Scott Kinabalu 2 Trail Running Shoe | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Scott Kinabalu 2 Trail Running Shoe | Review

The Scott Kinabalu 2 provides all-day comfort, and an efficient stride, for long-mileage trail running

Why We Chose The Scott Kinabalu 2 Trail Running Shoe: Versatile, comfortable, confidence-inspiring

Designed to be Scott’s most versatile trail running shoe in their quickly expanding arsenal of lightweight runners, The Scott Kinabalu 2 has been built for long mileage on the trails. This is all thanks to a highly technical midsole that’s been designed to provide energy return on every stride, while an aggressive outsole provides bite over a range of terrain. Let’s take a closer look at these kicks.


The upper has been built from a lightweight and breathable mesh to keep your feet comfortable on a run, while a polyurethane support cage helps to both provide shape to the shoe while working to protect your foot from any scrapes. Talking about protection, there’s also toe and heel guard to further protect your foot (and the shoe) from any rock hits.

The tongue has been designed to be form-fitting in order to fit a wide range of feet, while the traditional lacing system helps you to tune in the fit exactly how you like it. Scott has also included a locking eyelet to help pull the heel into the heel cup of the shoe (which has been reinforced to provide further protection).


Looking at the midsole, Scott has made use of their own in-house Kinetic Foam to produce a material that’s capable of springing you out of every turn – so much so that Scott claims that this foam midsole is able to return 14% more energy (compared to standard EVA) on every stride. With many brands pushing more responsive midsoles, it’s great to see Scott step up with their own version.

The heel thickness runs at 29mm while the forefoot sits at 21mm resulting in an 8mm drop. This drop will help produce a very natural midfoot to toe off stride, which is further enhanced by Scott’s ‘eRide’ rocker shape. This rocker shape has been designed, and shaped, to reduce heel striking by creating a stable mid-stance to encourage runners to strike the ground from their midfoot.

“Flip the shoe over and you’ll find an extremely aggressive looking outsole.”

A midfoot strike is more efficient – over both short to long distances – thanks to the lack of a breaking effect caused by a traditional heel strike where your foot is placed in front of your knee. But what does this all mean in the real world? Well, you’ll theoretically be able to keep up a high tempo on the trail for longer and will hopefully keep any signs of fatigue at bay for longer distances.


Flip the shoe over and you’ll find an extremely aggressive looking outsole. Scott says they’ve produced this outsole to provide “traction on any trail”. This has been achieved by creating an interesting multi-layered lug design – one that doesn’t look too dissimilar to that of an all weather tyre found on that of a 4X4. It’s designed to bite into different levels of dirt, roots and trail features in order to optimise the ground contact and enhance traction. 

You also got a neat Ortholite ECO X-40 Footbed slipped as the insole to help provide support, while preventing your foot from sliding about while you’re deep in the trails.

Tester’s Verdict

Will Renwick, editor of Outdoors Magic

“Last summer I conducted a test to find my favourite grippy trail running shoes and I was absolutely bowled over by the performance of La Sportiva’s Mutants. I ended up having many happy miles in them and considered them to be the best trail shoes I’d ever run in.

“But then these came along. Sorry La Sportiva, but I’m going to say it… these are even better.

“I’ve done a lot of trail running and hiking in these over the last three months and they’ve been excellent. I like that the sole is stiff enough to block out sharp roots and rocks but there’s still a proprioception and responsiveness. I like the slight rock they have which makes them feel really fast. I like their breathability, I like their protection and I like the grippiness they provide. And, well, they look pretty good too I reckon.

“I had these in my usual size, which is a UK size 10, and the fit has been excellent. I’ve not felt any hot spots in these, even over the course of 20+ mile runs. I’ve done some hefty hikes in them as well and have found that the cushioning and toe protection makes these great for those days on the plod too – they’d make a great thru-hiking shoe.”

Scott Kinabalu 2 Trail Running Shoe

Selected for the Outdoor 100 2022/23
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