Graeme McCullam is a trail junkie that has used some of the best trail gear available over the years. This is his independent review of the FujiTrabuco Pro which he recently put through their paces in the USA:
I took the FujiTrabuco Pros across some epic trails in the United States, including the Animas River trail which runs tight though town and is on a concrete path. I am amazed by how the shoe feels on concrete or tar, just like a fast road shoe. Nice and firm but the bounce from the Flytefoam is definitely there. The large lugs don’t squeak or feel displaced when I run on a hard surface, so you get a good solid road shoe feel.
I took them to a rocky path, laden with fist-sized sharpish rocks and loose debris. The rock plate worked fantastically, I didn’t feel a single intrusion into my feet, didn’t even think about that once so you know then that it’s doing its job! I was also please that the sock liner was there, so no loose stones or debris entered the shoe. It felt great to have this tech incorporated in the shoe.
Last week I was in the US to support Jock Green, a close friend, at the Leadville ultra-trail race. On the pre-race run we took on the last 10km of the race course and had to go up (and down) a steep, rocky, loose climb. The grip on the ASICS FujiTrabuco Pro was awesome! Absolutely no slipping at all both up and down. The shoes gave me a feeling of trust in them that they wouldn’t slip coming down fast that was greater than my trust in myself, so that allowed me to relax and let go a bit more knowing that I had secure footing. Quite a relief as my trail skills are a bit rusty! Definitely as good, if not better, than top shoes from other brands that I have run with.
The sock liner has been great, I haven’t had any debris inside the shoe at all and it feels comfortable around the ankle, not too tight or constricting at all. I did find at first that the underside of my ankle bone on the outside, only on the right foot, felt sore and a little bruised from the top of the shoe pressing on it. Obviously because of the sock liner there is no padding around the ankle and that bone on my right foot is a bit lower that the left one. After some runs the soreness disappeared, so it was just a matter of getting used a new shoe - something that most of us experience when moving to a new shoe.
Overall the shoes feel great on my feet, I have fairly narrow feet so the shape and width of the shoe suits me. Holds my foot with even pressure and no tight spots. The heel cup is very secure, with no movement at all. The lacing system works but for me it’s a bit finicky getting the tightness even over the length of the top of the shoe and then having the laces loose over the top of the shoe seems like there is potential for them to get hooked if you run through thick growth. To prevent them getting hooked, I suggest tucking the laces underneath the laces at the sections where they crossover from the eyelets; in this way the laces become more streamlined with the shoe.
The FujiTrabuco Pro is now available in South Africa from most sports retail stores.