Montrail has just received two highly coveted awards from prominent outdoor publications. The Mountain Masochist shoe has received Gear of the Year Award from Outside magazine in the trail running category, and the Hardrock 09 was given the Best Run/Hike Crossover in Backpacker’s annual Gear Guide. Here is a link to the press release.
As you may know Montrail was purchased by Columbia. There has been a lot written and commented about how Columbia has ruined the Montrail brand of shoes. After testing the Hardrocks and looking at the new Mountain Masochist along wiht the above stated awards Montrail has addressed these concerns. I believe that Columbia has brought Montrail into the present with well designed shoes that meet the needs of the average trail runner. Once again this is my opinion and time will tell if I am correct. I believe that a large company like Columbia understands marketing and competition very well and based on competion from companies including Inov-8, Pearl Izuma, and Stumptown, has made the necessary changes to stay relevent and hold market share. I know that the trail runner does not care about market share, but a good product will lead to higher market share, especially in this market. I have no brand loyality when it comes to shoes, if It feels good I wear it. Most of us probalby feel the same way. So do not judge Montrail until you check out the new line of shoes and give them a try.