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Asics Gel Trabuco 11 review

9 expert score
6 user's score
As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples. We purchased this pair at Running Warehouse with our own money.
Review written on 28th March by Jon Ober Serial Marathoner and Stability Running Shoe Expert
68 other reviews

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Verdict

The Asics Trabuco 11 is a shoe that both the seasoned trail runner and newcomer can appreciate. It gives a fast and firm ride that can handle rough terrain thanks to a grippy outsole and rockplate.

The pros

  • Comfortable and fast ride.
  • Exceptional Traction.
  • Rock plate provides good protection.

The cons

  • Tongue rides inward
  • So-so lacing system.

Where to buy

Best offers today in United States, all prices in USD

Rating breakdown

Comfort
9.0
Build quality
9.0
Upper
9.0
Sole unit
10
Landing
10
Transition
10
Toe-off
9.0
Traction
10
Durability
10
Value / Price
8.0

Facts / Specs

Brand
Model
Gel Trabuco 11
Previous model
Type
Weight
10.6 oz (301 g)
MSRP
$140.00

Heel
35.5 mm.
Toe
27.5 mm.
Heel drop
8 mm.
Carbon plate
No plate

Size/Fit

Sizing
True to size
Heel fit
Normal
Midfoot fit
Normal
Toebox fit
Normal

Cushioning & ride

Type of cushioning
Responsive/balanced
Amount of cushioning
Highly cushioned
Stability
Some stability
Flexibility
Medium

Trail specs

Rockplate
Solid protection
Traction
Provide Traction
Water resitance
Good

Best for these distances

Road-to-trail
Max cushion
Trail racing
Technical

Best for these terrains

Moderate trails  
Technical trails  
Rocky areas  
Muddy areas  
Through creeks and streams  
Through snowy or icy sections
Dirt trails  
Paved trails  
Through grassy sections  

Who should buy the Asics Gel Trabuco 11 ?

This is ideal if you are looking for something that has moderate support. Works exceptionally well if you are tackling trails with mud, rocks, or roots.

Who should not buy the Asics Gel Trabuco 11 ?

I wouldn’t get this if you want something that has a close to the ground feel as the stack height is on the higher side.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Introduction

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

Asics continues to impress with their latest iteration of the Trabuco; a moderately light shoe with a firm, fast, and adaptive ride.

Updates in this version include a slightly higher stack, improved outsole, and an upgrade to the rock plate. It currently retails for $140 which is not a steal by any means, but won’t break the bank.

While it has a lower profile, it is heavier than the Trabuco Max 2. It is most comparable to the Saucony Xodus Ultra, but it is also similar to the Hoka Speedgoat.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Impressions

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

This felt comfortable immediately out of the box. Walking around I could tell they were going to be grippy and was itching to take them out on the trails. I really liked the colorway and the topographical map in the bottom areas.

From the start, I was immediately a big fan. I felt completely in control and was taking downhills and uphills with ease. My home park is nothing short of rooty and rocky with lots of climbing and descents and these did great.

Further runs proved to be enjoyable. . The grip is some of the best traction I’ve seen in a trail runner. I had zero issues running on muddier trails and felt in control the entire time.

It did great going through stream crossings and had great drainage. Even taking these briefly on the road felt great.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Protection

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

The upper material is a heavy duty engineered mesh that is made of recycled material. It breathed great and dried quick when it got wet. If my feet got caught in sharp roots or brushed against rocks I never felt like the integrity of the upper would be compromised.

The rock plate helped protect me from sharp rocks and debris. There were several times I would step on something but wouldn’t feel it nor felt like it would penetrate through.

One other nice touch is the lace “garage”. While just an extra piece of elastic on the tongue, it allowed me to tuck my laces into the shoe and didn’t have to worry about the laces catching on anything.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Durability

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

This shoe is incredible durable. After testing, there were minimal signs of wear. I could see these being in my rotation for quite some time.

