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Inov-8 Terroc 330 Trail Running Shoes: Long Term Review

I’ve been using Inov-8 Terroc 330 trail runners for 3 season hiking since April 2010. I just started using my fifth consecutive pair for peakbagging and backpacking, plus I bought another two pairs so that I’ll have more when I wear these out. If that’s not brand and model loyalty, I don’t know what is!

Inov-8 Terroc 330 Trail Running Shoes
Inov-8 Terroc 330 Trail Running Shoes

I got turned onto these shoes last spring when I was preparing to hike across Scotland in the 2010 TGO Challenge. Hiking cross-country in the highlands is very boggy and requires many stream crossings. Leather boots were simply not going to work and I needed a shoe that could drain water quickly and not “bog” me down with extra weight. I’d also had a bad experience the previous summer with wet leather boots in Maine’s 100 mile wilderness, and I didn’t want a repeat of that adventure, slogging for days in wet boots that felt like cinder blocks.

But switching away from my old beloved leather Asolo 520 hiking boots was a big step for me. I tried a lot of different trail shoes looking for ones I liked without success. Finally, it was Chris Townsend’s recommendation of the Inov-8 Terrocs that led me to try these shoes. The rest is history. I’ve switched to Terrocs for all of my 3 season hiking, peakbagging, and backpacking trips.

Inov-8 Terroc 330s - Sole Wear
Inov-8 Terroc 330s – Sole Wear

Transitioning to Trail Shoes

If you’re used to a hiking boot with a stiff shank, getting used to the Terrocs may take a little time.  Switching to them doesn’t hurt or anything. It just feels very different to walk in them: your feet will feel noticeably cooler, your toes will have a lot more space and they’re much lighter than heavy boots.

You will also walk faster. When I switched to Terrocs,  I added a 1/2 mile per  hour to my walking  pace. I’m not a speed hiker or anything; it just takes less effort hike the same miles.

Another big difference between the Terros and leather boots is what I’ll call rocker. The soles of my leather Asolos always felt like they were curved up slightly at the front and rear of the sole to harness the momentum of my stride and propel me forward. The Terroc soles don’t feel like that at all. They are very soft and compress flat against the ground or rock. This provides better traction on wet surfaces and makes it easier to scramble on rock.

Blisters and Sock Liners

I have not gotten one blister since donning my first pair of Terrocs and I reckon I’ve hiked, climbed or backpacked over 1000 miles in them. I usually only wear a thin wool or synthetic liner sock with them although I occasionally add a gore-tex outer sock in sustained cold rain. I also keep the lacing quite loose at the top of the tongue and my feet slide around a fair amount in the shoe.

This is a complete 180 from the things I used to do to prevent blisters when wearing leather boots. I used to wear synthetic liner socks and outer wool socks, I’d pre-tape my heels to prevent friction blisters and  I used Superfeet insoles religiously.

I’ve left that all behind.

ITB (Illiotibial Band Syndrome)

Since I started wearing Terrocs, the frequency and severity of the ITB bouts that I experience has been greatly reduced. Before I started wearing these shoes, my hiking range was limited to a maximum of 75 miles. Now I can go for 175 miles without any knee or fascia pain and keep walking as long as I want. That’s a life changer.

Stream Crossings

When I come to a stream I just walk right through it.  I scout for a safe location to cross, but I don’t even bother with rock hopping or trying to keep my feet dry. I just walk right in and keep going when I reach the other bank.

I always pause though for a second when I reach the opposite shore to watch the water jet out through the mesh of my Terrocs. I still get a kick out of seeing this. After that they dry pretty quickly, but it depends on the humidity. Plus, my socks dry out fast because I’m just wearing thin liners and not a thicker sock.

Wear Patterns

I can get about 400 miles out of a pair of Terrocs if I’m very careful and only wear them for hiking trips. They start to really show wear though after 250 miles. The tread wears down under the ball of the foot and heel and their traction on wet rock degrades noticeably.

Mesh Breakdown - See Right
Mesh Breakdown – See Right

The mesh also starts to break down on the exterior of the shoe, at the base of my big and little toes. At first, I thought our house mice were eating the salt that accumulates there, but I met an AT thru-hiker named “Bama last week who said the same things happens with his Terrocs. He reckoned that holes were caused by the fact that the shoe bends there with each step.

Weight and Sizing

Terrocs run about 1/2 size small for me, so I wear a US Mens 10. This is a roomy fit for me, which helps because my feet swell when I hike for a few days consecutively. In this size, Terrocs weigh 12 ounces per shoe. For comparison, my old leather boots weigh 27.5 ounces each. That pretty much says it all, doesn’t it?

Where to Buy

Zappos.com (free shipping) has an excellent selection of Terrocs and Inov-8 shoes in a wide range of sizes. The Terrocs retail for $110 USD/pair.

Disclosure: The author owns this product and purchased it using their own funds.

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  1. Im a recent convert to trail runners myself, about 6 months or so now. One of the best moves I ever made imo. I used to get recurring tendon injuries in both my legs quite a bit, but remarkably haven't had any such problem since making the switch. This wasnt the reason for switching from leather boots, just a very pleasing side effect. As you state above, it is so much less effort to cover distance now.

  2. I bought a pair of Innov-8 Roclite 288 GTX high top trail runners a couple years ago. They are simply my favorite hiking boots. Ever. I'm sitting at my desk in my office wearing them now. They are lightweight, grippy, and comfortable. They fit better than any leather boot I'd used in the past. They fit my foot better and on long downhills, I don't get "toe slam" like I did before, whereas to prevent that, I used to need to go oversize on my boots, which created other problems.

