Brooks Pure Grit Review

So, I received the Brooks PureGrit on Wednesday and decided to put the shoe through its paces with a few short trail runs. My initial reaction to the shoe had been positive, so I decided to wear it over the weekend in the Xterra Trail Marathon in Colorado Springs. What was supposed to be a nice jaunt on well-manicured rolling trails with really only a few technical sections quickly turned into a major field test. Race day dawned with a steady rain and temperatures in the mid-thirties. Snow was falling on the upper parts of the mountain course and trails that were once wide and well groomed quickly turned into an amalgam of clay, mud, and treachery. Definitely not my favorite weather to race in, but certainly great wear testing conditions.

Bonus: We’ve now added a video review of the Brooks PureGrit to the bottom of this text review.

Brooks Pure Grit

First Impressions
My initial reaction after trying on the PureGrit was how well cushioned it is while still maintaining a low profile and very agile feel. Weighing in at 8.9 oz (US men’s 9) this shoe is certainly not featherweight but seemed substantial enough for the long haul. The PureGrit has a 4mm drop (15 mm to 11 mm) and the curved last of the shoe made me feel nimble. Add to that an upper that really hugs the foot and the PureGrit received the go as my race day shoe over the Saucony Peregrine, my current workhorse. My only reservation with the PureGrit was whether or not it could hold up on the trails? My initial forays wearing the shoe felt very comfortable on the roads, and I was concerned that the soft cushioning of the PureGrit would not allow me to “feel” the trail.

An ultra-light dual density mesh really hugs the foot through the length of the shoe. Brooks kept things simple and functional, adding nothing frivolous or purely cosmetic. I didn’t experience any rubbing or discomfort despite basically running a marathon in them out of the box. The tongue of the PureGrit is thin and only padded further towards the toe providing some cushioning under the laces but saving weight and bulk. In keeping with the functional philosophy of this shoe the laces are very thin sausage links style and stayed tied without issue. Overlays throughout the shoe are well placed and kept my foot centered even while running on cambered trails. Brooks included a “Nav band,” an elastic band in the midfoot of the shoe which goes over the laces. I didn’t notice the Nav band enhancing the already glove like fit, and it did make it harder to lace up the shoe tightly. In fact, the Nav band does not even appear taut when I have the shoes fully laced and my feet are average width.

Brooks Pure Grit upper

A minimal toe bumper saved me several times as I kicked rocks without damaging my toes at all. The PureGrit also drains very well, as the shoes were soaked for the better part of four hours including multiple times when my feet were completely submerged in puddles. Despite this, they never felt water logged and my feet never attained that shriveled prune look they would have in a shoe that drained poorly.

The PureGrit uses BioMoGo with Brooks DNA compound throughout that gives a springy and responsive ride. The midsole cushioning was surprisingly more responsive than anything I’ve ever worn from Brooks. That being said, the PureGrit does not feel like an uber-minimalist shoe. Lovers of the minimalism of a shoe like the New Balance MT101 will probably find the PureGrit’s cushioning too substantial. The fact that I was able to run a marathon in them without feeling too beat up at the end is really a tribute to how functional and protective this cushioning is.

Any reservations I had about this shoe lacking proprioception were quickly dispelled and the PureGrit’s flexibility really allowed me to dig in on torn-up, clay-riddled areas of the trail where traction was dearly needed.

The outsole is where the PureGrit really shines. Concepts that initially seemed like gimmicks functioned beautifully on race day. I have to admit, I raised an eyebrow at the PureGrit’s outsole featuring a split toebox designed to allow the big toe to function independently to increase toe splay and balance.  For the record, this actually works. On cambered trails and corners the rounded outsole dug into the trail and that extra bit of splay seemed to allow my foot to function more naturally. This outsole cutout also did not seem to pick up any rocks or mud/clay as I thought it would, and this one piece outsole is very flexible and allowed my foot to extend through the entire foot plant.

Brooks Pure Grit split toe

The PureGrit features an anatomical last, which basically means that the outsole follows the natural curvature of the foot. The edges and heel of the shoe are rounded which helped me through the technical sections of the course where I had to run over large rocks slickened by rain and clay. Brooks designed the curved nature of the heel to help runners land more naturally in the midfoot and the heel-to-toe transition is very smooth. There is also a strike zone “pod” in the center of the outsole which is designed to inform the foot of the shoe’s center. I did not notice any extra cushioning features there, and not noticing is probably a good thing in my book.

