Chris Townsend tests a comfortable pair of waterproof trail shoes.

This review was first published in the September 2018 issue of The Great Outdoors.

MQM stands for “Moving Quickly in the Mountains”. But you don’t have to go fellrunning for these shoes to be worth considering. I find them excellent for hillwalking at normal speeds (in cool and wet weather, that is, as they have a Gore- Tex inner, which I find too hot in summer). Thankfully there is also a version without Gore-Tex. It costs £25 less too, making it excellent value for money. It was the Gore- Tex one sent for test though.

The MQM Flex shoes are lightweight and flexible and have a fairly wide fit – I can wear them for an all-day walk without my feet hurting. The uppers are seamless with TPU protection for the mesh. There’s a printed TPU film heel counter too, which wraps round the ankle for stability, plus a small hard toe bumper.

The tread is quite deep and the grip good. The midsole is thick and provides good cushioning. There’s a harder section under the midfoot to protect against rocks and stones, and an air cushion in the heel for extra shock absorption.

The MQM Flex are great shoes for hillwalking and backpacking. I like them very much.

merell.com

Overview

  • Overall: 4 out of 5

Pros: lightweight, grip, cost

Cons: Gore-Tex

  • Price: £115
  • Weight: 686g
  • Uppers: mesh/TPU
  • Outer sole: Merrell Select Grip
  • Mid sole: EVA
  • Flexibility: flexible
  • Sizes: men 6.5-13, women 2.5-8.5
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