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Topo Athletic Terraventure 2 - Women's Review

A wide and low profile trail option that rivals the Altra brand shoes.
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Price:  $120 List | $119.95 at Amazon
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Durable, bomber Vibram outsole, responsive cushioning, wide toe box, dries quickly, drains water well
Cons:  Poor and unspecific fit, unstable
Manufacturer:   Topo Athletic
By Amber King ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 2, 2019
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63
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#18 of 18
  • Foot protection - 20% 6
  • Sensitivity - 20% 6
  • Traction - 15% 8
  • Stability - 15% 6
  • Comfort and Fit - 15% 5
  • Weight - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The Topo Terraventure 2 is a low profile, wide shoe that offers a robust outsole and exceptional durability. It has a toe box that allows your toes to splay out completely; Altra shoes are known for this design, but Topo also seems to have adopted it, making some changes. The Altra Lone Peak 4 is its main competitor, offering a wider toe box and more responsive and springy cushioning. Unfortunately, while we love this shoe, it isn't very durable and has a zero-drop design, which not every runner is fond of. The Terraventure 2 fills this niche, offering a more durable construction, less springy construction, and a neutral 3 mm drop fit, which provides additional support and protection for heel strikers. We'd love the Terraventure 2 more if the fit wasn't so sloppy; however, it's an excellent option for all distances and most trails that aren't too technical.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award  
Price $119.95 at Amazon
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Durable, bomber Vibram outsole, responsive cushioning, wide toe box, dries quickly, drains water wellSuperb traction, amazing durability, wide-toe box, zero-drop design, great sensitivity, highly protective outsole and upperComfortable, versatile fit, great responsiveness, fantastic value, durableExcellent traction, great balance of foot protection and sensitivity, specific fit, durable outsoleGreat price, flexible, comfortable, responsive, one-pull lacing system
Cons Poor and unspecific fit, unstableLaces come undone easily, lacks a women’s specific fit, upper takes time to break-inDoesn't shed mud well, some midsole compaction over timeHigher heel is less stable, lugs wear down on pavementNo aggressive outsole, lug durability is questionable
Bottom Line A wide and low profile trail option that rivals the Altra brand shoes.This Editors' Choice winner crushes every metric with its innovative and super durable design.A superior performer that offers exceptional value on all types of terrain.An aggressive trail shoe that is built for the steepest and most technical trails out there.A well fitted and comfortable shoe that is best for non-technical surfaces.
Rating Categories Terraventure 2 Inov-8 TerraUltra G260 Peregrine ISO Speedcross 5 Sense Ride 2
Foot Protection (20%)
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
7
Sensitivity (20%)
10
0
6
10
0
10
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
Traction (15%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
10
10
0
6
Stability (15%)
10
0
6
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
8
Comfort And Fit (15%)
10
0
5
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
Weight (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
5
10
0
9
Specs Terraventure 2 Inov-8 TerraUltra... Peregrine ISO Speedcross 5 Sense Ride 2
Measured Weight 9.6 oz 8.75 oz 9.8 oz 10.7 oz 8.6 oz
Ideal Terrain All terrain All terrain All terrain Soft surfaces, technical terrain Non-technical trails, cross-over terrain
Width Options Regular Regular Regular and Wide Regular and Wide Regular
Heel-to-Toe Drop 3 mm 0 mm 4 mm 10 mm 8 mm
Stack Height from toe to heel (mm) 25/22 9/9 18.5/22.5 10/20 27/19
Upper Mesh/PU Kevlar Mesh IsoFit Nylon mesh, sythetic overlays 3D Mesh
Midsole Dual-density EVA EXTERFLOW PWRFOAM Injected EVA Vibe
Outsole Vibram Rubber Graphene Grip PWRTRAC Contragrip ContraGrip
Rock Plate? Yes Yes None Yes None, profeel film
Sizes Available 6 - 11 4 - 15 5 - 12 5 - 12 7 - 10

Our Analysis and Test Results

A wide and low profile trail runner built to take on the miles, the Topo Terraventure 2 competes with Altra but offers a more durable construction and outsole. While it is protective and supportive, the fit is non-specific, causing instability with super technical terrain. While some people out there love this shoe, it certainly is not our favorite. However, if you want a wider shoe, and Altra models don't work for you, this brand is worth considering.