Brooks Pure Grit Outsole

I worried that the lug pattern wouldn’t be substantial enough for such bad footing, but again I was pleased to be wrong. Coupled with the flexibility of this shoe, the lugs dug into the trail when I needed it most and I seemed to shed clay and mud from the PureGrit more easily than my fellow racers who complained of their trail shoes feeling like bricks.

The PureGrit does not have a rock plate, and again I scoffed at this absence. This may be the one area of the shoe which I have not been able to truly test as I did not encounter sharp rocks or scree fields during my wear test. My hypothesis is that the PureGrit will provide enough protection in the midsole save for the most technical and rocky trails.

Overall Impression
Being the skeptic that I am, when a trail shoe is released to a great deal of hubbub and anticipation I naturally look for the shoes vulnerabilities. The PureGrit got me through a horrible day’s conditions in the mountains and I am pleased to report that I cannot find any weak points. Whatever input provided by Scott Jurek and his lifetime on the trails created a fully conceptualized shoe in its inception. On climbs, I felt a great deal of traction, even in wet clay, and the relative light weight of this shoe, at 8.9 oz, didn’t weigh me down. The excellent cushioning allowed me to bomb the downhills, and my legs feel less beat up after a marathon than they ever have. Runners looking for the flexibility and fit of a minimalist shoe with the added protection of a long distance racing flat will find a winner in the PureGrit.

Originally marketed for release in early 2012, the PureGrit is available now (MSRP $100).

Call for Comments
Are you eager to get your feet into a pair of Brooks PureGrit? If so, what are you most looking forward to about the shoe?

If you don’t think the PureGrit is for you, why not?

Tom Caughlan

is iRunFar's Minimalist Gear Editor. Tom’s passion for trail running and specialty running retail experience shine through in all of his highly technical reviews, which do range outside minimalist shoes.

There are 84 comments

  1. Ted

    Hi Byron,

    You mentioned the Peregrine; could you please say more about the ways in which the two are different? Thanks!


    p.s. the description of conditions reminded me of Run Rabbit Run in September!

    1. solarweasel

      I, like Ted, am also very interested in how the Pure Grit differs/aligns with the Peregrine. They seem comparable:

      Peregrine: 9.7, 24-20mm, $90

      Pure Grit: 8.9oz, 15-11mm, $100

      Does the fact that the Pure Grit simply has less material underfoot translate to any less protection and/or cushioning than the Peregrine? Good stuff — thanks for the review Tom.

      1. Kim

        My 2 cents about the differences between Peregrine and Puregrit: the Pure fit is much more glove-like than Peregrine (which seems a bit sloppy to me). The cushioning is great for both, but Pure is lower to ground and feels less clunky than Peregrine. I did feel a bit of pull on my achilles from Pure the first time I ran in them, which I've never felt from Peregrine (or VFF and Minimus, for that matter).

  2. Jim Blanchard

    I just finished a rocky technical 50k in the Pure Grit and was more then pleased with the performance. Exceptable underfoot protection in the rocks for a minimal shoe. The solid rubber out sole seems to help against sharp rocks. Good to know that this shoe also works well in the wet. Agree about the Nav Band. Good idea but maybe Brooks needs to make it adjustable. Confident it'll be improved by the 2'nd generation of this great shoe. Thumbs up so far.

  3. Bart Smith


    Thanks for reviewing the PureGrit. I have been running in pair for about a week and I am very pleased with them. Love the "anatomical" fit; it just surprises me that more shoe manufacturers have not discovered what a foot looks like and how it functions.

    The outsole functions beautifully, good traction and very flexible. Bomb proof in technical rocky/rooty terrain.

    As you mention the NAV band is pretty worthless with regards to holding the foot in place, however it provides a nice little pocket to stick your lace ends into. I have noticed on the women's model that my wife is wearing this band is much more taunt and seems to serve the intended purpose.

    On very steep downhills my foot has a tendency to slip forward more than I have noticed with my Inov-8's. But this could be a "break in" phase and the shoes are still loosening up a bit during the runs.

