New Balance keeps pushing the limits on trail shoe design. The New Balance Leadville 1210 (MT1210) trail shoe (Women’s Version is the WT1210) is a focus on the “traditional” trail shoe named after the air-sucking race called Leadville Trail 100.
My understanding is that New Balance researched the foot expansion of ultrarunners which led to the design of the Leadville 1210 allowing expansion – top of the foot. Additionally, they included a small medial post in the shoe to assist with falling arches (which they also discovered in their research).
The Leadville 1210 fit true to size (come in wider widths). When lacing up the shoe, it felt like I could not cinch the shoe tightly. I noticed the thicker tongue which did not allow me to cinch the shoe too tight (allows the top of the feet to expand). I had no slipping issue and the shoe fit very nicely.
The Leadville 1210 upper incorporates New Balance’s Fantom Fit construction found in some of their other line of shoes (e.g., RC5000, RC1600 and the soon coming Minimus Hi-Rez).
The Vibram outsole contains well-designed lugs to provide great traction. The shoe has a forefoot rock plate and a fully gusseted tongue (welded with no stitching).
The Leadville 1210 comes in at approximately 10.5 oz and has a 8mm differential.
The Leadville 1210 was tested in wet, muddy and dry conditions on technical and non-technical trails. The shoe drained well during stream crossings. Mud was shed in some of the muddiest conditions. The shoe felt very good on the feet over the most rocky and technical terrain. I can’t think of any design suggestions on the new Leadville 1210. The end result – great design and fit.
- Forefoot Height -12 mm
- Heel Height – 20 mm
- Drop – 8 mm
- Gusseted tongue
- Stability Shoe
- Rock Plate (forefoot)
- Midsole – EVA
- Upper – Synthetic
- Made In – China
- Women’s Version – WT1210
Wow, l loved running in the Leadville 1210. Although designed as a stability shoe (due to the medial post), I would say that it felt like a neutral shoe. I loved the overall fit and attention to the details for the ultrarunner – foot expansion design, fit, etc.). Can you have more than one favorite shoe? Yes! The Leadville 1210 is one of my favorites for 2013.