Gear Preview: Altra Lone Peak 3.0

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Altra is one of the fastest growing companies in the trail running market segment. I can remember a few years ago when they released their first trail shoe, the Lone Peak. It was a remarkable shoe in that it offered a zero drop platform, a foot shaped toe box, and ample cushioning underfoot. In the last few years, I’ve seen subsequent models of the Lone Peak explode in popularity on trails all over the US. If you find yourself reading any shoe recommendation forum for thru-hikes or ultra trail running races, you’ll find that the Lone Peaks seems to find their way towards the top of just about every list. Altra’s newest iteration, the Lone Peak 3.0, is now available for purchase, and from my first few impressions, it picks up right were the old models left off. Most importantly, with the new 3.0, Altra has corrected a few of the imperfections users had with the 2.0 and 2.5, namely the lack security in the uppers.  This shoe is going to a monster seller for Altra, and I expect to see a ton of them out on the trail in the months ahead. Here is my preview of the Altra Lone Peak 3.0.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Gear Review
Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Gear Review

Support Trail to Peak by purchasing the Altra Lone Peak 3.0 on Amazon:

Men’s Lone Peak 3.0 | Women’s Lone Peak 3.0

Fit And Feel:

This is arguably the greatest area of improvement for the Lone Peak 3.0. The Lone Peak 2.0 had way too much volume. No matter how much I tried to cinch down the laces, the shoe always felt a little sloppy. There was also a bit of an issue with the amount of padding in the heel. The 2.0 felt like a DC skating shoe I wore in junior high. The 2.5 made slight improvements on the 2.0, but lateral stability was still lacking, and the shoe allowed my feet to slide around just a little too much, especially on downhills. The 3.0 made big changes to the upper, which I’ll cover below, with stitched overlays that really give the shoe a great improvement with lateral stability. The 3.0 keeps the zero drop and foot shaped toebox of it’s predecessors, but the overall fit and feel is a much more precise and polished shoe wearing experience. The Lone Peak is never going to be a Salomon SLAB shoe in regards to fit and precision, but this is a step in the right direction. When I first saw that this shoe was going to a sticked midfoot overlay, I was a bit worried as to how that would effect the overall experience. I’m happy to say that there are no uncomfortable internal seams or hot spots on the 3.0. The 3.0 has a great fit in the heel as well, without too much padding, and no slippage for my foot.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Altra Lone Peak Midfoot Overlays

I’ve worn a 12.5 in all of my Lone Peak’s, and they all fit a bit different. The 2.0 was too big, and I should have ordered a size 12. The 2.5 fit well at size 12.5, the same is the case for the 3.0 at 12.5. I’ve read a few reports of people saying this shoe fits small and that it’s best to order a half size larger than what you usually wear. I can see this as the 3.0 might be slightly smaller than the same size of the 2.5, but it works well for my foot. Your miles may vary.

My Lone Peak 3.0 came in at 12.21oz (346.3g) per shoe in a size 12.5.


As I mentioned above, Altra has made some serious changes to the upper of the Lone Peak for this 3.0 edition. A new stitched wrap fully encompasses the heel, wraps the midfoot, and protects the toe box. It’s a very big change for the Lone Peak 3.0 over the 2.5. I can already feel a huge change in security and stability, but I’m assuming this will also add a lot of life and durability as well. This wrap acts as a rand barrier as well, so it will be interesting to see how the Lone Peak 3.0 drains when wet. This looks to be the only issue I could see arising, as that much material on the upper might inhibit drainage. On the toebox and the medial arch portion of the upper, Altra uses a heat transferred plastic overlay that sits just under the stitched overlay. It’s actually surprising how little breathable mesh is on this shoe. The mesh only runs through the toebox and the upper portion of the midfoot. With temperatures in the triple digits here at home, I’ll get a chance to see if this effects the shoes temperature management quickly.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Uppers Lateral Side
Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Uppers Medial Side

As always, Altra goes with a foot shaped toebox on the 3.0 that feels just as good if not better in comparison to previous models. The tongue on this shoe is fully gusseted, and the laces and lace grommets sit nicely on the top of the foot without creating pressure points. Unlike previous models of the Lone Peak, I barely needed to tighten the laces to have this shoe feeling just right.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Foot Shaped Toe Box

Another carry over from previous version of the Lone Peak is Altra’s Gaiter Trap, a velcro tab on the heel of the shoe that allows for quick and easy attachment of trail gaiters.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Gaiter Trap
Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Laces And Gaiter Hook