    I have not had the opportunity to run the shoes in the extreme nasty conditions you experienced but so far I would give the shoes a 9.5 out of 10.

    Thanks again for your review of what I believe will prove to be a great shoe.


  4. Tom Caughlan

    Ted/ Solarweasal: I am a huge fan of the Peregrine, and I will say that the biggest difference between them is the cushioning. The Pure Grit has more responsive and substantial cushioning; some may like this, others may not. The Pure Grit is technically more low profile ((15mm to 11mm) than the Peregrine (24mm to 20mm). The fit is quite similar with the Pure Grit hugging the midfoot a bit better. Both have ample toe boxes but the Pure Grit is a tad bit longer in my size 9.5.

    I felt that the extra cushioning was really helpful on the downhills and like I said in the review, my quads are less beat up then I've been in a long time.

    Either way, both great shoes and they feel similar in a lot of ways. If you want more cushioning in a slightly lighter package, then the Pure Grit is the way to go.

  5. solarweasel

    Thanks for the follow-up, Ted. Good stuff.

    I'll probably stick with the Peregrine for now since it seems to have enough downhill cushion for my needs. Seeing as the Pure Grit is both lighter and cushier, that suggests to me it might be less durable over time. I'll try it out if it lands in the local running store — until then, ordering another pair of the (still cheaper) 'grines :)

  6. Scott Keeps Running

    Nice in-depth review, Tom. I echo most of what you had to say. I've been a Cascadia guy for the past 5 years and was super excited to see Brooks offer a lighter weight trail option. I wore them straight out of the box at the Mt. Spokane 50k a couple days ago and they performed marvelously. Didn't have near the wet and mud that you had though. :) I'm super-stoked about how comfortable they are and how my feet were able to respond to the trail. I feel they allowed my feet to "feel" the trail without having to feel every single rock or root. Huge thumbs up from me.

  7. Average Runner Shann

    Intriguing. I am a huge fan of the NB WT101s, and I notice you mention 101 fans may not like the level of cushioning. However, I guess I have kind of a split personality, as my road shoes are Nike Pegasus. I am always trying to find shoes that bridge the gap between those two extremes, so I will definitely give these a try. Thanks for the review!

    1. Tom Caughlan


      I really do find these to be in the middle of those extremes. I loved the MT101 but I felt beat up after runs over 15 miles. I also like cushy road shoes like the NB 890 and Asics Blur 33. I would give these a try.

      By the way, you will find a bit more, and softer, cushioning in the WT110 as well.

  8. Mark

    Technically speaking the Pure Grit is more minimalistic than the upcoming NB MT110 (15/11 vs 19/15 mm). I'm wondering about the actual low-to-the-ground feeling though.

    1. Tom Caughlan

      I spent about three months in two versions of the MT110s as a wear tester for NB. I will say that they feel lower to the ground than the Pure Grit despite the stats. The MT110 also don't feel like they have as much cushioning. Both are great shoes and I think both will appeal to a wide group of runners.

    2. Bryon Powell

      I'm just copying NB Product Manager Bryan's MT110 data from below so that it's part of this discussion. He adds, "Just to clarify, the midsole height on the New Balance 110 is 11 – 7mm. The overall stack height (outsole + midsole + strobel, etc.) is 19 -15mm."

  9. David

    I'm curious what these feature in the way of arch support. I love that the MT101's don't have much, if any, arch support to speak of; are these similar to the MT101's or do they offer an arch that is similar to the Peregrines?

    1. Tom Caughlan

      As far as arch support goes, the Pure Grit has more arch support than the MT101s (which have none in my opinion). I would say that they have an arch similar to the Peregrines, but the last of the Pure Grit does seem to conform to the foot better. However, there aren't any specific arch support devices or pronation control peices of plastic in the midsole.

  10. james

    Ditto what has already been said. Nav band not really functional imo, I have slightly skinny feet. Light, cushy, look great. I'm not sold on the split toe design other than saving weight, jury still out on that. I felt they would make a great door to trail choice, sounds like Tom gives a thumbs up as well. Thanks fellas. Cheers.

