The slipper-like comfort of the Altra Timp 4 trail shoe is impressive with a wide toe box to allow the feet to relax and spread out, as well as luxuriously soft cushioning in the sole, a zero drop from heel to toe and a wonderfully padded ankle cuff. Even the tongue has padding underneath. The flex of the upper, with a slightly more rigid ankle, is also easy to like. It’s great to have a large pull-on loop at the rear of the shoes, too.
Walking and running in the shoes feels easy and natural. However, the softness underfoot and the relaxed upper means there is little support, such as at the foot arch, and if you are used to footwear that is a bit more structured and stabilising, you will need to build up to wearing the Altra Timp 4’s otherwise your may suffer niggles and injuries in foot and ankle muscles.
TGO Magazine verdictOverall, the shoes are at the barefoot end of the trail walking and running spectrum and will suit people who prefer a natural feel rather than those more used to being supported by their footwear.
- Lack support
- Slippery laces
- wide toe box doesn’t suit narrow foot
|Stack height: 29mm, MaxRac outsole, Altra EGO™ MAX midsole, quick-dry air mesh upper, foot-shape toe box
The wide shoe shape gives great confidence on uneven ground, whether walking or running, and the shoes are at the lighter end of those I’ve tested so they are easy to wear for long-distance outings.
The MaxTrac outsole offers good grip on most terrain, except for for steep, muddy and grassy slopes, so I would reserve the Altra Timp 4s for drier hill paths or hard-packed trails. They are not great on greasy rocks, nor wet tree roots, but few shoes can cope with these natural obstacles in my experience.
The uppers are made with a durable mesh, plus an overlap rand that almost circuits the shoe, a toe cap and heel protection.
Annoyingly the laces untie too easily and small bits of trail debris collect under the lace box.
Overall, the shoes are at the barefoot end of the trail walking and running spectrum and will suit people who prefer a natural feel rather than those more used to being supported by their footwear.
Written and tested by Fiona Russell
Fiona Russell is a size UK8.5 and has a narrow foot. She is a keen trail and hill runner, as well as a mountain walker and especially enjoys the Munros and Corbetts in Scotland. To test the Altra Timp 4, she walked and ran on a range of terrain.
The product weights are taken from Fiona’s digital scales.