Transition seamlessly from trail running to scrambling and ascents with Arc’teryx’s first foray into the trail running footwear market.
Article Update: This article was updated on 8/31/2018.
We have since reviewed Arc’teryx’s Norvan VT shoes. Read the full review.
The Norvan VT (also available in a GTX model with GORE-TEX lining) is designed for trail runners seeking a dynamic, durable shoe that is grippy and comfortable on rocky surfaces, and offers adequate foot support for varying grades. It appears destined for steep trails, with engineering elements intended for use on steep rock and singletrack.
This first trail running shoe signals another modest expansion for Arc’teryx, which has made strides out of its purist alpine climbing heritage with products like a ski mountaineering boot and avalanche airbag in recent years.
But much like those products, this shoe maintains the brand’s mountain roots with unique design elements that cater to the alpine user.
360-Degree Support System
The shoe relies on what the company calls a “360º Support System made of internal and external components.” This revolves around a unique lacing matrix that allows wearers to adjust how the shoe fits the foot while on the go, presumably more easily and precisely than re-tying and adjusting traditional shoe laces.
During normal trail running, the shoe would support and cushion the entire footprint, but for sudden vertical ascents and scrambles, the laces can be adjusted to provide greater support and “pull” the runner onto the balls of her or his feet.
The Norvan has a 9mm drop (26mm – 17mm) – slightly lower than a traditional running shoe – to encourage a mid-foot strike. Vibram soles transition to rubber on the forefoot for traction on slick rocks and scrambling in steep terrain, a nod to the brand’s vertically-inclined DNA.
Both the Norvan VT and VT GTX weigh around 11 ounces, with the GORE-TEX model coming in just a smidge heavier. Both men’s and women’s models are available now.