The North Face Mountain Sneaker

The North Face Mountain Sneaker is a performance-oriented hiking shoe that is durable, sturdy, and offers great traction on a variety of terrains. The upper is breathable enough so as to not cause discomfort, and the waterproof membrane makes this a really practical hiking shoe. On top of that, the stylish and beautiful design of this hiking shoe creates a bridge between the lifestyle and hiking category, making this sneaker a winner in both fields. The XtraFoam™ midsole cushioning system and the CRADLE heel stabilization technology are just some of the great features that this shoe has. The only drawback to this sneaker is the laces which are inadequate for the way the upper is constructed, but those can be easily changes, so it’s nothing to sweat about.

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Where to Buy
Moosejaw Link
See Deal
Where to Buy
Moosejaw Link
See Deal
Pros & Cons
  • 40% recycled rubber outsole
  • 4mm lugs
  • XtraFoam™ midfoot cushioning
  • HydroSeal waterproof upper membrane
  • Great traction
  • Versatile
  • Very comfortable
  • OrthoLite footbed
  • Protective No-sew TPU toe cap
  • Amazing design
  • CRADLE heel stabilization technology
  • Durable
  • Breathable
  • Good price point
  • Cons
    • Some users have said that the laces are too long and too thin
    • Key Features
      One look at the decoupled outsole design of The North Face Mountain Sneaker is enough to realize you’re looking at a heavy-duty, rugged outsole that is intriguing and stylish at the same time. The flex grooves are strategically placed to promote natural foot flexibility and movements, and these grooves enable you to get an amazing feel of the surface without suffering the stress of the shock impact while hiking. The arrow-like, multidimensional, 4mm lugs are made with sharp edges in order to provide amazing traction on a variety of terrains. For those who try to be environmentally conscious, you’ll be happy to know that around 40% of the outsole is made out of recycled rubber, so you’ll essentially be saving the nature one shoe at a time.
      The midsole of The North Face Mountain Sneaker is made out of two types of EVA foam. The first one, on the perimeter of the shoe’s midsole, is a firmer-density resilient foam that is meant to increase the durability of the outsole as well as protect the other, middle part of the foamy midsole. The second EVA foam is actually the XtraFoam™ midsole system that provides great underfoot comfort, cushioning and stability. The XtraFoam™ also has some serious shock-absorbing properties. Top that off with the OrthoLite footbed, and you get immense comfort, even on extremely long hikes. In the rearfoot, you’ll find the CRADLE technology implemented in order to stabilize the heel and keep it in place, while also protecting the upper from scratches and potential tears.
      The stretchy, yet structured, the sock-like mesh is the main material used in the upper construction. This monosock construction allows you to take the shoe off and put it on in an instant, and the no-sew TPU toe cap provides the upper with sturdy protection and durability. The front part of the upper features a breathable mesh material that provides sufficient airflow and regulates the temperature of your feet. This hiking shoe also dons a HydroSeal waterproof membrane that will keep your feet dry in the rain and on various terrains. Another great part of the upper construction is the integrated tongue that is sewn-in, which prevents it from slipping, twisting and creating blisters. The only drawback of the entire upper is the lacing system, or rather, the laces themselves – they are far too long and too thin to provide a completely firm grip on the top side of your foot, although the synthetic suede overlay in the midfoot area adds greatly to the overall security of the foot. The sock liner is made out of the plant cellulose fiber foam and the upper also features a crepe mudguard as well as heel protection.
      A half-pair of this great-looking hiking shoe weighs in at about 298g or 10.5oz, which not only puts this shoe into the lightweight hiking category but makes it even more versatile when paired with the immaculate design. This sneaker is lightweight enough to fulfill the needs of everyday wear, but it’s also rugged enough to tackle the trail without an issue. The secret to the light weight of this shoe is the use of synthetic materials in the upper, which have lowered the total weight of the shoe significantly.
      The vamp of the shoe offers the most breathability to the hiker through the mesh material that is reminiscent of armor. No matter the weather conditions (except if you’re in Hawaii in the summer), this mesh material is more than enough to keep your feet sweat-free and an optimal temperature throughout the hike.
      The North Face Mountain Sneaker is an extremely comfortable shoe, both when worn on hikes and during the entire workday as well. One customer even stated that he wears the shoe for 12 hours straight every day and he doesn’t experience any discomfort whatsoever. Several other users have said they didn’t feel any pain despite wearing the Mountain Sneaker for prolonged periods of time. The sock-like upper is soft, flexible and stretchy, so it hugs the foot without putting too much pressure on it. The men’s version of this hiking sneaker range from sizes 7-14 and the women’s versions are offered in sizes 5-11. The fit of the sneaker is true to size, so you don’t have to size up or size down when shopping online. As an added perk to an already comfy shoe is the long pull tab on the back, which allows you to really put your finger through the tab, for easy on/off of the sneaker.
      The North Face Mountain Sneaker can only be described as beautiful. Every detail and every line of the sneaker’s design has a purpose and makes sense, and the end result is simply stunning. The North Face has succeeded at creating a hiking shoe that can be worn on a lot of regular meetings, to the pub, or just around town. This is a low-top sneaker with a mid-top waterproof variation available, but in both cases, the design is sleek, modern and adaptable to a variety of styles and situations. The synthetic leather overlay greatly contributes to the contemporary and elegant look of this sneaker. As far as the colorways go, the sneaker is available in a variety of colors and combos: Four Leaf Clover, Zinc Grey, TNF Black/Vintage White, Graphite Grey, TNF Black/Smoked Pearl Grey, and Fir Green.
