When it comes to trail shoes, there are far fewer options for runners who need a motion-control shoe. Motion-control trail-running shoes provide added stability along the medial side of the foot to help moderate to severe overpronation. In the past year, one motion-control trail shoe has received more positive feedback from experts than any other: The North Face Double-Track (*Est. $110) . It features a cradle support in the heel and adds a medial post to provide cushioning and support for severe overpronators. Despite these stability features, reviewers say the shoe still feels nimble and lightweight enough for long, rough runs. Like its sister model The North Face Single-Track (*Est. $100) , experts say the Double-Track also transitions well from trails to roads. This makes it an ideal shoe for those who often run on mixed terrain.
The North Face Double-Track was first introduced in January 2011; at the time of this report, there are few reviews of the model. Still, the shoe has earned attention from top running publications and was included in the prestigious Runner's World Spring 2011 Trail Shoe Guide. Outside magazine designated the shoe as a top buy for 2011, and it was praised by Women's Adventure Magazine and Men's Health. Unfortunately, these reviews are light on details, but their highly positive feedback makes this shoe a front runner in the motion-control trail-running category.
1. Runner's World
Runner's World's annual shoe guides are considered the gold standard in running shoe reviews, and Warren Greene and Martyn Shorten are seen as two of the most well-versed experts in the market. Nine models are wear-tested and evaluated in the 2011 trail shoe installment. The North Face Double-Track is selected as a good option for runners who need extra pronation control and is considered a good road/trail crossover shoe.
Review: Ground Breakers, Warren Greene and Martyn Shorten, April 2011
In Outside magazine's 2011 Summer Buyer's Guide, editors choose 12 models as top picks for trail running shoes. Each selection is accompanied by a short editor review, and The North Face Double-Track is praised for the subtle medial post that adds stability. They also note that, like The North Face Single-Track, this is a nice shoe for both road and trail work.
Review: Summer Buyer's Guide, Editors of Outside, May 2011
3. Women's Adventure magazine
Women's Adventure Magazine provides an insightful buying guide and reviews five trail-running shoes. The North Face Double-Track is among the selections and earns praise for a support system that helps correct overpronation. Plus, reviewers say that while it's lighter in weight, the shoe can handle "rough and rocky" terrain. Unfortunately, it's unclear how the shoes were tested and how many shoes were evaluated overall.
Review: Spring Gear: Trail Shoes, Editors of Women's Adventure Magazine, March 4, 2011
4. Believe in the Run
This blog provides a detailed, balanced review of The North Face Double-Track, courtesy of a blogger who says he has severe pronation issues. The reviewer praises the shoe for its ability to stabilize those who need major motion control along the midfoot. Still, he says, the shoe's design lends a nice flexibility in the forefoot -- a feature lacking in many motion-control trail-running shoes.
Review: Guest Post: Shoe Review The North Face Double-Track, Bloggers of Believe in the Run, April 12, 2011
5. Men's Health
This men's magazine provides a relatively detailed review of The North Face Double-Track. The shoe receives a decent rating of 7.5 on a 10-point scale, and is ranked on criteria including fit/comfort, cushioning, stability and design. The shoe gets stellar marks for stability. Testers say the shoe is surprisingly nimble and does a superior job of gently correcting overpronation.
Review: Running Shoe Review: The North Face Double-Track, Editors of Men's Health, Not Dated