8.3 / 10
Value for Money 1.6
Over the past few years this shoe has become dominant model on the US long distance trails so Altra must be doing something right. My current pair of Altra Lone Peaks is now the fourth pair that I have owned and they continue to be one of my favourites. While these shoes are trail runners this review looks at their performance as a hiking shoe.
This current version of Altra Lone Peak, the Lone Peak 4.0, only came onto the Australian market in the last half of 2018 and I must admit that I was sceptical given that Altra seems to have shifted into an almost annual cycle of model releases. Does a shoe need to be updated so often?
Before I discuss the the specifics of this model what’s so special about the Lone Peak model in general? The Lone Peak is known for being a zero drop shoe which means that from your heal to your toes the foot bed is level unlike most shoes that that are higher at the heel. This zero drop feature make you lean back ever so slightly which is noticeable the first time you wear them.This Zero drop won’t suit everyone, in fact many people struggle to wear these because this feature. The main issue for many people is that zero drop shoes have no arch support.
The other main feature of the Lone Peaks is the the wide squarish toe box which suits those of us with a broad forefoot. Unlike many wide fitting shoes the Lone Peaks are narrow in the rear half of the shoe. So what’s changed with this the latest version of this shoe?
I found the changes that occurred with the previous model, the Lone Peak 3.5, pushed me up a size and as such I now wear a size 15US. The sizing on the Lone Peak 4.0 is no different and I’m still a size 15.
The first change that you notice is that these shoes are much brighter in colour. This is only a cosmetic change but for some people it may be a step too far. I must admit I like to make a statement on the trail so love the fairy colour of the shoes shown in this review.
The big changes with this model are more substantial. The toe box which was often seen as one of the weak areas of these shoes has now been beefed up. This was never an issue for me with previous models as I typically get around 1000km of use from each pair.
The next obvious change is the material that forms the shoe upper. While still a breathable shoe the weave of the mesh has now become so fine that it minimises dust entering the shoe through the mesh, has kept me reasonably dry in heavy rain but still breathes.
The final big change with this version and one that isn’t obvious is that the rubber compound in the sole has been beefed up so has the potential to be more durable.
Other smaller changes include upgraded drainage points in the toe box to allow the movement of water out of the water after walking through water.
I have now worn these shoes for around 400km through a variety of terrain and find that they grip well, wear well and maintain their stability and support throughout their life finally succumbing the wear on soles of the feet.
There are only two real negatives to this latest version of the Lone Peaks. The first has been that one common to all three versions of this shoe that I have worn is that they lack protection from rocks along the sides of forefoot. Not a major issue on many trails but not my first choice for rocky trails such as the Larapinta Trail which had rocks as your constant companion. The second negative is a descent range of shoes in the big sizing. My constant badgering has now meant that I can get my size 15’s as a standard purchase rather than having to go to the US like I did in the past. The sizing runs a bit small on these so if you are borderline go up a size particularly if are doing a long hike and your feet are likely to swell. If you buy online purchase from a store that has a good return policy.
I love these shoes and love the zero drop concept which may not be for everyone but if this style of shoe suits you then the Altra Lone Peak 4.0 may be the way to go. Just remember to ease into them if you slowly if you’re not used to the zero drop.
Altra Lone Peak 4.0 mens trail runner. Top and bottom view. the yellow gaiter hook is visible at the front of the shoe
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These shoes come with a ‘Gaiter Trap’ which is a fancy name for a velcro tab designed to suit the Altra Gaiters and will also work with the Dirty Girl Gaiters as well. The gaiters are only designs to keep ‘stuff’ out of your shoes which is a godsend in sandy or burr ridden environments
Altra Lone Peak 4 side view. The cushioning is good on these shoes
The latest version of the Lone Peak Altra have a fine breathable mesh that prevent dust entering but still allows the shoes the breathe
This review was done with product purchased from a retail store by the reviewer