The Inov-8 Mudroc 290's Trail Running Shoe Review

I have been a fan of Inov-8 for a few years now. They have delivered countless miles of reliability to my feet in many different conditions & distances. When I had the opportunity to get another pair, I chose the Inov-8 Mudroc 290’s. The Mudroc 290 is a low profile shoe (like many Inov-8 models) that features an aggressive tread. The treads are spaced apart to allow for grip & mud shedding on dirty trails. They have level 2 cushioning which is midway in their line with a 6mm differential from heel to toe. They are also a cool black & grey color scheme. Nothing is better than a sharp pair of shoes. One of the reasons I have been a fan of the Inov-8 line is because of the fit. They really hug your feet and keep them secure. My feet stay in place while bombing down the most technical of trails. The padding in the tongue and around the ankle adds to the comfort. They allow you to cinch the shoe up tight without discomfort.  This leads to another great thing about the Mudrocs, dirt doesn’t get in. I never have problems with pebbles or sticks coming in around my ankles. No gaiters needed for these shoes! Another good feature is the loop in the tongue that keeps it in place. No worrying about having to reach down & adjust during the run.


I received my Mudroc 290’s the morning of a race. I threw them on and went for a short run to test them out.  They felt like I had had them for weeks. My feet were feeling so good in them I decided to keep them on for my 10k trail race. Not many people would recommend wearing a brand new shoe & model for a race. But I knew the Inov-8 quality and trusted them so I went for it. They did not fail me. I noticed from the start the lightness of the shoes. The course was not very muddy but the treads worked nice on the rocks & roots. My foot stuck where I placed it. There were a couple of times when I turned my ankle in. As a semi-minimal shoe, there is no posting for support. I had been running in the beefy Terrarocs so I had to get used to this (subsequent runs have been no problem). The Mudrocs held up well on the downhills, allowing me to let loose on a few sections without fear of losing traction. I wound up winning the race! I can’t say if the Mudroc 290’s were the reason I won but they sure were a big help. I love everything about them. The snug fit, good grip and stylish appearance. As always, I am sold on Inov-8. Thank you to Mountain Peak Fitness & Campmor for the support & great gear!


Mudroc 290 stats

Weight - 290 grams (10.2 oz)
Footbed - 6mm
Differential - 6mm
Shoc-zone - 2
Gender - Unisex
Fit - Performance
Lining - Mesh
Compound - Sticky