  11. Emma

    Thank you SO much for this review Tom! I have been very back and forth on the PureGrit because I am currently running in two different shoes, both technically road shoes, but I, like you, I saw a lot of things about the PureGrit that I wasn't exactly impressed with; like the Nav band and the lug pattern. But I'm glad to hear that it was such a good experience running for you in this shoe. After my first ultra this past weekend (New River 50K), I've decided I need a good trail shoe and I like this one and the idea of it, but was leery and wanted to see some credible reviews first, like this one!

    Looking forward to going out and buying a pair! Thanks Tom!

  12. Chris

    I pre-ordered the PureGrit and have worn them on a couple of runs. I was a Cascadia die hard but the latest offering just wasn't good IMO. I was stoked when I put on the PureGrits.

    My first run was a combination of road, and twisty up/down single track here near my home in Oregon. I LOVED THEM! They were great on the road, good on single track. One item I noted that others have mentioned is my foot tended to push forward in the shoe on steep downs. I stopped halfway through that run and retightened the laces and that problem went away.

    My second run was in rainy, muddy conditions. The shoe was great in the mud but I do have one negative: the outsole seemed a bit slippery on wet roots/rocks. Not 100% sure if this was the shoe or just that it was the first rain in some time…

    Anyone else notice any lack of traction on wet roots/rocks? Other than that: A+!

    1. Mike

      I'm disappointed to hear that the wet rock traction is lacking. I run on very rocky trails in Connecticut, and I find wet rock traction to be lacking on pretty much all the shoes I've tried, except for Inov-8's roclite series. Unfortunately they don't fit me very well.

      I'm a big fan of the Peregrines except for the wet rock issue, and was hoping the PureGrits would be similar with better traction.

      Are there any other low drop shoes that perform well in this area?

      1. Bart Smith

        Hello Mike,

        Not sure if this will help but I'll try.

        My experience with Inov-8 roclite series is similar to yours; they are bomb proof on slippery rocks/roots etc. When you get to be my age this type of shoe is a god send. I had a slight problem with fit originally (I have a low volume foot they say) but this corrected itself when I began using shoes that allowed my foot function better. Also due to a back problem that I went through hell with, I was advised to go barefoot around the house as much and to make certain my shoes were not crowding my feet. The Green Silence came along at the right time and they were the ace in the hole. Bottom line: over the course of less than a year my Inov-8 fit problem went away as my fore foot literally changed shape.

        As stated, hope this might help. It is just one runner's experience and not a one-size-fits-all cure-all.

        Good luck,


        PS. The only other shoe I have used that is as bomb proof as the Roclites on the slippery stuff is the Minimus.

  13. Mark

    Great review! My Pure Grits are on a brown truck as I write this, can't wait! Your review describes exactly what I was hoping the shoe would be. I tried the MT101 for about 5 runs, but my rocky terrain just beat me up too much, so I am looking forward to a little extra cushioning. Keep up the good work!

  14. Peter

    I thought that the more mm in underfoot protection (24-20mm of the Peregrine vs 15-11mm of the Pure Grit) means more cushioning. Isn't this true?

    1. Bryon Powell

      Peter, Different materials provide different amounts of cushioning, so height doesn't necessarily equate to cushioning. Midsole materials provide more cushioning than denser outsole rubber. Even different midsole materials can provide differing amounts of cushion. On the other hand, large widely space lugs can mean a high height, but might (not necessarily) leave uncushioned, unprotected gaps between the lugs. Just giving examples of how height doesn't equal cushion.

  15. Andy

    Any word on fit/sizing? I've been running in older Cascadias in size 11 with orange Superfeet, but also run in Minimus (road and trail) in 10.5 — obviously without insoles. My true size is probably really a 10.5. Any advice on sizing these? I'll have to order them online as no one seems to have them in yet around here. Thanks.

  16. Bryan

    Just to clarify, the midsole height on the New Balance 110 is 11 – 7mm. The overall stack height (outsole + midsole + strobel, etc.) is 19 -15mm.

    Bryan Gothie – NB Product Manager

  17. Tom Caughlan


    I wear a 9.5 in Saucony, NB, Nike, Asics, Montrail, Salomon, etc…These fit true to size but did feel just a tad longer than usual. However, I had no issues with this extra room as the midfoot fits so well. Just more room for my toes. I did not experience my feet sliding forward on downhills or anything like that. True to size in my opinion.