I would definitely take these on harsher trails than the trails I normally run in Maryland which consist of roots, rocks, and mud.

I would probably not wear these past a 25K but not for durability reasons. I just prefer a chunkier shoe for when I’m going to be out on my feet for a very long period of time.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Responsiveness & speed

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

The shoe handles well and can ride fast. This is thanks to the FF Blast midsole compound. It is firm and has a bouncy energy return. Despite the shoe being a little heavy, I could easily pick up the pace when I wanted to.

The outsole helped me stay in control on impact and easily lift off for quick transitions. I had no issues picking up the pace on any of the terrain I went on.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Comfort and fit

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11


The shoe fit quite well. I always found Asics shoes to be on the narrower side, but these run wide. It is true to size and I saw no need having to size up or out.

The lacing system is just ok. The loop lacing left me having to tie the shoes to get a locked down fit that would last for more than an hour. I was constantly having to re-tie my shoes when I was out in the woods for longer than an hour. I would have much rather preferred a traditional eyelets on the entire lacing system, not just as the top of my foot.

Perhaps one of the only other issues I had was the tongue began riding in. This opened the door to some extra debris and discomfort if I didn’t pay attention lacing up. The tongue is partially attached so it was never a huge issue.

That said, the lacing is forgivable as it really is quite comfortable. The heel kept me locked in and I never felt like I was going to fall out of the shoe when the laces were starting to get loose.

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 Conclusions

Picture of ASICS Gel Trabuco 11

I really like what Asics is doing with their whole trail lineup the last few years and this is no exception.

I really like the firmer ride and that it isn’t as chunky as the Trabuco Max. This allows it to be a little more flexible and not be as rigid. The grip on the outsole is exceptional and I hope other companies take note as this rivals even shoes that outsource to vibram.

If you are looking for something with a firmer ride with ample protection then this shoe is for you.

How does the Gel Trabuco 11 compare?

Asics Trabuco Max 2
Asics Gel Trabuco 11
Nike React Pegasus Trail 4
Expert score
9
9
8
User score
Best price
Retail price
US$149.95
US$139.95
US$139.95
Brand
Shoe type
Weight
10.8 oz
10.6 oz
10.4 oz
Heel Drop
5 mm
8 mm
10 mm
Recommended for
Moderate trails, technical trails, rocky areas, muddy areas, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Moderate trails, technical trails, rocky areas, muddy areas, through creeks and streams, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Moderate trails, through snowy or icy sections, dirt trails, paved trails, through grassy sections
Cushioning type
responsive
responsive/balanced
balanced/plush
Cushioning amount
Highly cushioned
Highly cushioned
Highly cushioned
Flexibility
medium
medium
medium
Stability
some stability
some stability
some stability
Sizing
true to size
true to size
buy half size smaller

Why you can trust us

As editorial policy, we do not accept free samples from companies.
We purchased this pair of Asics at Running Warehouse  with our own money.

This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Read more about our policy.
Lowest price:

$82

Asics Gel Trabuco 11 price comparison

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Best offers today in United States, all prices in USD

Reviewed by Jon

This review was written by Jon Ober on 28th March.
Jon Ober lives and runs in Baltimore, MD. When training for his first marathon, he lost over 100 pounds and has not stopped since. He now has multiple marathons and thousands of miles under his belt and on his feet.

User feedback (1)

  • avatar-comment-1032902
    Alex author rateauthor rateauthor rateauthor rateauthor rate
    7 months ago
    6 score

    I could see how one would like this shoe for easy runs on flat terrain. It is however rather chunky and heavy for picking up the pace. Not the most stable either. The grip is decent and handles mud okay due to the shape of the spikes. It is however very slippery on tree roots or wood (a few Woden bridges in my area). The weakest part of the shoe for me is the fit. I struggle looking my foot and running downhill results broken toe nails and pain despite being the correct size.

Lowest price:
$82

Where to buy

Best offers today in United States, all prices in USD

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