Vibram TC5 rubber which combines over 70 years of experience in sport-specific design to create the rubber compound that provides a superior grip, extreme durability, and solid traction. This is the same rubber featured in the original Moab as well as the same tread pattern so Merrell didn’t change too much in this part of the shoe. With a proven long life, they didn’t need to make adjustments to increase the all-around traction. As far as design, the mix of circles, open channels and narrow and thick 5 mm lugs give great traction on rock and dirt.
Midsole
Midsole

Midsole

The Merrell Moab 2 uses a firm EVA foam midsole for stability and comfort, similar to the original Moab. Where it differs is with the refined insole, designed for additional arch support and a molded heel cup to hold the foot securely into the base of the shoe for a more stable, comfortable ride. The sculpted insole also adds to the support of the shoe as the movement is reduced, causing the outsole and upper to flex naturally with your gait.
Upper
Upper

Upper

The upper on the Merrell Moab 2 is also similar to the original model. When a shoe is a favorite for over 10 years, you just don’t make a lot of drastic changes. The suede leather is a more durable material than on the original Moab and they’ve added two silicon bands into the upper material running lengthwise around the inside and outside of the foot. These bands provide additional structure and reduce ankle rolls on rough terrain. The mesh along the sides and top keep the shoe breathable, cool and dry just as the original did. If you choose the waterproof option, a layer of Gore Tex would be just beneath the mesh, reducing breathability just a bit but keeping the moisture away from your foot.
Weight
Weight

Weight

Each one of the Merrell Moab 2shoes weights just around 2 pounds. With the additional outsole and rubber for traction, this shoe weighs around the average hiking shoe weight. The mesh upper and EVA foam lighten the load slightly but the addition of the suede on the upper, cushioning around the heel, and sculpted insole do add to the overall weight.
Breathability
Breathability

Breathability

When you’re on a good hike, the last thing you want to worry about is wet, sweaty feet. You want your feet to stay cool and dry while still protected from the elements. The Merrell Moab 2 has created a comfortable, breathable shoe with a mesh upper that is still supportive enough for an average hike and breathable even with the performance suede leather overlays. The mesh cutouts in the upper provide needed air flow into and over the foot, helping to evaporate any excess moisture while the Bellows, closed-cell foam in the tongue helps to keep moisture and debris away from your feet.
Comfort
Comfort

Comfort

There’s nothing worse than being at the top of a beautiful mountain hike and realizing that your feet are not happy and that these shoes were probably not the right choice for this activity. The Merrill design is all about comfort. That is one of the company’s main core values. The Moab 2 is an extremely comfortable hiking shoe, coming from the original favorite and combining bits and pieces of trail running technology. With the mesh and suede upper, the sculpted insole for arch support and heel comfort, EVA foam midsole and Vibram rubber outsole, this shoe has all of its bases covered. There is no piece that doesn’t focus on your comfort. The shoe has just the right amount of flexibility in the outsole and midsole to traverse rougher terrain without being unforgiving and difficult.
Style
Style

Style

The Merrell Moab 2 is a working shoe. It is good looking for its function. With a heavy tread on the sole, a synthetic mesh and suede leather upper, it is a protective hiking shoe that looks good on the foot. The base color is gray but with an orange accent on the lace loops and a small accent on the heel. With that said, the shoe is nice-looking. A solid color with one accent throughout shows the consistency that Merrell and the Moab model are known for. They didn’t want to take any attention away from the functionality of the shoe. They did make it fairly stylish while staying true to the original version. The Merrell logo is also in orange along the midsole. The synthetic mesh is a slightly lighter gray than the suede leather upper and the tongue has a small circular orange M. The Moab 2 is an attractive, functional hiking shoe.
Durability
Durability

Durability

You need your hiking shoes to be durable. You plan to put them through terrain that is not ordinarily accessed and you need them to stand up to the challenge. The Merrell Moab 2 is more of a hiking shoe than a trail runner but it does have the increased durability needed in a hiking shoe, though not so much that it can’t be worn for a shorter trail run. The original Moab was an incredibly durable model and this updated version is no different. The high-quality rubber outsole is thick with a 5mm lug depth for great traction on variable terrain.
Protection
Protection

