Altra Escalante 2 Intro
The Altra Escalante 2.0 is the latest iteration of one of Altra’s most popular road shoes. Like any other Altra shoe, the Escalante 2.0 is built on a zero-drop base and features a foot-shaped toe box.
The Escalante line has always been supremely comfortable. Each edition of the shoe has featured a fully knit upper, which has allowed the shoe to feel more like a sock than any other running shoe I’ve ever worn.
The Escalante 2.0 is still quite comfortable, but Altra has added a bit more structure/support to the upper compared to the original version.
While the Escalante 2.0 is still the most comfortable running shoe I’ve ever worn, by a large margin, I’m not convinced that the increased support within the knit upper was necessary.
Altra Escalante 2 First Impressions
Out of the box, the Altra Escalante 2.0s were absolutely fantastic.
The shoes fit true to size, and there were no issues at all taking them for a 20-mile test drive for my first run in them. The Escalante 2.0s were pretty much exactly as I expected: comfortable and ready to go from day one.
Altra Escalante 2 Sole Unit
The sole of the Altra Escalante 2.0 hasn’t changed much from the original version.
The outsole of the Escalante 2.0 is still made with Altra’s FootPod Technology, which is designed to mimic the bone structure of the human foot to allow the shoe to bend and flex at the same places that your foot bends and moves while running.
The midsole is once again composed of a proprietary foam blend (Altra EGO) that provides a comfortable ride with a little bit of springiness with each step.
About the only difference in the sole from the OG Escalante to the Escalante 2.0 is that the stack height is slightly smaller in the newest version (24 mm v 25 mm).
The difference in stack height certainly isn’t enough for me to notice any difference in how the shoe feels or performs on the road.
The Altra Escalante 2.0 definitely provides a very smooth ride on the roads. The softness and springiness of the EGO foam is as comfortable as advertised, and I am still able to feel the road beneath my feet while wearing these shoes.
The sole of the Escalante 2.0 is also quite durable, which came as a bit of a surprise to me based on how light the shoe is. This shoe will hold up to many miles on the roads, without losing much (if any) of it’s springy feel.
Altra Escalante 2 Upper Unit
When it comes to the upper, this is where the Escalante 2.0 differs from previous models of the shoe. That said, and as I mentioned earlier in this review, the differences in the upper are quite subtle.
The upper of the Altra Escalante 2.0 is still fully knit and completely seamless. But unlike previous models of the Escalante, the upper of the Escalante 2.0 does provide a little bit of additional structure and support of the foot.
Thankfully, this extra bit of structure doesn’t take away from the comfort factor at all. The upper of the Altra Escalante 2.0 bends and flexes to really fit snugly around your foot, but doesn’t go so far as to be restrictive.
I have yet to experience any rubbing, hot spots, or other problems while running in the Escalante 2.0s.
While the knit construction of the upper provides a great level of comfort while wearing this shoe, it doesn’t provide much of a barrier to water.
If the Escalante 2.0 gets wet, your feet will get wet. That said, the Escalante 2.0 is also incredibly breathable so your feet won’t be wet for long.
Altra Escalante 2 Conclusion
I was a big fan of the original Altra Escalantes, I was a big fan of the Escalante 1.5s, and I’m absolutely a big fan of the Escalante 2.0s.
This shoe, for me, just checks all the boxes.
It’s light. It’s cushioned, but not overly cushioned. It’s super comfortable. It’s durable.
I don’t know what more that I can say about this shoe that I haven’t already said. This shoe really is that good.
We purchased a pair of Altra Escalante 2 from runningwarehouse using our own money. This did not influence the outcome of this review, written after running more than 50 miles in them.