The midsole of the 3.0 is very similar to the 2.0 and 2.5 with a thin layer of A-bound on top of a layer of EVA. A-bound is a resilient recycled material like that of a bouncy ball. I’ve really liked the combination of A-bound and EVA on previous models of the Lone Peak, and am glad they kept it around. The midsole of the 3.0 is zero drop with 20mm in the heel and forefoot. Altra places their Stone Guard rockplate in between the midsole and outsole for impact dispersion. Although the 3.0 midsole seems very similar to the 2.0 and 2.5, it feels a little softer underfoot. Like the previous version of the Lone Peak, this is not a rigid midsole. Although the upper added in the stability department, the midsole still feels like it will offer a lot of flexibility. This can be good and bad, depending on your preferences.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Midsole With A-Bound

Support Trail to Peak by purchasing the Altra Lone Peak 3.0 on Amazon:

Men’s Lone Peak 3.0 | Women’s Lone Peak 3.0


The other massive change for the Lone Peak 3.0 comes with the outsole. This is a brand new outsole design with a change to the rubber compounds used as well. Altra calls this new outsole MaxTrac. MaxTrac is a combination of hexagons, triangles, and trapezoids. The black feels like a sticky rubber and the blue rubber feels a little more firm and durable. For me, this is the most important improvement to the Lone Peak lineup. The outsoles for the 2.0 did not have very good durability, and I seemed to lose lugs after every run and hike. Things were improved on the 2.5, but the overall grip on varying surfaces left a lot to be desired. The 3.0 looks like Altra may have finally gotten the outsole for the Lone Peak figured out. Time will tell.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
The New Outsole

Closing Thoughts:

The Altra Lone Peak 3.0 is a very nice update to the 2.5. The brand new uppers and redesigned outsoles are welcome changes to the Lone Peak line up. The fit and feel of the new upper may not be for everyone with the overall fit and feel a little less spacious. For me, I like the increased stability and precision. The midsole of the Lone Peak stays the same, which I know many will be happy about. The outsole will be what makes of breaks the new Lone Peak in my opinion. If it’s sticky and durable, Altra will have a real all star on their hands. I expect to see a ton of Lone Peak 3.0s out on the trail this year. I love that Altra is the only trail shoe company that I know of that specifically markets their trail running shoes to hikers as well. We’re a large but overlooked community, I’m glad to see Altra taking notice.

Support Trail to Peak by purchasing the Altra Lone Peak 3.0 on Amazon:

Men’s Lone Peak 3.0 | Women’s Lone Peak 3.0

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Shoe Review Preview
Altra Lone Peak 3.0


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26 thoughts on “Gear Preview: Altra Lone Peak 3.0”

  1. What I’m really looking forward to is the mid version for fast hiking/running in the White mountains. Concerns will be durability of the upper and the soles durability and most important its sticky factor. If Altra doesn’t get that right it’s a deal breaker for sure. With the availability of Vibrim MegaGrip or even stickier IDR O grip they better get it right with their proprietary compound.
    Also this will be interesting to see how it compares to the new Hoka Tor Speed 2 Mid WP. Similar in function but the Hoka comes with MegaGrip sole.

    Jeff in MA

    • Jeff, I’m really looking forward to the mid versions as well once fall rolls around. The durability of the uppers and outsoles will be the critical for the low and mid. I’m hoping things have improved on that front.

  2. Very quickly tried on a pair of the 3.0’s this past weekend primarily for sizing as I’m really waiting for the mids to show up on the Altra web site so I can do the 30 day challenge.

    Via email Altra had told me they run true to size. Nope! While i take a size 11 in just about everything I needed an 11.5 in these. Pair of Darn Tough socks was used. Just an FYI.

    Also with the stock insole there was to much pronation lean/roll as I walked (i’m neutral from a gait analysis). I inserted my Sole footbed and everything was all good.

    Shoe seems nice from quick look over. Cant wait to try the mid version to see how they handle the rocks of the White Mountains.

    Jeff in MA

    • Thanks for the fit feedback, Jeff. I was able to wear my standard size 12.5 in the 3.0, but they did feel a tad more snug compared to other shows in the same size. Let me know how things go with the mid version once you’re able to get a pair.

