My aged feet aren’t in bad shape but they lack the spring in their step that I used to take for granted and a recent episode of plantar fasciitis, which wiped me out for months, highlighted my need to stretch more all the time and find a shoe or boot that looked after my most valuable asset as a walker. I also have disc problems which has impinged on the sciatic nerve and deadened the nerves in my left foot, which make fitting shoes all the more difficult. I have boots and any number of shoes which I try for a while but which always seem to fail. So I was fortunate to find Garmont’s ‘Trail Beast‘ shoe on sale with Massdrop. I bought two pairs in the blue as they were discounted hard and reviewed well. They come with or without Gore-tex and I now have both. I find the Gore-tex version a little sturdier. The upper features a lot of thick suede which must improve of the life of the shoe as compared to netting or nylon. It has a suede rand a great toe bumper that wraps the big toe, rather than stopping where the big toe would eventually break through the fabric of the shoe as is the case with my Inov8 shoes. At less that 1kg for the pair, It’s largish toe box and asymmetric features suit me for sure. It has a Vibram ‘Megagrip’ sole though the lugs aren’t particularly deep. I even found the insole they came with more than supportive for me so have kept this rather than upgrading. I think this a testament to the design and build of the shoe as a whole. They come with a couple of bizarre foam insets that adhere to the underside of the sole to raise the arch, I have used them but can’t say I have noticed any benefit. The Trail Beasts were quite unyielding when new but worn for a while they have become super comfy and supportive for long, stony Scottish trails. So far so good. A 9/10 from me. UPDATE: I thought I was unlikely to improve on these for my foot shape but lo! I recently converted to the Salomon X Ultra and won’t be going back.