7 Best Merrell Trail Running Shoes in 2022

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen on
7 Best Merrell Trail Running Shoes in 2022

Over the years, the Merrell trail running shoes have been very popular among off-road adventurers and trail runners in the world. In fact, its Moab model has been the most sold trail boot in the world and has evolved over several updated versions.

Trail enthusiasts love the Merrell brand for its solid quality materials that feel lighter and softer. Its reliability, performance-driven design, and stout build appeal to the most hardcore ultra trail runners and regular outdoorsy folks.   

If you’re out looking for a new pair of Merrell shoes for your next adventure, we can help you find that perfect fit. We’ve tested 30 pairs of trail running shoes from the Merrell brand, and selected our best picks for your browsing convenience.

How we test trail running shoes

For this fantastic list, we’ve rounded up the latest and previous offerings of Merrell trail running shoes. We’ve spent hours in the lab and the trails to test and review each one of them, and select the best for different categories. To give you some idea, our entire process involves the following:

  • Buying all the trail running shoes with our own money. This is to show everyone that we don’t have any loyalty to the brand. It also keeps us honest and unbiased in our reviews.
  • Cutting the shoes in the lab, reducing them into their essential parts. This makes us easier for us to measure 30+ different parameters such as cushioning, durability, and traction, among others.
  • Testing each model in the trails to see how it can handle technical terrains and other various conditions.
  • Gathering more information from shoe experts, professional trail runners, and regular outdoor enthusiasts.

To conclude the whole process, we calculate the final grade of each model using our CoreScore system, which assigns a rating from 0-to 100. The top-rated Merrell trail running shoes make it to our best picks.

Best Merrell trail running shoes overall

Merrell Moab Flight
Merrell Moab Flight

Corescore

87
Great!
4.5 / 5 from 513 users
89 / 100 from 4 experts

Pros

  • True to size
  • No break-in period
  • Comfortable ride
  • Light
  • Excellent breathability
  • Reasonably-priced

Cons

  • Middling performance
  • Not so durable
  • Poor grip

Verdict

The Merrell Moab Flight is the Toyota RAV4 of shoes. It looks decent, can handle moderate dirt trails, and is comfortable enough to wear in many applications. While it is not the fastest or the most aggressive off-road, it has enough features that warrant consideration if you are looking for an all-around good quality trail shoe.
See our full review and facts

Best Merrell neutral trail running shoes

Merrell Nova 2
Merrell Nova 2

Corescore

83
Good!
4.4 / 5 from 1,660 users
83 / 100 from 3 experts

Pros

  • Fits true to size
  • Grip is great in good conditions
  • A decent amount of cushioning
  • Excellent lockdown
  • Sturdy upper
  • Dependable Vibram outsole
  • Good laces

Cons

  • Too much ground feel for some
  • Heavier than most
  • Grip isn’t reliable in wet conditions

Verdict

The Merrell Nova 2 is a traditionally designed trail running shoe, with less flair than many modern alternatives, but versatility and grip enough to prove its position as one of the best trail running shoes for beginners.
See our full review and facts

Best Merrell trail cushioned running shoes

Merrell Rubato
Merrell Rubato

Corescore

86
Great!
4.2 / 5 from 402 users
98 / 100 from 2 experts

Pros

  • Soft and responsive cushioning
  • Bouncy 
  • Upper wraps the foot smoothly 
  • Soft underfoot
  • Roomy toe box
  • Secure fit for wide-footed 
  • Excellent outsole grip

Cons

  • Lacks stability
  • Too loose for narrow feet

Verdict

The Merell Rubato is a zero-drop, max-cushioned shoe that lets you run as fast or as slow as you please. The shoe is heavily focused on providing a bouncy and comfortable ride for high-mileage or quick-paced runs. The luxurious cushioning of the Rubato will make your feet happy on light, less demanding trail surfaces, but it is not suitable for those looking for extra support and stability.
See our full review and facts

Best Merrell trail wide running shoes

Merrell Agility Peak 4
Merrell Agility Peak 4

Corescore

84
Good!
4.3 / 5 from 151 users
80 / 100 from 11 experts

Pros

  • Ample protection
  • Delivers ground feel
  • Multisurface traction
  • Glove-like fit
  • Comfortable upper
  • Lightweight
  • Excellent lockdown

Cons

  • Not responsive
  • Lace bite
  • Heel slippage
  • Lacks ventilation
  • Difficult entry

Verdict

If you're a runner and you're unsure what lies ahead in the trails, this is where the Merrell Agility Peak 4 hits home. A letdown of this trail shoe is that it's not fast. So, for the nimble fell runners, you might want to pick something else. But if you want the same versatility with a softer ride, you might want to consider the Merrell Rubato.
See our full review and facts

Best Merrell trail long distance running shoes

Merrell Antora 2
Merrell Antora 2

Out of stock in all 56 shops

Merrell merrell trail running shoes  

Corescore

82
Good!
4.5 / 5 from 1,027 users
74 / 100 from 2 experts

Pros

  • Straight-out-the-box comfort
  • Grippy
  • Protective
  • Stable
  • Versatile use
  • Spacious toe box
  • Light

Cons

  • Stiff
  • Not for narrow feet

Verdict

As the women's counterpart of the Nova 2, the Merrell Antora 2 offers a sneaker-light comfort and confidence-boosting performance on both light and rugged trails. It has a durable grippy outsole for uphill and downhill runs, and an underfoot cushioning uniquely tailored for female athletes. With its protective and stable platform, this trail running shoe won't disappoint on long-distance and slow-paced runs.
See our full review and facts

Best value Merrell trail running shoes

Merrell Agility Synthesis 2
Merrell Agility Synthesis 2

Corescore

79
Good!
4.4 / 5 from 191 users
N/A

Pros

  • Irritation-free foot coverage
  • Soft and bouncy
  • Works well on asphalt and wet surfaces
  • Enough cushioning level
  • Roomy toe box
  • Offers underfoot protection
  • Flexible sole
  • Great for casual walks
  • Great for running errands
  • Great for gym workouts

Cons

  • Lacks durability
  • Laces come off untied

Verdict

The Agility Synthesis 2 from Merrell offers the things you need to conquer the trail in a lightweight package. It is flexible and has the agility you need to perform, no matter the pace and the distance. More suitable for light trail surfaces and quick-paced training, the Agility Synthesis 2 is a great option for those who prefer a soft underfoot cushioning and close-to-ground sensation.
See our full review and facts

What are the cheapest Merrell trail running shoes in 2022?

  1. Merrell Agility Synthesis 2 - from $58
  2. Merrell Rubato - from $65
  3. Merrell Nova 2 - from $70
  4. Merrell Moab Flight - from $71
  5. Merrell Agility Peak 4 - from $100
  6. Merrell Trail Glove 6 - from $100

See all Merrell trail running shoes sorted by lowest price

Author
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.