Patagonia EVERlong Trail Shoe Review and Giveaway

Patagonia EVERlongIntro from Pete: This is a guest review by Laurie Greenberg, an ultrarunner from Warren, VT. I met Laurie this past summer when we coached together at the Craftsbury Running Camps, and was amazed by her ability to eat up miles. She is a certified personal trainer,  mother of three, and is one of the top female ultrarunners in New England. Laurie is a past winner of the Vermont 50K, Stone Cat Trail Marathon, Jay Peak 25K, Pittsfield 50K, Covered Bridges Half Marathon, and Crater Lake Half Marathon. Most recently she finished third female at the 2013 Pisgah 50K. I’m honored to have someone with Laurie’s running resume writing here on Runblogger! Here Laurie reviews the Patagonia EVERlong trail runner.

Patagonia was founded over 30 years ago to serve athletes and outdoor enthusiasts who use their own lungs, limbs and muscle for power, rather than motor or machine. Their mission statement is simple; “Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”

The company is well-known in the outdoor world for making products that range from gear that will get you through the most extreme conditions, to a comfortable sweater that you can relax in with a cup of yerba mate or a tasty microbrew (Editor’s note: knowing Laurie, preferably one from Hillstead Farms!). For the past few years, Patagonia has been striving to apply the same top quality and functional design of their apparel to the world of trail running shoes. I recently received a pair of their newest model, the Patagonia EVERlong, and have been running in it for the past month. (Disclosure: these were review samples provided free of charge by Patagonia)

Patagonia’s goal in designing the EVERlong was to create a shoe that lets the runner feel the intimate details of the ground and gain a sense of freedom on the trails. They wanted to produce a shoe that will take you from a weekend trail run to a 100-mile race. To help achieve this goal, Patagonia worked with top ultra marathoner Jeff Browning to design the EVERlong. Browning states that there were four main design goals for the EVERlong: dialing in midsole width/feel, balancing traction vs. weight in the design of the outsole, incorporating a soft heel lock, and an upper/midfoot wrap that would prevent the shoe from feeling sloppy on downhills. Being familiar with Patagonia’s fantastic apparel line, I was excited to put this new trail runner to the test on the rugged trails surrounding my Vermont home!

Patagonia EVERlong medial

I received the EVERlong four days prior to racing a 50k and, unfortunately, I didn’t feel I had enough break-in miles with them to use them in the race. However, my initial reaction was that they were extremely comfortable with ample toe room without making your foot feel like it was floating around. The design is meant for all function and little fluff; the EVERlong looked very basic but practical. These were made for a runner. Period.

After having spent a month running in the EVERlong, with runs ranging from five to 14 miles on a variety of trails and dirt roads, I have a better appreciation of what the shoe has to offer.

Patagonia Everlong Top

The EVERlong is a low profile shoe (23/19m mm; 4mm drop) that offers a cushy landing. It is definitely not a hard soled trail runner. If you are the type of runner that tends to like the feel of a softer shoe and a little extra cushion on the roads, the EVERlong will deliver this for you – it felt great on dirt roads and hard packed trails, and the cushion enabled me to transition from road to trail easily. You will feel the rocks and roots on more technical trails, but this was not a major problem for me. 

The EVERlong is lightweight and unencumbering on my feet. Weighing in at 6.1 ounces for women, I appreciated not having to carry extra weight through my longer runs. Patagonia has done nice job keeping the shoe lightweight while still providing the cushion required to handle the uneven terrain that trails can dish out.

The EVERlong shoe was designed with overlays and a midfoot wrap that are meant to hold your foot securely on the platform – they accomplish what they were designed to do. I felt that my foot was securely locked down, but the internal mid-foot wrap did not feel overbearing nor like it held my foot in place in a restrictive way. It gave my foot just the right support it needed as I took sharp turns and hairpins on the trail. I have taken this shoe on some varied trail conditions from dirt and rooted trails to grassy meadows and felt my mid-foot was well supported without feeling trapped.