  18. Jim Blanchard

    On the Nav Band issue. You know all those safty pins you get

    at packet pickup. I used one to pin up the slack in the Nav Band and after several runs it seems to be holding well. The Nav Band does work, it's just too loose. Are you listening Brooks?

  19. TJ


    You mentioned in the video that the medial side of the midsole is slightly higher than the lateral side. Because of this, do you think this would not be a good choice for over-pronators?

    Thanks — TJ

  20. Andy

    Have now had a chance to put them thru their paces over about 4 hrs, including a solid 2+ hrs yesterday on a mixture of technical singletrack, some double, and about 6 miles of road. They are stellar on all surfaces, and are definitely my go-to shoe now. Interesting to note that they definitely life up to Brooks' billing in terms of the construction thoroughly preventing heel-strike, and do give good ground feel and footing even on cambered trails. Will be interesting to see how they hold up over the ultra distance runs. The only down-side so far is their limited toe bumper, but overall no complaints, only praise. They are a joy to run in on all terrain.

    Mike, for what it's worth, I also live (and run) in CT on wet rocky rooty trails and find them, so far, to excel in mud and on wet surfaces.

  21. Tom H

    How will these hold up in snow? Thinking about registered for a 50k this winter when there will be quite some snow on the ground and want to make sure my feet wont freeze in these.

    1. Andy

      I think they are a bit light and porous for snowy conditions, but it's hard to say. Also not clear what traction will be like, though they seem like they would accommodate Microspikes or YakTraks pretty well.

  22. Sniffer

    ive noticed that the strike zone "pod" has caused some discomfort in my right foot following a 50k. Super stiff arch after the race and now two days out I put the shoe on and feel exactly where the pod is. I didn't notice this at all when I first bought them.

  23. Alex

    My only comment here is that weight really doesn't have anything to do with a material's durability. For example, carbon fiber is ridiculously strong and very light weight. When comparing the polymers (plastics, rubbers) that these shoes are made of, it's properties are going to be determined by additives to the polymer that will not necessarily change the weight or density, but could have a huge effect on softness, hardness, "durability," etc.

  24. Pawl

    "Cushioning" is a suspect term for me, the problem being the indentation that develops under the balls of my feet. Over time my forefoot begins to ache following a run; I attribute this to the fact that I'm "landing" precisely in a ditch (albeit a small one) rather than on flat or at least varying ground. I've not read any others on lists mentioning this, so I might be off, but when I reach inside the shoe (any shoe with cushioning that squashes over time) I can feel the indent. Example: I've really enjoyed the inov-8 Road-X 155, but I have to stop running in them long before their time, simply because of the cushioning collapse. Some of this, but not all, are the insoles; removing them doesn't help when the collapse extends to the soling layers. And it's not always accompanied by an equal amount of wear outside/beneath.

    As for the MT101s, I find that sometimes the minimal cushioning reminds me from time to time [the beat up feel mentioned] that I'm losing my "better" [footfall] form. I think "okay, how would I be running if unshod?" and adjust accordingly. Plus, the price is nice on these! (For goodness' sake, why should some minimal shoes cost twice as much?)

    And arch issues. Consider the arch in architecture. Sure, if the arch is collapsing or collapsed, then some support is needed. Otherwise, the arch [that is part of nature of the human foot] is not meant to be "supported." In my opinion, this is one of the single-most pernicious falsehoods we've all grown up with, that arches inside shoes will help prevent the arch from collapsing. Pfaw!

  25. Steve A

    I tried these out today and have decided to run in them in next year's Marathon Des Sables. They feel like they have the right blend of strength and stability without any excess weight. I'm really looking forward to taking them out!

  26. BenG

    I love the feel of the Pure Grit but have some serious problems with the traction. On dry leaves they slip/slide a bunch as they do as well on wet packed dirt or wet rocks. It seems the material they used on the outer sole does not have the most traction. My road shoes (newton motion) have ten times as much traction on the trails than the pure grits. Otherwise, the shoe is fantastic. But a slippery material is truly a problem for a trail shoe.

