Pearl Izumi EM Trail N3 Shoe Review
The latest offering in Pearl Izumi’s EM series is the N3 trail running shoe. After wearing these for a few days on and off the trail, I find them to be an excellent shoe for daily non-running use and more than good enough for light trail work.
One of my favorite aspects of this shoe is the cosmetic design. My review pair in black and gray look more like a skate or street shoe than a traditional trail running shoe. If you’re not a fan of the prevalent neon colorways on the market, this is the shoe for you. It’s a classic, understated design that can be worn with running gear or with jeans or khakis.
The Pearl Izumi EM Trail N3 shoes are exceptionally comfortable for every day use. After a long day of running through airports and general travel stresses, my feet felt great. There’s a nice tension across the top and sides of the shoe, keeping it in place but not too tight. The sizing was spot on, not too big and not too small. A perfect fit.
The N3 is a neutral shoe with minimal arch support. If you need additional padding, correction or firmness, they should accept inserts without any problems.
On the trails, the thick, cushioned sole distributes pressure from rocks and roots evenly, absorbing rather than deflecting. The treads provide minimal clearance, but for a well-worn trail, that shouldn’t provide too much of a problem. I would like to see the shoe fit a bit tighter at the ankle, both for stability and to keep debris like sand and small gravel out. My feet stayed cool throughout the run, with special thanks to the large top vents.
If you need an all purpose shoe that can easily transfer from the street to the trail, this is a solid choice. For technical trails, a higher cleat and stronger grip may be a better fit.
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