Verdict from 3 experts and 100+ user reviews

6 reasons to buy

  • Tons of Meindl Respond GTX reviews say that this low-cut hiker is super comfortable right out of the box.
  • It gets lots of praise for its top-notch construction.
  • All thanks to the mesh upper, many people mention that it's quite breathable despite being a Gore-Tex shoe.
  • The Respond GTX gets overwhelming five-star reviews for being very supportive. It's a footwear choice by many people with weak ankles and foot pain problems.
  • Several users love that it's a wide-fitting hiking shoe, which means more room for comfort.
  • A handful of avid hikers give this Meindl offering high ratings for its solid grip.

3 reasons not to buy

  • A few customers feel that the Meindl Respond GTX could use a little more padding.
  • Some people also wish this shoe comes in different color options.
  • A handful of wearers find its toe box to be slightly restrictive.

Bottom line

A multifunctional shoe that performs well on the trail as it is on urban streets, the Meindl Respond GTX anthracite has impressed hundreds of users for its "out-of-the-box" comfort, solid build, and amazing support. It features a waterproof membrane too, which offers plenty of protection against rain or water. More importantly, it's very supportive, which made avid hikers and outdoor junkies become even more in love with the Respond GTX.

It has a pretty stiff outsole that is designed to protect the foot against really hard surfaces. Wearing a padded insole can make walking on soft soil or grass much more comfortable.

Tip: see the best hiking shoes.

Good to know

  • The latest Meindl Respond shoes come with a Gore-Tex waterproof membrane that seals out rain or moisture. The mesh upper offers protection against the trail hazards while allowing some breathability.
  • For enhanced traction, it features the Contagrip sole made of durable rubber. It's somewhat stiff for support and stability on rough terrain.
  • This low-cut hiking shoe also comes with the Air Active Footbed that promotes moisture management, plush comfort, and underfoot support.

The Meindl Respond GTX men and women's shoes are low-cut hikers with a stretchy mesh upper that offers a snug yet comfortable fit. It has a roomy toebox which makes it suitable not only for people with wide feet but also for those who have common issues like plantar fasciitis and overpronation.

This shoe features a webbing lacing system with five eyelets for a secure fit. There are pull loops in the tongue and at the back of the collar for easy slip-on and off.

The Respond GTX has a rigid sole featuring a combination of oval-shaped and triangular lugs and narrow grooves. This unique tread pattern allows the shoe to bite into rough or uneven terrain. Meindl's Contragrip Trail outsole is made of high-quality rubber. It's a little stiffer than traditional rubber but it gives the shoe a good amount of stability on rocky trails and off-pavement surfaces.

Also, the somewhat stiff outsole makes the Respond GTX suitable for easy scrambles.

This trail runner comes with a thin yet highly supportive midsole that is made stronger and stiffer with Kevlar (heat-resistant and strong synthetic fiber) and carbon. For some nice underfoot cushioning, the Respond GTX comes with a removable insole called "Air-Active" which helps with moisture management. This special footbed features tiny pores that allow the feet to "breathe" and stay cool while helping reduce impact and absorb shock for improved comfort.

With a durable mesh upper, this shoe offers ample protection against dirt and mud. The synthetic overlays create a sturdy structure for the shoe while the tidy heel cup helps stabilize the foot by ensuring the alignment between the knee, ankle, and hips. This shoe also features a rubber toe cap that guards against sharp trail hazards or accidental impact.

Lining the shoe interior is the Gore-Tex membrane. It's a proven and tested waterproof fabric but can be a little too warm on hot days. Good thing, the mesh upper is very breathable and helps the foot stay cool and fresh. Completing the upper is a webbing lacing system that makes tightening or loosening the upper really easy. 

Meindl is known for manufacturing premium hiking shoes and boots. Another popular choice in their hiking shoe selection is the Lugano. See the key differences below:

Materials. While the Respond GTX features a mesh upper, the Lugano shoe features a Nubuck leather upper which has many desirable qualities, such as tear resistance, durability, and water-resistance. This makes the Lugano shoe more suitable for tough trail conditions. Pro hikers who are constantly on the trail will benefit more from leather shoes, though it can be a little too warm on hot days. Hiking shoes with mesh uppers are best for light hiking and for urban use.

Lining. The Lugano hiker is lined with fleece and leather which, although not as waterproof as the Goretex membrane, offers some protection against external moisture. The waxed nubuck upper also repels rain or water efficiently. When hiking in extremely wet conditions, the Respond GTX is a better choice.

Weight. The Respond GTX is much heavier than the Lugano hiker. Lightweight shoes are highly suitable for day hikes when not carrying a heavy load while heavier shoes are great for multi-day hikes or backpacking with a heavy load.


How Meindl Respond GTX ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 34% hiking shoes
All hiking shoes
Top 25% Meindl hiking shoes
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Top 34% day hiking hiking shoes
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The current trend of Meindl Respond GTX.
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Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto

Over the past 20 years, Paul has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He has summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races as well as 6 marathons. On average, he runs 30-50 miles a week in the foothills of Northern Colorado. His research is regularly cited in The New York Times, Washington Post, National Geographic, etc. On top of this, Paul is leading the running shoe lab where he cuts shoes apart and analyses every detail of the shoes that you might buy.