|Rating:||8.5 / 10|
|Comfort||1.9 / 2|
|Durability||1.5 / 2|
|Support Stability||1.7 / 2|
|Weight||1.8 / 2|
|Value for Money||1.6 / 2|
This is the second version of the Altra Timps that I have tested over the past few years and for me the previous model just didn’t cut it compared to the Altra Lone Peak and Altra Olympus ranges. Based on that I didn’t come into this review with a totally open mind. Having said that the Altra Timp 3.0’s surprised me.
As usual I initially struggled to source a size 15 pair and given that males with size 12US and above feet only account for around 2% of the population that’s not a surprise. The sizing in regard to the length is pretty true to form and that’s a bonus. Altra’s philosophy is to provide footwear that mirrors your own feet and this shoe definitely does that. The width at least from my perspective is perfect; narrowish at the rear and mid foot and opening out wider at the front to allow your toes room to spread.
I have been using the Altra Olympus 3.5’s and Altra Olympus 4.0’s for much of the past year and as a shoe the Olympus range is broader across the length of the shoe and if you have a wide foot from front to back then the Olympus is a probably a better option. If you are like me and your feet have an average rear and mid section and broad forefoot then the Timps are a great choice. In addition, these shoes are a zero drop which may not suit everyone but there are those of us who love this option as it pushes you more upright in your stance.
The depth of cushioning (stack hike) on the Altra Timps is 29 mm and sits in the middle of the Altra trail running range with the Lone Peaks being 25 mm and the Olympus’s 33 mm. This 29 mm of rubber sits in that ‘Golidlocks range’ providing the right amount of cushioning and the right amount of tactile feel at the same time. The soles of the Timps have also been upgraded like the rest of the range to provide grip and traction in a wide range of conditions.
These shoes maintain the gaiter hook and gaiter trap that works really well with the lycra style of gaiter including the Altra Trail Gaiters and Dirty Girl options. While this ‘gaiter trap’ system works well with the lycra gaiters, it’s not a great choice for heavy styles of gaiters.
Colour wise the Timps are relatively tame with the main colour in Australia being a darker blue although if purchasing from overseas you may pick up other options.
I need to say upfront that from my perspective this is without a doubt the most comfortable trail running shoe I have ever worn, hands down. Based purely on the comfort of these shoes you would expect them to be my hiking shoe of choice but this is where the Timp 3.0 gets contradictory.
The one and only negative of this shoe is durability. I have worn these shoes for around 500 km across natural trails and hard surfaces such as concrete and bitumen, and looking at them you wouldn’t know it. The upper is in very good condition, the sole of the shoes hardly has any wear and tear and they are still as grippy as they were the day they came out of the box. Where this model has let me down is that the rubber compound in the sole of the shoe has lost all cushioning which now means my feet feel tired and hard done-by. While a lighter weight hiker may get a longer life out of these shoes, from my perspective at best I’ll get about 700 km. For many hikers that may well be around a year or so but for me I’ll do that in around 3-4 months. As I’m writing this review I’m within two months of starting a thru hike on the 1200 km Heysen Trail and this shoe isn’t in the mix as I would need two pairs to get through the hike.
The Altra Timp 3.0’s are probably the most polarising shoe I have ever worn. The supreme comfort of these shoes are amazing but the relatively short life is dissapointing. I suppose that’s the trade off you make when choosing footwear. While I would be very happy to wear these shoes for most of my hikes they aren’t a contender for my long distance hikes where I need a shoe that will last me the whole trip. If you are looking at these shoes you need to consider if the supreme comfort is worth the trade off on the durability. Comfort wise the answer is yes but at AUD$259 how much is comfort worth?
Yes, definitely! But not for long distance thru hikes
You can purchase the Altra Time 3.0 Men’s Trail Running Shoe at Wildfire Sports
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Altra Timp 3.0 Men’s Shoe
Altra Timp 3.0 side view – inside view-top and outside view-bottom
Altra Timp 3.o front and rear view. The shoe on the left shows the velcro gaiter trap for use with lycra gaiters
Gaiter hook at front of shoe Altra Time 3.0
Close up of sole at the heal with the sole split. This split is designed to channel water and keep you stable as you walk
Altra Timp 3.0 sole view with the iconic Altra foot pattern
Close up of sole lugs
This review was done with product purchased from a retail store by Australian Hiker