  27. james @reddirtrunner

    After more runs I have a better feel for these. Many have mentioned issues with a lack of traction. I have not experienced this in both wet and dry conditions. The only exception being on wood foot bridges when wet. Holy smokes, like running on an ice rink. Otherwise, on damp leaves or mud it seems acceptable. Split toe design is non functional in my opinion. Nav band works to keep laces neatly hidden, that's about it. Springy cushioning is nice, not too much or too little. I switched from traditional trail shoes and on longer runs covering technical terrain my feet and legs felt trashed. Not from feeling rocks and such underfoot as the protection seemed ok. Perhaps it was the lighter weight and lack of protection I am used to. Definitely a transitional curve exists if moving from "average" to a more minimal, low drop shoe. I think for Rocky Raccoon they will work fine. But for tougher terrain, for now, on longer runs I will have to go with Plan B.

  28. Mike Papageorge

    A pair of the Pure Grits arrived on the 23rd and I've put about 30km into them so far. I've not run in a low drop shoe before so I'm taking it easy and switching between them and my well worked Adistar Ravens (underrated!!).

    The shoes have a pretty amazing fit and protect the feet well. I've been on some singletrack, crappy rocky washed out backroads and some steeper very rocky descents and so far so good. I've also stubbed a few smaller rocks and sent them flying without any sore toes or sailor talk :)

    I've not had any traction issues, but it is still dry where I am and no leaves to be seen anywhere.

    I have to say I'm surprised at how easily I was able to switch into these and just run (although I'm still not 100% confident in them as I am the Ravens). Nice and wide in the toebox and the upper is glove-like.

  29. JackRabbitJames

    Good to see so many comments. Where I do most of my training runs there is wood bridges to cross, wet rocks and roots. Any one have a updated opinion about traction on wet surfaces for the puregrit shoes before I go to Fleet Feet to purchase?




    1. trailrunner76

      Tony, I have the Pure Flows, you can try them on at the Green Emerald… they have a nice wide toe box and I think a similar fit. :) oh,im in a size 12, so I guess if your not a size 12 it doesnt matter. :(


  30. Steve

    I did a 60k beach run with these over the weekend and found they worked well. No blisters and good grip (about a 20k was soft sand and the rest hard). I did have to adjust the lacing a few times but that was ok. Also I had velcro for gaiters sewn on and while the cobble sewed the front piece on halfway up the front of the shoe (leaving the mesh exposed to sand), I had no sand in the shoes. I was happy.

  31. Mike Papageorge

    I ran a 93km ultra this past weekend in the Grits. The terrain was mountainous and varied from (very) rocky and technical to gravel fire roads. 3800m up and 3000 down, so plenty of steeper single track with rocks and technical bits.

    The shoe was great and my feet feel very good after the race. Traction was not perfect, on some loose dry soil sections in descents there was some slipping, which also soemtimes occurred on (mostly dry) bedrock areas. Some of the lugs on the grip are missing bits having been sheared off. Note that I have only put about 160km on the shoes and this shearing happened during the race.

    The front of the shoe took a little beating from the smaller rocks and I'll likely be taping it in order to ensure a longer lifetime of the shoe. My toes were fine, but the shoe left a little ragged.

    I would definitely run this race in this shoe again, but hope that Brooks can get a stickier longer lasting grip on the shoe, and perhaps a little something on the soft material at the front of the shoe.

    (Put the Speedcross 3 grip on the Grits!)

  32. Jacques

    Darn good cushioning for a minimalist shoe. But with any minimal shoe I have to ask myself if I'm going to be able to lightly dance on the rocks for 100 miles. If the answer is yes, then these might go the distance for you. I'd be stumbling around too much after 60 miles, myself.

  33. James @RedDirtRunner

    Joe, plenty of cushion in my opinion for a hundred. But, for me, the question would be protection. I don't know that course but if rocky I'd need more of a shoe. My buddy wore them pretty much out of the box for a 9th place finish at Pinhoti 100 and loved them.

  34. trailrunner76

    Hi guys and gals. I currently run the Speedcross 3's and love them. I wear the Pure Flows on the road and really like them enough that I want to try the pure grits too. Is the sizing and feel similar to the Pure Flow's?


  35. Erik Bahnsen

    Looking for input on durability of these shoes. My guess is since folks are commenting on poor wet performance , they are not made with sticky rubber which in my opinion typically melts away quickly.


