Review: Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Written by

Katherine Takai

Long Distance Runner, former Sprinter.

This expert review is written by

Katherine Takai

Long Distance Runner, former Sprinter.
Katherine Takai lives in Denver, CO and is a budget analyst and fitness enthusiast.

Although she was a sprinter in high school, since became fascinated with endurance sports and began participating in long-distance running events over eight years ago.

During her leisure time, she can be found chasing around her dog on the trails of the Front Range.


We usually consider 10 ounces a "medium" weight for a running shoe: less than 10 and we are entering the lightweight category and above 10 the shoes start to be heavy.

Heel-to-toe drop

Heel drop is the measurement in mm of the difference between the height of the heel and the toe of the sole.

A lower drop (0mm - 5mm) promotes running on mid-foot and fore-foot, while higher drops (8mm - 12mm) are more traditional and meant to support a heel-striking gait.
Expert score

Expert Review: Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Quick overview

Best for
Regular training, long, slow training runs, marathon and 50k trail races, ultra distances, 50 miles and greater
Best for moderate trails, technical trails, rocky areas, through creeks and streams, through snowy or icy sections
The Pegasus Trail 2 does not always provide appropriate traction on wet and slippery surfaces
Lack Traction
Average Traction
Provide Traction
The Pegasus Trail 2 is maximally cushioned
Little cushioning
Medium cushioning
Highly cushioned


315 g
Heel to toe drop



Pros and cons according to our running expert

Pros and cons according to our running expert

  • Soft, breathable upper
  • Built-in faux gaiter prevents debris from entering the shoe
  • Stylish
  • Traction was unreliable on most types of trail terrain (ie., rocks and mud)
  • Heavy
  • Fit caused issues with stability

Our verdict

The Nike Pegasus Trail 2 is sufficient for road to dirt or grass trails; however, it does not perform well on most other types of trail terrain.

While its trail-specific features provide protection, this shoe’s traction and stability are particularly unreliable on rocky or steep terrain making it impractical for any technical trail running.

Introduction Nike Pegasus Trail 2

The Nike Trail Pegasus Trail 2 is a $130 shoe designed for commuting across town to the trailhead – mixing in road with trail.

The Pegasus Trail 2 is the newest model from Nike’s Pegasus series following the Pegasus 36 Trail.

This stylish shoe integrates new features to increase proficiency on the trail but is less trail-oriented than the Wildhorse.

Full length, React foam midfoot cushioning, an oversized outsole, and a neoprene faux gaiter come together for the first time in this shoe with mixed results.

Cushioning Type
The Pegasus Trail 2 is more plush than... Read more responsive: provides shock absorption and
Cushioning Amount
The Pegasus Trail 2 is maximally cushioned
Little cushioning
Highly cushioned
The Pegasus Trail 2 has a good mix between... Read more flexibility and structure
The Pegasus Trail 2 is not stable: not... Read more indicated for runners that need support
Not particularly stable
Very stable

Impressions Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 - Lateral Side

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 – Lateral Side

My initial impressions of these shoes were delight with its wild but stylish look and surprise by a higher stack than I’d ever imagined seeing on a Nike shoe.

At 9.4 oz., they are noticeably heavier than trail shoes that I typically run in – coming in about an ounce heavier than its Pegasus Trail 36 predecessor (which weighs in at 8.2 oz) and a few ounces heavier than my maximalist shoe of choice, the Hoka Evo Mafate 2 (which weighs in at 8.9 oz).

The heel tabs made it easy to slip into the neoprene faux gaiters and soft breathable upper; however, the shoe was wider and shorter in the forefoot than I would have preferred.

My first couple of runs in these shoes were on flat pavement and dirt trails, where these shoes excelled.

The React foam midsole provided a comfortable underfoot experience and adequate responsiveness for a heavier shoe. The breathable, soft upper kept my foot cool and prevented abrasions or blisters.

On my first true trail run up Bear Peak in Boulder – which is significantly technical with its steep, rocky ascent and descent – these shoes were not comfortable for long.

The outsoles were not sticky enough to provide traction on rock faces, which did not inspire confidence with my footing.

Additionally, the midfoot cage was not secure enough to keep my foot stable on uneven terrain. On the descent, the tips of my toes were smashing into the front of the shoe making them almost unbearable.

Ultimately, I would not opt to use these shoes for any trail with significant elevation change.

Protection Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 - Sole

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 – Sole

The oversized outsole provides excellent underfoot protection and extends out beyond the toe and heel, giving that “mountain-bike” feel like you can roll over obstacles.

The soft, perforated upper provides decent protection from rocks and other trail hazards. The perforation allows the shoe to drain and keep your foot drain if you encounter water.

As someone who doesn’t typically use gaiters, I appreciated the built-in “faux” gaiter prevented dust, sand, and annoying pebbles from entering the shoe.

The Pegasus Trail 2 does not have a rock... Read more plate.
Not present
Solid protection
The Pegasus Trail 2 does not always provide... Read more appropriate traction on wet and slippery
Lack Traction
Provide Traction
Water resistance
The Pegasus Trail 2 provides a decent... Read more protection from splashes and puddles
Water Resistant

Durability Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 - Pair

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 – Pair

After 50 miles over varied trail terrain, these shoes have fared decently well with no holes and few abrasions and only minimal wear on the outsoles.

Despite the softness of the upper, it has withstood contact with rocks and other hazards surprisingly well.

I anticipate this shoe being durable enough for longer efforts (50+ miles), especially on the types of terrain it excels on.

Responsiveness & Speed Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 - Top

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 – Top

Despite these shoes being heavier, it was possible to run fairly quickly in them on flat terrain; however, I would not wear these for trail races or speedwork.

While more comfortable, the upper is so soft that it compromises responsiveness.

The multidirectional lugs on these shoes did not grip terrain well; so they slowed me down on the ascent and descent, as I did not feel confident stopping when it was steep on any type of terrain really.

These may be suitable for long races on a combination of dirt and pavement.

Comfort and Fit Nike Pegasus Trail 2

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 - Toe

Nike Pegasus Trail 2 – Toe

These shoes run small, so order a half size to one full size larger than other trail shoe brands.

The mid-foot cage did not fit well around my narrow foot causing instability on rocks and other uneven terrain, so this shoe may be more secure on a wider foot.

My foot was slipping primarily towards the outside of my foot causing me to roll my weight onto my little toe.

The neoprene “boot” with faux gaiter felt comfortable around my heel, and the pull tabs made these shoes easy to take on and pull off. The lace system required a double knot but stayed secure.

The Pegasus Trail 2 fits a little small: buy... Read more half a size bigger than usual
Buy size smaller
Buy size bigger

Conclusion Nike Pegasus Trail 2

The Nike Pegasus Trail 2 was one of the coolest looking trail shoes I’ve run in, and I appreciated Nike’s integration of new trail-specific features in this version.

These shoes would be practical for a runner seeking extra protection while training on flatter dirt trails or for road runs that have some dirt sections.

The faux gaiter and oversized outsole are effective trail features that provide protection.

However, the lack of traction and stability make them unsuitable for running trails with significant elevation change, sloppy or muddy conditions, or on rocky terrain.

Ultimately, I will only use the Nike Pegasus Trail 2 for training runs on the road where I may encounter some dirt or other soft surface.

This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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