Merrell Trail Glove 5 Reviewed, Tested & Compared in 2020 Review Facts
The original Merrell Trail Glove 5 shoe is a great shoe for runners who enjoy a minimalist feeling while on the trail. As the original version of the shoe, many runners felt there could be some slight improvements made, but that it was still a great shoe to run in. For those looking for a very lightweight, barefoot-style trail running shoe, this very well may be the shoe for you. We will go over what users liked and disliked about the shoe. Overall, it’s a good trail runner for an older model.
The outsole of the Merrell Trail Glove
is very much like the newer models of the shoe with very little cushioning or any added features. Featuring a Vibram outsole, it makes for a very durable and long-lasting shoe.
Besides the Vibram rubber, there’s not much else to talk about. However, the rubber used in the outsole of the shoe does contribute to the overall flexibility of the shoe, which many runners love.
Like the outsole, there aren’t too many added or special features to talk about. The most important feature of the midsole is the EVA midsole. It doesn’t provide a lot of cushioning, but then again, that wasn’t what it is for. This EVA foam is used to provide the runner with shock absorption. This light midsole keeps the overall shoe light in weight, while still providing a high level of flexibility and some protection underfoot.
The upper of the Merrell Trail Glove 5
isn’t anything extremely special either. The upper features a very traditional style mesh. The upper provides average breathability. Most runners stated that the upper is pretty comfortable for such a lightweight shoe and that it provides a soft feel for the top of the foot.
Along with the traditional style upper, it also features a normal lace-up. The difference between the upper in this model as compared to the newer models is that some runners feel this model was a little loose on the foot.
Not so loose that it was uncomfortable to run in, but they felt there was definitely some room for improvement.
The weight of the Merrell
Trail Glove is impressively light, though still a little heavier than the newest models. Weighing in at 6.8 ounces, the shoe weighs very little. This lack of weight helps give that minimalistic, barefoot feel.
While it does still happen to be a little heavier than the newer models, it's still a very lightweight shoe that runners love.
In terms of breathability, the Merrell Trail Glove 5 is about average. The shoe offers large pores that provide airflow, but that's about it.
Many runners who like the barefoot style shoe find this shoe very comfortable. For those who have never run in a minimalistic shoe, they may be surprised by the different feel. Many like how the shoe allows the runner to really feel the terrain beneath them, while still providing a high level of comfort. Some runners complained about how the upper of the shoe is a little bit lost in some spots. Luckily, Merrell fixed this in their newer models.
The style of the Merrell Trail Glove 5 looks a little bit old and outdated. Runners like that the shoe comes in very subtle color schemes, rather than bright, eye-catching colors. The upper of the shoe has larger holes for breathability, which makes the shoe look a little older as well, seeing as the new models slimmed down the size of those holes for a newer, more modern look.
The durability of the Merrell Trail Glove is very good. With the Vibram outsole, the shoe is meant to last runners a very long time while being used on all different kinds of terrain. The upper of the shoe is also reported to last a long time as well. The material of the upper isn’t known for breaking down too quickly. Also, the EVA midsole helps the shoe last by lessening the effect of the impact on the shoe and the runner’s foot.
The shoe doesn’t offer a whole lot in terms of protection. The biggest form of protection is the EVA midsole. Again, this midsole is going to protect the foot from shock while running on the rigorous terrain, which really is a must for a barefoot style shoe like this one. This offers the runner a great opportunity to have a barefoot feel while running, while still getting a little bit of shock protection. There isn’t a toe-cap in this model like there us in the newer models, so that may be a deciding factor if you are looking for some additional protection.
The responsiveness of the Trail Glove is great. Being so close to the ground, the runner is going to get a lot of responsiveness out of that alone.
Additionally, the shoe has very little cushioning
, meaning there’s not a whole lot to take away from the responsiveness of the foot while running. Overall, this is a very responsive trail running shoe
As expected with such a minimalist design, there isn’t much support in the Trail Glove. The only support comes from the EVA midsole, which offers a light amount of cushioning, specifically designed to lighten the impact of the ground to the feet. Besides that, the support in this shoe really is non-existent. The upper of the shoe doesn’t do a phenomenal job at keeping the foot locked in and secure.
The Trail Glove works best on a variety of trails
. Whether that be sand, gravel, or dirt, the Trail Glove is a versatile trail shoe that is built to last.
While it isn’t recommended for road running, it will still hold up pretty well.
The price of the Merrell Trail Glove is a little higher than average, coming in at around $110. This isn’t the most expensive shoe on the market, but it’s not the cheapest either. The biggest problem with the price for a lot of runners is that the shoe is outdated and still hasn’t seen much of a price drop. For the price of this shoe, you’re better off getting one of the newer models of the shoe, as you will get all the updates that come along with it.
The traction for the Trail Glove shoe is pretty decent. Since there have been newer models, the design is a little outdated, but that doesn’t make it ineffective. The good part about this shoe’s traction is that it will last the runner a long time. For the price of the shoe though, you could definitely find a shoe that has better traction than this one.
This is one of the best features of the Trail Glove - the flexibility. This is the highlight of the shoe, as it can practically bend in half.
The stability of the Merrell Trail Glove isn’t much since it’s such a minimalistic shoe. As stated before, there have been some issues with the upper being too last, which is another strike against stability.
Since it is a minimal running shoe
, stability isn’t expected to score all that high.
As for the drop on the Merrell Trail Glove, there isn’t any. It has a zero drop.
Again, this shoe was designed to give the runner a very natural feel, so having no drop would be essentially like running without a shoe on
Key Features of the Merrell Trail Glove
Key Features of the Merrell Trail Glove
• EVA Midsole
• Toe Protection Cap
• Vibram Outsole
• No Drop
• 6.8 ounces total per shoe
• Extreme flexibility
The bottom line is that the Merrell
Trail Glove is a decent minimalist running shoe. The shoe has a lot of room for improvements, which luckily were made in the newer models of the shoe.
Oddly enough though, the improvements made weren’t all that drastic, yet together they really made the shoe a lot better. For the price of the Merrell Trail Glove 5 shoe, you’re better off buying a newer model of the shoe.