I hate running. I believe it to be an evolutionary response to situations of great danger, and I refuse to perpetuate the notion of it as a viable form of outdoor recreation. I think, therefore I do not run.
Imagine my horror when a pair of Vasque Blur XCR trail runners showed up in the mail. After the initial shock wore off I stared at them while chewing a Pop-Tart: "Maybe they make running fun," I thought. Hmm.
Not wanting to do anything rash, I took them out for a high-angle day hike humping a thirty pound pack. The shoe was stiff but comfortably so, translating into great support. Unlike some XCR footwear it is truly waterproof, and like most XCR footwear it sacrifices a little breathability, which is only a problem in hot weather – get the non-XCR version for that environment.
What makes the Blurs my new best friend for light-to-medium fast hiking is the superb traction: the soles are not only sticky, but the lugs grab unbelievably well in loose gravel and mud. The laces are a little difficult to cinch up, but on the plus side they will not slip.
And yes, I did finally take them out for a run. Under duress, I might add, from a particularly noxious co-editor with a nasty running problem he doesn’t even have the good sense to hide. After three miles of what might charitably be described as a full-body moving vomit, I can report with absolute certainty the following finding: running still sucks, but a lot less if you wear this shoe.