Patagonia EVERlong heelThe EVERlong does not have a hard heel counter and again relies on a system of overlays and some padding to support the heel. This is the one area where I felt the shoe needs more support. During my first few runs it seemed to have the support my heel needed on the trails but it appears to have broken down fast. This gives me the feeling that my foot is starting to pronate more than it normally does (Editor’s Note – Laurie is a fairly extreme pronator, though it has not caused her issues from an injury standpoint).

Patagonia designed the outsole in a pod style to shave weight yet retain the traction needed on technical trails. It’s not a luggy trail shoe, but while running it responded well to damp, dew covered rocks and roots. We’ve been blessed with an amazingly warm and brilliantly dry Fall in Vermont so I have yet to try the shoe in the mud or on wet trails.Patagonia Everlong sole

Conclusion

If you are looking for a lightweight, minimal drop, cushioned trail shoe the EVERlong could be the shoe for you. The EVERlong is a fairly minimal shoe, so if you are not accustomed to wearing this style of trail shoe you might not find the support you need. If you are a heavier runner who wears down shoes quickly the overlay design might break down rapidly on you and not provide you with the support you are looking for in a trail shoe. Although I liked the cushioning, the lightweight feel of the shoe, the outsole and the forefoot room, I probably will not use the EVERlong for trail runs longer than 20k because I do not have the support I feel is needed in the heel.

The Patagonia EVERlong will be available for purchase on November 14 from Patagonia.com.

For additional takes on the Patagonia EVERlong, view reviews on Biker Nate and Believe in the Run.


Patagonia EVERlong Giveaway

Patagonia has agreed to provide a pair of EVERlong shoes to one reader of this review. To enter the giveaway, complete one or more of the tasks listed in the Rafflecopter widget below. You must reside either in Canada or the United States to participate(shipping is limited to North America), and a winner will be chosen at random on October 29.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**Featured Running Gear Sale: Shoebuy - 20% Off Skechers Performance shoes and 20% OFF all technical running shoes with code 20APRIL (through 5/1)

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About Peter Larson

This post was authored by Peter Larson. Pete is a recovering academic who currently works as an exercise physiologist, running coach, and writer. He's also a father of three and a fanatical runner with a bit of a shoe obsession. In addition to writing and editing this site, he is co-author of the book Tread Lightly, and writes a personal blog called The Blogologist. Follow Pete on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and via email.

Comments

  1. I’d be very interested to hear more from Laurie on the pronation (assume you mean overpronation) as I have that problem and almost never see it addressed in a trail shoe review. (btw I love Patagonia products too!) I run in Brooks Adrenalines (used to use Ariels till they screwed them up) with custom orthotics and cannot find trail shoes that are 1) wide enough for my women’s 10EE feet (e.g., the Adrenaline trail doesn’t come in wide – let alone double – in either womens or mens) and 2) have any pronation control – I can put my orthotics in but alone they’re usually not enough. Would love recs on such shoes and to see that shoe feature mentioned in more reviews in the future. There are lots of us in stability/MC road shoes (and who have wide feet) and I don’t see the trail shoe mfrs serving us well – and they could make some good money by doing so! Thanks!

    • Don Byers says:

      Have you considered the New Balance 1210? It is available up to 4E widths. A women’s 10EE would be the equivalent of a men’s 8.5EE. The 1210 offers light stability.

      Most trail shoes don’t have heavy stability/motion control features because that could cause problems when the foot needs to roll in certain conditions and the shoe would inhibit that, possibily causing issues in other areas. Some “trail” shoes that have stability features are really just road shoes with a different outsole.

  2. Aaron Grenz says:

    I’ve always been a fan of Patagonia apparel and casual footwear. I’ve tried several of their trail shoes, and never found any pairs that worked for me. These shoes look better than the past, so here’s these are as good as they appear thus far.

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