Performance Comparison


The Topo Terraventure 2 is a trail shoe to consider if you're looking for a little extra cushioning in the heel and a wide toe box that rivals the Altra brand shoes. The cushioning is responsive while the durability is quite bomber. The fit isn't the most comfortable  but some ultra-runners swear by it.
The Topo Terraventure 2 is a trail shoe to consider if you're looking for a little extra cushioning in the heel and a wide toe box that rivals the Altra brand shoes. The cushioning is responsive while the durability is quite bomber. The fit isn't the most comfortable, but some ultra-runners swear by it.

Foot Protection


The Terraventure offers decent foot protection and earns an average score in this category. It is loaded with a dual-density EVA foam that is not as squishy or as bouncy as the Altra Lone Peak 4.0. It is also outfitted with a thin rock plate to disperse the impact from direct hits with sharp rocks on the trail.

This show offers underfoot cushioning with a 3mm drop and a little more cushioning in the heel of the midsole.
This show offers underfoot cushioning with a 3mm drop and a little more cushioning in the heel of the midsole.

The toe cap is relatively squishy, providing protection from low impact stubs, but not high impact hits. The overlay mesh is breathable, but it, along with the nonspecific fit, allows some pesky trail debris inside the shoe. Overall, it offers a decent amount of foot protection that will take you on most trails and is commonly used for both long and short distances.

The forefoot offers a great amount of stack cushioning in addition to a rock plate that keeps your feet protected from underfoot hazards.
The forefoot offers a great amount of stack cushioning in addition to a rock plate that keeps your feet protected from underfoot hazards.

Sensitivity


Given that the underfoot cushioning is ample and harder, it's a little more difficult to feel the trail under your foot. While it does offer sensitivity and the ability to feel roots and rocks underfoot, the Vibram outsole (that offers additional protection) prevents you from having a truly intimate experience. That said, it's an adequate trail runner and performs on most trails where sensitivity is required.

This offers a good amount of sensitivity that'll keep you healthy while treading over the trail.
This offers a good amount of sensitivity that'll keep you healthy while treading over the trail.

Traction


We love the durability and construction of this outsole. The lugs are relatively deep and oriented, which helps provide traction while tackling steep slopes. The Vibram rubber is super sticky and offers great "grabby" support. While it performs well on hard-packed surfaces, it does struggle on wet or slippery surfaces, not shedding mud well.

This Vibram outsole offers a super sticky rubber composite that does well on rocks that are both wet and dry. This outsole is far more durable than the Altra brands rubber  shedding mud  and performing well over most conditions.
This Vibram outsole offers a super sticky rubber composite that does well on rocks that are both wet and dry. This outsole is far more durable than the Altra brands rubber, shedding mud, and performing well over most conditions.

In comparison to the Altra Lone Peak 4, the Terraventure has a more durable outsole. It's an excellent option for cross-over terrain, dirt roads, hard-packed single track, and rocky trails. We wouldn't wear it in deep snow or muddy conditions where you'll experience sticky mud (like clay). When hiking up steeps, we noticed that this shoe grabs the terrain beautifully; however, due to a lack of lugs (which increase the surface area on the downhill), we found ourselves slipping down slopes with kitty litter over dry dirt. Overall, it provides a good level of traction, but does have its limitations.

The lugs are solid and do great while climbing uphill  however  they have a harder time with super dry and slippery surfaces when going downhill.
The lugs are solid and do great while climbing uphill, however, they have a harder time with super dry and slippery surfaces when going downhill.