Protection

The Merrell Moab 2 provides modest stability and support compared to traditional hiking boots. As a low top option, it’s still less prone to ankle rolls on tougher, rockier terrain as opposed to a trail shoe. The two silicon bands built into the upper material provide more structure and hold the foot sturdy. The 5mm lugs dig into loose dirt and gravel, providing additional traction, holding your foot steady while hiking. The mesh is incredibly breathable, keeping the foot cool and dry, reducing rubbing and irritation with wet materials.
Responsiveness
Responsiveness

Responsiveness

The Merrell Moab 2 has an EVA foam midsole over the full length of the shoe that absorbs part of the shock of impact but isn’t designed to refocus any energy. As a hiking shoe, the focus is more on stability and tread than focusing on speed and agility.
Support
Support

Support

The Merrell Moab 2 is a supportive hiking shoe. The synthetic mesh upper is held in place by a natural suede leather support and protection straps. The two silicon bands built into the upper material run lengthwise around the inside and outside of the foot to provide more support to keep the ankle from rolling. The heel cup seats the heel deeper into the midsole, securing it to the base of the shoe so limited movement is allowed, securing the foot and protecting from injury. Additional arch support is built into the insole, providing even more support through the midfoot.
Terrain
Terrain

Terrain

The Merrell Moab 2 is a hiking shoe with trail runner tendencies. This makes it good for a diverse terrain while limiting it to lighter trails and shorter trail runs. With the 5mm tread, it does have great traction but it’s just not built for the more challenging hikes.
Price
Price

Price

With the focus of the company on being the Mother Of All Boots and holding firm to the four core values, the Merrell Moab 2 fulfills those and more. With the years of experience and the technology that has evolved over time, these shoes could be priced much higher. As it stands, they are a great deal for the quality and reputation that Merrell brings to the table.
Traction
Traction

Traction

The Merrell Moab 2 is a hiking shoe with trail shoe traits. The 5mm rubber treads on the outsole provide a good amount of grip while the Vibram TC5 outsole holds the ground close, with no concern toward loose rocks, dirt or other debris.
Flexibility
Flexibility

Flexibility

With a mesh upper and natural leather supports, the upper on the Merrell Moab 2 flexes naturally with foot movement while still being supported by the silicon bands and leather supports. The EVA foam around the midsole paired with the Vibram rubber on the outsole also flexes along natural flex lines. The tread design on the outsole also allows for additional movement over a variety of terrains and gravel types.
Stability
Stability

Stability

The Merrell Moab 2 has stability built into the upper via the natural suede leather supports and two silicon bands built into the upper material, running lengthwise around the inside and outside of the foot. This provides additional structure and reduces potential ankle rolls. The moderately padded heel collar holds the Achilles in place and down into the heel cup for stability. The durable EVA foam provides added stability and to keep the foot in the base of the shoe. With the full upper and midsole devoted to holding the foot in place, this shoe is a very stable option.
Drop
Drop

Drop

As a hiking shoe, the drop tends to make a hike more comfortable. We weren’t able to locate a measurement on the drop of Merrell Moab 2. Based on pictures only, the toe is situated above where the heel ends, appearing to be an average drop. Though not a natural ride, this shoe does have a thicker midsole than most and is designed for hiking so you should expect an average drop.
Key Features
Key Features

Key Features

• Mesh upper with natural suede supports for a flexible, breathable feel
• 2 silicon bands built into upper for additional support and reduced ankle rolls
• 5mm thick tread for maneuvering diverse terrain with full traction
• Vibram TC5 Outsole for a better grip
• Closed-cell foam tongue keeps moisture and debris out of the shoe
Bottom Line
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

The Merrell Moab 2 is an updated version from the original over 10 years ago. With some key upgrades, this shoe continues to be a reliable, high quality hiking shoe with great breathability, a sculpted insole and arch support. Extra padding in the heel for trail isolation and underfoot protection add to the perks of this upgrade. The molded heel cup and arch support, as well as the silicon support bands, are additions that add to stability and overall comfort. This shoe is well worth the investment and will last you for many miles to come. It is priced about the middle of the road but also appropriate for the technology and materials used in this upgrade. The Merrell Moab 2 is a great lightweight hiking shoe.