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Verdict from 10 experts and 19 user reviews

Hoka Zinal: a low-stack trail speedster

Hoka takes a twist with the release of the Zinal trail shoe. Going totally against what the brand is all about, it comes up with a low-stack, light, and nimble speed shoe for the trails.

What are the benefits?

Hoka Zinal is right for you if you are looking for the following features in your next trail shoe:

  • light (Zinal is around 2 oz / 57 g lighter than trail shoes on average)
  • fast and responsive for shorter distances (that’s less than 50K on the trail running scale)
  • can handle challenging terrain (singletrack, mountain trails, rocks, gravel, climbs, descents, water crosses, etc.)
  • has a balance of protection and ground feel (more of the latter)
  • made with the use of recycled materials

For a more cushioned and protective ride, consider Hoka Torrent. And if you’re after a max-cushioned monster for going an ultra, see Hoka Speedgoat.

Fun fact

The shoe received its name from Sierre Zinal, a 31K race, which takes place in some of the most picturesque areas of the Swiss Alps.

It involves speeding up and down the challenging mountain terrain, which is exactly what the Hoka Zinal is meant for.


The current trend of Hoka Zinal.
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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.