Stability


While this shoe does offer a wider fit (but not as wide as the Altra options) in the forefoot to promote toe splay, the cushioning is harder, which makes you feel like you're sitting higher in the shoe. The collar doesn't completely wrap around the back of the foot, causing some slip and instability on rocky, unstable trails. The lacing system doesn't promote a super precise fit, which can cause some feet to move around quite a bit; this leads to instability inherently. While it does perform decently on rocky surfaces, we'd trade this in for a more stable competitor like the Scarpa Spin Ultra, our Top Pick for Stability.

A more rigid shoe  it offers a good balance of width to height  offering a stable ride on the trail.
A more rigid shoe, it offers a good balance of width to height, offering a stable ride on the trail.

Comfort & Fit


The Terraventure does not particularly shine in this metric. It has everything it needs to be a truly competitive trail runner, but the fit is not precise; in turn, the comfort level is lower. Starting with the overall fit, the toe box is a little wider but not as wide as the Altra Lone Peak 4 - its main competitor in this review. The upper is flexible, which allows you to splay your toes, but some of our testers mentioned that they got hot spots from areas of friction, as the material is not very smooth.

A great option for those who prefer a wider profile.
A great option for those who prefer a wider profile.

There is no real constriction around the arch, and this continues to the heel. The shoe feels like wearing boats on your feet, with a lot of movement. Normally this would be fixed by a fantastic lacing system, but the system utilized in this design is limited. While pulling the laces as tight as we could, we simply could not tighten it enough, even with different lacing patterns. This system would be heaps better if it took a lesson from the Saucony Peregrine ISO, which offers a wing-tipped design that completely wraps and encompasses the foot.

The stability harness does wrap the foot  but due to the more rigid upper  it doesn't wrap the foot as effectively as other shoes with a more specific fit.
The stability harness does wrap the foot, but due to the more rigid upper, it doesn't wrap the foot as effectively as other shoes with a more specific fit.

Since this lacing system doesn't pull the whole toe together efficiently, you're left with a fit that feels imprecise and bulky. While this is our experience (and the feedback from over ten different testers), there are people out there that completely favor the fit and comfort elements of the Topo Terraventure 2 over the Altra Lone Peak 4, potentially due to the more responsive cushioning and less precise fit that it offers.

Weight


While the fit does feel bulky, it's not very heavy. Weighing an average 9.6 oz, it offers the affinity to be worn all day for longer trails because of its lightweight design.

A "normal" weight that fits into the lightweight category. This shoes a size nine shoe.
A "normal" weight that fits into the lightweight category. This shoes a size nine shoe.

Best Applications


If you're not a fan of the Altra's poor durability or the fit simply isn't right, you should try the Topo Terraventure 2. It's a great option for longer days, offers a wider fit, and features minimal cushioning in the heel. If the fit works for you and you prefer a harder foam underfoot (that is responsive and protective), this is a great option. It dries quickly and drains effectively, making it a decent option for water crossings (though it is not water-resistant).

Jogging it out along the river on another training run in Colorado. A great place for this trail runner that offers a wide fit for ample toe splay and a bomber outsole.
Jogging it out along the river on another training run in Colorado. A great place for this trail runner that offers a wide fit for ample toe splay and a bomber outsole.

Value


If you love this brand, $120 is a fair price. It fulfills the niche of fitting those with a wider toe box best and a low profile design (3 mm drop). While it certainly is not our favorite in the fleet, it sure seems to be durable after our 60+ mile testing period. There are no real signs of wear and tear, and the outsole is bomber.

Conclusion


This trail runner is built for those who appreciate a wider toe box and low-profile design (3 mm drop). It mainly competes with the Altra Lone Peak 4, offering a firmer level of cushioning underfoot and a bomber outsole that'll tackle more surfaces. While these are all pluses, we are not psyched on its sloppy fit, which makes it less stable on super technical terrain.

Jack enjoys a chin tickle while taking a quick break on the summit of our local training hill in Ridgway  Colorado.
Jack enjoys a chin tickle while taking a quick break on the summit of our local training hill in Ridgway, Colorado.


Amber King