Verdict from 7 experts and 100+ user reviews

7 reasons to buy

  • Shoe pundits were all praises for the MQM Flex GTX’s astounding level of comfort.
  • This Merrell hiking shoe stunned professional gear critics with its amazingly grippy outsole.
  • Some patrons applauded the footgear’s super-effective Gore-Tex waterproofing.
  • Its lightweight construction wowed several users.
  • According to a handful of reviewers, the Merrell MQM Flex GTX runs true to size.
  • One blogger found this shoe remarkably flexible.
  • The hiker’s excellent heel support greatly impressed a field tester.

1 reason not to buy

  • An expert didn’t feel very connected to the ground on the MQM Flex GTX’s midsole.

Bottom line

It is clear that comfort is a big factor to consider in shoe selection. Thankfully, the MQM Flex GTX from Merrell has this particular quality, so wearers need not worry on that front. That said, the gear begs to be appreciated for reasons beyond comfort—yes, the footwear also has phenomenal surface traction and a kind of lightness that can leave many people in awe. It is a bit unfortunate, however, that ground feel is not the shoe’s strongest suit. Nevertheless, the Merrell MQM Flex GTX embodies excellence.

Tip: see the best hiking shoes.

Good to know

  • Designed with athletic mobility in mind, the Merrell MQM Flex GTX is powered by technologies that enable day hikers to tackle trails with agility. Its breathable upper, which is made of mesh and TPU, is imbued with the Gore-Tex Invisible Fit technology for waterproofing minus the bulk.
  • For improved flexibility and maneuverability, the lightweight shoe comes with the FLEXconnect. This Merrell-exclusive tech involves the footwear’s soles and the Hyperlock heel counter.

The MQM Flex GTX is a low-cut day hiking shoe for both men and women. It has a fit intended for people with regular-width feet. Its sizing options are comprised of half and whole sizes. The shoe’s classic lockdown system provides a customized fit, while its heel pull tab offers on and off assistance.

Merrell’s MQM Flex GTX is engineered with the M-Select Grip outsole for traction. It promises wearers enough grip on most types of surfaces with its 3.5-mm, debris-shedding lugs. It is reinforced with the TrailProtect pad—another Merrell-exclusive technology that adds a layer of terrain protection for the user.

This heavy-duty component has a narrow extension covering the tip of the forefoot. This covered part serves as the shoe’s toe bumper.

The MQM Flex GTX is capable of stabilizing the foot over uneven terrain with ample cushioning thanks to its FLEXconnect dual-directional flex-groove EVA midsole. Its forefoot has vertical grooves that allow the midsole to flex with better fluidity, giving hikers a sense of connectedness to the ground. Its shock-absorbing capability is doubled down by the Merrell Air Cushion technology embedded in its heel zone. The cushioning it provides is further bolstered by the shoe’s removable EVA footbed.

Protecting the foot from the elements is the footwear’s below-the-ankle upper. Both its exterior and inner liner are made of breathable mesh fabric, while its scuff-resistant overlays and heel-supportive Hyperlock heel counter are made of TPU. Its main bootie is crafted with a Gore-Tex membrane, granting the shoe adequate water protection. It has a bellows tongue that keeps debris out.


How Merrell MQM Flex GTX ranks compared to all other shoes
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The current trend of Merrell MQM Flex 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.