  3. I just ordered a pair on Amazon. I have used the 2.5 on long hikes and they are superb. I did slip and have a nasty fall in teh Scottish Highlands but that might have happened anyway. The major issue I had with the 2.5 was the poor insole that lasted only about 300 Kms then was thin and useless. Altra suggest buying Spencos to replace as they do not offer replacement insoles so you should consider the need to replace the insoles a couple of times. My estimate is that the 2.5’s basic shoe lasted about 800 Kms which is fine with me. Hopefully the 3.0 will be just as good a shoe.

    • Thanks for the input from the Scottish Highlands. Very different than the hiking and running I do, so it’s great to hear how these shows hold up in different climates. Did the insoles have problems when they got wet, or did they just wear thin?

  4. Little follow up on the mid version
    New sole material is a FAIL if you hike/run in technical terrain like New England. Does not grip well. The shoe also immediately needs a footbed as there is next to no pronation control and far to easily rolls inward. Laces also will not stay tight without double knotting and I feel this mid did not have enough tongue padding as it gave me some ankle bite despite different lace techniques.
    Tested these for 75 miles of day hiking in Glacier National park where they were comfy and grip was ok on those really non technical trails. Did love the roomy toe box and I had no issues transitioning to zero drop. Developed a blister on one heel from what I think is a too loose a material in the heel pocket. I never get blisters and again despite different lacing, sock, socks with liners etc. it continued to get worse. I used my 5.10 camp four’s on the last day with no issues.
    Back in my home New England I did a very easy 6 mile trail run (I really want a mid I can actually run in for tackling trail running in the White Mountains) and a 28 mile day hike in the Whites. On the 28 mile hike I had along a new pair of Hoka Tor Speed 2 mids to compare to the Altra’s. The Tor Speed 2 Mid is really the Speedgoat in a mid version. I switched between these shoes multiple times. Much preferred the Hoka to the Altra except for its to narrow a toe box. No footbed needed. Pronation control was excellent. Laces stay tied, tongue had nice padding with no ankle bite and they were cushier despite similar stack heights. Where the Hoka really shined was grip. The Vibram MegaGrip was phenomenal. When I put my foot down I could trust it was gonna stick. To the point of getting away with taking not so smart chances. I’m used to 5.10 Stealth compound and this stuff compares. The Altra with their own new compound was just to sketchy for me. It constantly slipped and I had to think about it to much. I couldn’t trust it was going to hold which for me is an absolute deal breaker. I hike very fast and have to have confidence when I put my foot down. Not in the new Lone Peak 3. The Hoka was great except for the stupid narrow toe box which is also a deal breaker for me. They both went back.
    Honestly I think the Altra might be fine for many many people especially in less technical areas. I believe I could work around things I had issues with except the new sole. IMO they made a poor decision not putting the Vibram MegaGrip compound on the sole (like their Olympus) so I will not own this shoe. Maybe next revision. BTW you can easily run in the Hoka Tor Speed 2 Mid also. Hopefully Hoka will make a mid version of the upcoming Speedgoat 2 with the much roomier toe box and more cushioning. That would be MY shoe.

    Jeff in MA

    • Jeff, the Altra outsoles have not been very good for me either. Luckily, they’re moving to Vibram Megagrip on their new models. It looks like they’ve made the Speedgoat a little wider and more stable, Karl Metzger “Hello Camas. We’ve changed the way it’s posted, so it should not roll your ankle. What we had before did not bother me, but I do know what you mean. You’ll like the new models, they are amazing.”. Golden Harper, Altra’s founder on the new Lone Peak 3.5 “Bob, only the Lone Peak 3 and Olympus were made to be more secure due to overwhelming customer feedback that the LP2 and Oly 1.5 were too loose. The Superior has remained identical and future plans for Lone Peak and Olympus are already being executed that make them more relaxed through the ball and midfoot while still remaining secure for technical terrain.” The outsole on the 3.5 has remained unchanged though. The new King MT by Altra has Megagrip as I mentioned in my comment in the Sense Max post. I should have a preview coming soon.

  5. So the new Lone Peak 3.5 will not get the Vibram MegaGrip sole is what I get out of this and from looking at the link you sent me. This is their bread and butter shoe I think and putting MegaGrip on the bottom would benefit literally everyone vs other changes to the shoes which will make some happy and others not so much. Perhaps it’s the cost of the Vibram that deters them? Perhaps I will try out the Olympus or the new King MT but what I really wanted was a mid I could fast pack/trail run in with a super grippy sole.