  36. BILL

    the upper on this shoe is very confortable, i found the insole spongy so I took it out, it feels better to run without this, much closer to the ground.

    however, my biggest problem with this shoe is the grip. on a 3 hr run today on muddy trails with some rocks I slipped more that once on the rocks, whilst actually walking. On any slippery surface, including muddy paths, brdiges, rocks, these shoes are something of a hazard. Given the price of this shoe is about 20% higher than others in the same category, i dont think this is good enough.

    some nice promo work around the shoe and lots of good reviews, but the main critism you hear ehoed is the grip. A real problem for what is meant to be a trail shoe.

  37. Erik Bahnsen

    Just wanted to offer some feedback after wearing this shoe for the past month. I live in Lyons,Co and the trails have been snow covered, then muddy and now dry. They performed well in all these conditions. In the the real muddy clay type stuff the lugs did clog easily, and at times required stomping to get mud out of lugs. I did not experience poor wet traction people back east and North west are encountering. But I believe those conditions are much different than CO.

    What I do want to report is that I'm having heal pain. I have been running in Merrell Trail Glove and prior to that the NB MT101. I had my complaints about both of this shoes but I didn't have post run pain. My complaints with those shoes were raw feet from 101 and no rock plate with Trail Glove. So I will return the Pure Grit to Boulder Running Co (which is awesome place to do business with, let me run in shoe for 30 days and return no questions asked). I guess I will look at MT110 which treadmill video tests says I overpronate in and the newly released Vertical K.

    If anyone has experience with sizing or how hot the vertical K is, I would love that info.

    Tomorrow is friday and look forward to AJ"s pick of the week (beer that is).



  38. elizabeth

    I am forever adjusting the laces in my shoes. After 3 miles, I feel my feet are almost asleep and I need to losen then but then notice more movement of my foot than I want within the shoe. I am determined to figure this out. The decreased sensation is on the top and bottom of my foot. Any ideas?

    I have had one run in my new pure grits. It was comfortable and I like the shoe but still had this issue.


    1. Steve A

      I had these issues for a while but happily now seems to have gone away after some adjustment in the middle laces. Also, just got back from running the Marathon Des Sables in these shoes and have had no issues and barley a blister. I ran with orthotics (Pure Grit are one of the few shoes that could comfortably accommodate them). While the lightness of the shoe meant I head to be careful with how I placed my feet in case of stones, all worked well.

    2. Bartman


      Try changing out the insoles. The insoles provided by Brooks is extremely smooth and slick and allows far to much foot movement. On steep downhills you find your foot sliding forward and which any side pitch to the trail the shoes will be wonking on you. I took the insoles out completely and the problem went away.


  39. Jacques

    Elizabeth, I found the Nav band to be too loose and completely useless for holding my foot in place. By folding it over and then securing it with a safety pin, I was able to get the band snug enough . I think the band in a good idea, just too loose for me.

  40. Eric Fullen

    I have heard that the sizing of these shoes compared to most others (Nike, Asics, Adidas) is a half size smaller. What size shoe do you wear in other brands? Did you find the sizing to be the same or a bit smaller?


  41. josh of all

    Whoa was this the review I needed! I having been doing all my trail running in Saucony Peregrines and recently won a gift certificate for a free pair of shoes from my local running store. They were out of stock in my size so I tried some different shoes on (really wanted a second pair as backup in a dropbag this weekend) and went with the Pure Grit, but very hesitantly. It's reassuring to know they are similar. I love the comfort and glove like fit of the Pure Grit, but was concerned about the addition of some cushioning. I don't find the Peregrines offer any cushion, just a thick buffer between your feet and rocks and roots on the trail. I love running in true minimalist shoes, but the soles of my feet simply cannot take more than 5-10 miles before they are hurting bad enough to be distracting, and sometimes depending on terrain, too much to continue on. I think the race this weekend is going to have some significant downhill, especially in the last 5 miles and I might wear the Pure Grits from the start and hope to not need a change. I will put a couple of trail miles on em tonight to get a feel, but have confidence after seeing this review that I made the right choice.



  42. Sheryl

    I just ran Wapack 50 miler in Puma Nightfox and my feet (legs, arms, back, etc) have never hurt so bad! Granted, it is a tough course but I came away with 8 blisters and two bruised toenails. I do think the shoe was too small initally and I did experiece substantial swelling.