      With a construction as sturdy, rugged and high-quality as this, durability is something to be expected, and the Mountain Sneaker doesn’t disappoint. Starting from the rubber outsole, the two-foam midsole and the synthetic suede overlay of the upper, paired with the firm mesh material, this shoe will last you for a long time, without a doubt.
      The no-sew TPU cap covers a large portion of the vamp, meaning that your toes will be more than protected while hiking on a technical terrain. The double-foam midsole does take a short time to break-in, but the underfoot XtraFoam™ cushioning and shock-absorption that it offers, together with the OrthoLite footbed, are amazing. The sewn-in tongue is really effective at keeping the debris from entering the shoebox, and thanks to the HydroSeal waterproof membrane, your feet will stay dry even when the sneaker does come in contact with rain or water of any other kind.
      The combination of the firmer-density perimeter foam and the XtraFoam™ technology in the midfoot area of The North Face Mountain Sneaker gives this shoe some bounce, although it’s more focused on providing enough cushioning, seeing how this isn’t a running shoe, but rather a hiking one. However, if you were to run on the trail for a short while, the energy-return would be satisfactory, although not mind-blowing.
      This is a neutral hiking shoe that doesn’t have significant additional arch support and is aimed at people who have normal, medium-high to high arches. However, the snug fit of the upper, combined with the synthetic suede midfoot overlay and the rearfoot CRADLE technology provide enough support to the foot so it doesn’t slip, slide and twist in this hiking shoe. If you opt to put your own orthotic insoles in the shoe, you’ll pretty much end up with an amazing, supportive outdoor shoe.
      The North Face Mountain Sneaker is made for everyday walking, casual outdoor outings, as well as some heavy-duty hiking. Thanks to the build quality and the design, this shoe caters to the needs of professionals whose work demands them to stand for a long time, as well as passionate hikers who can’t wait to go on their next trail adventure. Regardless of their potential use as an everyday sneaker, the Mountain Sneaker is exactly what it says it is: a sneaker made for trails, hikes, mountains, as well as slightly uneven and rocky terrains.
      Given its durability, quality of build, comfort, and resilience, the value you get for the money you pay for this shoe is well worth the investment of around one C-note. Your calculations can be additionally lowered if you opt to only buy one pair of sneaker for multiple purposes: mainly the outdoor outings and the everyday walking shoe, in which case the price is absolutely worth the value you’re getting.
      The multi-directional, 4mm lugs with biting/braking edges provide excellent traction, especially when needed for quick descents and scrambles. This hiking sneaker has proven to give amazing traction on a variety of terrains, and the lugs and grooves of the outsole really add to the overall durability of The North Face Mountain Sneaker.
      The mesh fabric of the upper is very stretchy and adheres to the foot seamlessly, moving with the natural flex of the foot in hiking conditions. The fabric of the upper feels very stable, supportive and firm while being soft at the same time, which provides a unique feeling of comfort and flexibility all at once. Additionally, the flex grooves on the outsole add to the flex of this hiking shoe because they promote the natural gait cycle and swift toe-off.
      One of the main stability features of The North Face Mountain sneaker is the CRADLE technology in the midsole, that enables correct heel placement and stabilization, while also increasing the durability of the sneaker. The idea behind the CRADLE technology is fairly simple and involves the midsole cradling the heel to ensure that the heel is positioned in a way that won’t create pressure to the fatty tissues under the bursa. Also, the shoe platform on this sneaker is wide, which adds to the stability of the foot during the whole gait cycle.
      The North Face Mountain Sneaker isn’t a running shoe, so the importance of the drop isn’t as accentuated in this type of shoe, because the room for adjusting your stride is much greater when walking, instead of running. That being said, this hiking shoe has a standard heel to toe drop of about 10mm, give or take, meaning that it does favor heel strikers slightly, although midfoot strikers wouldn’t experience any issues when wearing this shoe either, due to the fact the walking and running involve different foot placement and body position.
      Key Features
      ● 40% recycled rubber outsole
      ● 4mm lugs for fantastic traction
      ● Firmer-density EVA foam midsole with XtraFoam™ midfoot cushioning
      ● OrthoLite footbed
      ● CRADLE technology on the heel
      ● No-sew TPU toe cap
      ● HydroSeal waterproof upper membrane
      ● Not a well thought-out lacing system
      ● Breathable
      ● Very comfortable
      ● Durable
      ● Hiking shoe
      ● Wider shoe platform
      ● Neutral shoe
      Bottom Line
      The Mountain Sneaker, as a part of The North Face collection, is a complete hit in our books. This is a quality hiking shoe made for outdoor enthusiasts that don’t want to be recognized by their footwear. The impressive and detail-oriented design of this hiking sneaker allows it to be worn throughout the day and the dual EVA foam midsole provides superb cushioning and comfort. This is a neutral hiking shoe with great design, comfort, durability, and a very reasonable price, and it will be a great choice to put in your regular outdoor rotation, and can even serve as an all-in-one travel shoe.
      Where to Buy
      Moosejaw Link
      See Deal
      By Lizzy Pavlovic
      Last updated:
      Where to buy
      Best offer on: Jul. 29. 2021

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