    • That’s what I’m seeing as well. Have you tried the low cut shoes with a mid sleeve? I really like the La Sportiva Crossover 2.0. I just tried on the Salomon SLAB XA Alpine. The new Salomon Premium Wetgrip outsole is really sticky and durable. No ankle support like a mid, but keeps the snow and grit out.

  6. Hey Drew,

    Love the site! I am using your Camino list to plan my walk (from SJPDP) in June, so you might hear from me again. I am looking into the Lone Peak 3.0, and curious if you would go with them or the Olympus 2.0 for it. Also, I see that the LP 3.5 have a release date of June 1st, which is likely my departure date. I might consider buying them right before I go.

    Altra is also slated to release the Timp, which is an in between of the LP and Olympus, but I don’t think it will come out until July. Maybe I will find them on the way if I need a replacement pair!

    Any advice would be helpful. I might ask about backpack advice too 🙂 Thank you sir!

    – Charles

    • Thanks, Charles! Your Camino is starting soon, great to hear you’ll be walking from SJPDP! I’ve worn both the Lone Peak and the Olympus and they are both great shoes. I’m not a fan of soft cushion with a high stack height midsole for backpacking, so the Olympus would be a no-go for me with a pack on. The Lone Peak would be my choice, and is the choice of many PCT thru-hikers. The LP 3.5 is going to be released in June, but the only real change is to the upper. The midsole and the outsole look to remain unchanged.

      The Timp looks like an exciting new shoe. They will be out around that time, but I don’t know how many shops will be carrying them in Spain. Altra’s distribution in Europe is just starting to pick up. They do have some nice shops in the bigger cities though. You’re best bet would probably be in Leon.

      As for backpacks, if I were to start right now, I’d take the new Ultimate Direction Fastpack 35/45 or the HMG 2400 Southwest.

      • Thank you for your input! I will likely go with the LP 3.0s, but needed that insight with the Olympus.

        As for backpacks, the Ultimate Direction Fastpack 45 looks appealing but am curious about the cushionless waist strap and storage in the running vests instead. Wouldn’t lead to chafing or something?

        Also, have you ever heard of the MyTrailCompany’s Backpack Light 50L? This used to be the GoLite Jam, but with some light upgrades. I was greatly considering but didnt know if it was too much:

      • I haven’t had a chance to test mine with a heavy pack, but I should have a review ready for the new UD Fastpack in the next month or two. My Trail Co has some nice stuff, it’s good to see they’ve resurrected GoLite. That pack looks great for the price.

  7. Hello Drew,

    I am a new one on the trail running circuit, been running only since the past 3 months. I have picked this up as my first ever trail runner, and I am really very happy. In depth blogs like yours are helpful for beginners as well as experts. I really appreciate that this article was one of the helping hands that made me go for the LP 3.0.

    Now I need your advice.

    I have been wanting to buy a new pair of shoes to compliment my existing ones. I want to use another pair alternatively to have a different run experience on the trails. Which model do you think is good enough (Salomon/La Sportiva especially) that would be close enough for the zero drop technology. Does it make a huge difference if I have purchased a shoe having a huge heel to toe drop after using the LP 3, or using it in alternatives?

    Also, in 2-3 months, the trails I usually run to will turn very dry, dusty and rocky.

    Do let me know your opinion.


    Dighvijay from Pune, India.

    • Thanks for reading, and I’m glad to hear that my blog has been helpful. Preferences on ‘drop’ are completely personal. Go with what works for you. I prefer a 6mm-8mm drop, but that’s just what works for me. My favorite shoe this summer has been the Salomon Sense Ride. I’m also wearing my La Sportiva Mutants on anything dusty and sandy, and my Bushidos for when I have a heavier pack.

  8. Hi!
    Can anyone, who has Lone Peak 3.0, please measure the length of the insole for us12 or us13? I’m not sure about my size

    • To compare one’s foot length, the length of his Lone Peak 3.0 insole and the numbers in Altra size chart would be even better.

  9. All I can say is if the Lone Peak sizing is a anything like the Olympus it’s way off. Didn’t like the Lone Peak because of the non grippy sole compound so I took the chance and got the Olympus which has the MegaGrip. Started 1/2 size up and sacrificed a toenail so I returned them for a full size up and am living with them but really should go another 1/2 size up yet again. This is the Olympus but read any Altra reviews and their sizing is all over the map. Beware is my advice.

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