    That being said I am looking for a new trail shoe. I used to run in Salomon and loved them but I am ready for a softer shoe since I am training for the Vermont 100. I have heard the terrain is gentle enough for a road shoe.

    I love what I am reading about the Pure Grit. I have had a pair of Cascadia but they were too much shoe. Would you recommend running a 100 in these? if not, is there a shoe you do recommend?


  43. tess

    That was a really helpful review thanks! I wear orthotics and have been running in Saucony Xodus but find them too clumpy and heavy and also seem to get some arch discomfort! I recently bought some NB 110's which are a brilliant shoe but unfortunately don't really accomodate my orthotics so I can only wear them for short distances or walking! I have been looking for a low profile lightweight trail shoe that my orthotics would work with. I was a bit worried that the Peregrine would have the same arch as the Xodus, but I think I will give the Pure Grit a try if they are orthotic friendly! :)

        1. tess

          thanks mine are solid 2/3 but not too bulky compared to some I've had, normally they fit into pretty much any shoe, it was pretty disappointing they they didn't work with the NB 110's!

  44. kaddiemo

    I just tried on a pair of pure grit tonight and loved them right away. I am not a runner though and want them for an upcoming trip to New York City- walking. Do you think they will be ok for this purpose? Thanks all!

  45. D-Mo

    I agree with BenG. Wet weather traction is non existent with the Pure Grits. I love the Pure series with 500+ miles on the Pure Connect and still going strong. I have ran 2 races in them (100 & 70 miler) and they performed great as long as it wasn't wet. If they could use the traction from the Inov-8 295's it would be an awesome shoe!!!!!

  46. wsabg

    Hi all, I am using the PureConnect for two months now and will get a pair of PureGrits for spring. I've run a couple of runs including half-marathons on trails and hilly terrain with the Connect, but now it's getting wet and slippery and I need more traction.

    I am a bit confused about all I read here about the NavBand. From my point of understanding – and how it seems to be designed – the NavBand should go UNDER the laces, not over them. Having my shoes laced like that, I have no problems with the NavBand, it's holding nicely. I also exchanged the original laces to some Xtenex which allow me to adjust the lacing for each hole seperately.

    Will tell you about my Grits as soon as I got them,

    happy trails,


  47. tess

    These shoes were brilliant I did a marathon and 50k in them and all my long runs with no blisters or hot spots! Unfortunately during my last run I ended up with a huge painful bruise on top of my foot, never felt any discomfort there before! I think with age the fabric upper has gone out of shape and creased! Its a shame as the rest of the shoe looks good and I've done less than 300 miles in them :(

    Now I have to decide whether to buy more or try something different, if I'm not even going to get 300 miles out of a pair they work out pretty expensive!!!

  48. wsabg

    Got my Grits today – and the NavBand ist completely different from the one on my Connects. The way it's fixed on the Grit, there is no real use or function on it rather than putting the laces into it. I hope this feature will be redesigned with the PureGrit 2.


  49. kristina folcik

    I have been running in pure grits since sept 2011 where i bought them the night before a trail marathon and pr'd the next day! They are awesome! Traction is an issue in new england but a bloody knee or two is worth the speed and comfort of this shoe! I just ran sawtooth 100 and wore three pairs throughout the race. One small blister and no missing toenails! My favorite shoe! Only downfall is i wear through them in about 6 weeks but i run a lot too so im not sure anything else would hold up either. :)

  50. kristina folcik

    I wore the pure grits for wapack 50 and just wore them for sawtooth 100. I use speed laces as i had problems with the stock laces. I have never had foot issues in the pure grits. Every other shoe i have worn caused problems.. i did change my shoes two times at sawtooth but my feet felt great after 103.3 miles on very rugged terrain!

  51. Beau Thomas

    I tried them on at CHAMPS in the mall near me. I couldn't believe how comfortable they felt. Like a bunch of little pillows around my feet. Felt so good. I run trails mostly, so I am also looking forward to trying them out on the trail as well. Just saving up to buy them.

  52. John

    Did you wear socks? You mentioned " The PureGrit also drains very well, as the shoes were soaked for the better part of four hours including multiple times when my feet were completely submerged in puddles. Despite this, they never felt water logged and my feet never attained that shriveled prune look they would have in a shoe that drained poorly".

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