    The only issue I had with them is that due to their very light construction, thorns could penetrate the sole. I cut some titanium inserts to stop the thorns but I sounded like I was walking on beer cans. I replaced those with thin Lexan inserts I made but they eventually broke apart. Finally, I put in some Superfeet inserts (which my doctor recommended because of my flat feet and plantar fasciitis), and those stop the thorns and give my feet the final item they need–other than a good trail to follow…

  3. Ouch – but I like the idea of titanium superfeet!

  4. I am using the same concept with Salomon Techamphibian 2 Water Shoes. Added super feet and a thin wool liner sock.

    Right through the stream and let the body heat dry out the socks, I am wondering when it will be too cold to continue doing this; late September?

  5. Tom – that's what I experienced last year. Wet feet got cool in the evening hiking through Maine in late September.

  6. I've been happy with my Terroc 330/Defeet Wooleator combination. I'm trying some plain, flat Spenco insoles in mine to add some more comfort for those really long days on the trail.

    I've also tried the Roclite 295, which appear to be the same shoe with a softer (stickier) sole. To me, the 295s seem to run a bit larger than the same size 330s

  7. Anyone out there with Plantar Faciitis issues have any comments to make on these shoes and trail runners as a whole?

    I'm sort of hesitant to give up my light weight fabric and leather Danners which has the excellent support I need to combat the Plantar problem..No these are not Warts, it is an inflamation of the thick connective tissue in the heal.

    Any comments would be welcome…thanks.

  8. I had problems with Plantar Faciitis about 11 years ago when I started to get really active again in backpacking. I used custom orthotics in hiking shoes for several years, and then moved on to green Superfeet insoles in trail runners for a year or so. Now I'm at the point that I use the Terroc 330s (which are very flexible, and don't have a huge amount of cushion) with flat Spenco insoles. I haven't had even a twinge of PF pain in years.

    I think the key is that the Terrocs flex under the ball of your foot, that I regularly walk/run, and that I do the recommended stretching…

  9. The more I hike, the lighter my footwear becomes. Four years ago, I wore heavy Merrills. Three years ago, the lighter Merrill Moabs. Last year I wore low-cut Vasque Mantras.

    Last weekend I wore my trail running shoes — Brooks Adrenaline ASRs up the Osceolas. I couldn't believe the difference. The real change is on the descent. I'm a big guy and tend to be slow on the downhills. With the trail runners, however, there's more flexibility in the soles. I can actually feel my feet and toes gripping the granite as I rock-hop down the hill.

    I thought my feet and legs would be tired for a while afterward, but it wasn't the case. Now I'm wishing I'd worn them on all my hikes…

  10. You know it is sort of funny on how I have digressed over the years in the realm of foot safety..When I was a kid we either went barefoot in the summer everywhere we wondered or wore those old black canvas "tenner shoes" as we hiked on the old Indian trails and didn't have half the foot problems I do now wearing $185 boots that are supposed to protect my feet..Lol's …

  11. I had a really bad bout of plantar fasciitis a few years ago. I could barely walk for a while and for months the first steps in the morning were like walking on glass. The doctor provided me some silicone heel inserts and I purchased a few more sets at Footsmart.com. I wore those for several years but haven't used them for a couple years since the problem seems to have gone away. I also stretched my foot in bed before I tried to get up in the morning. I wear Innov-8 288 GTX shoes on the trail and have the orange Superfeet inserts and a very light memory foam insert in the footbed and don't have any pain now… well, no pain from the plantar fasciitis. At my age, there's enough pain in other parts of the body to more than make up for it!

  12. yes i nov-8 are great. but I prefer Mizuno wave harrier 2 (now called harrier 3's and heard the newest ones are harrier 4's) ….confusing, but are supposed to be for fell racing (hill running… as the inov-8's are)

    they are perticularly good for wide feet and have done the tgo challenge in them, tour de mont blanc, french alps) alta via 2 (italian alps) and many weekend walks and are still going strong after several hundred miles…oh and I am using them in a weeks time doing the GR5 from lake geneva through french alps, swiss alps and Italian alps.

  13. Lilo – you are making me envious….

  14. Ok folks, lets be honest here..Please..for I would really be unhappy to find this website has the same problem a number of other sites have..and if I go out an purchase the many suggested items to find that they really don't work..

    I'm sorry, but I had this problem over on a national Backpacking website and actually caught 4 posters who worked for, or benefited in some way, from the company of the items they were suggesting.

    I also caught 5 alleged backpackers who said they were on a specific trail at specific time with this fantaboulus gear that I was on at the same time and never saw them and I should have been right on top of them..

    I'm 62 years old and have been hiking since I was 7 years old carrying a pack my dad made up for me from an old Marine Corps WW II haversack that he came home with from Iwo Jima. I have hiked over 30,000 trail miles and have had at least 1500 nights out under the stars include a stent in the Marine Corps with those nasty Shelter halves..

    So please how many of you posters have a marketing connection in some way shape or form with the item you are suggesting…thank you

  15. Eddie –

    I have zero relationship with this manufacturer. ZERO.

    But I am really glad you raise the open disclosure issue. I have tried to raise it with my fellow outdoor bloggers, but many fail to endorse the moral responsibility of owning up to open disclosures on product reviews and have browbeaten me for even raising the issue. Here's a post and their comments on the topic. Please add your opinion there. I wish more readers like you would demand this kind of information so it becomes a must have on online product reviews.


    Despite their objections, I remain resolute. I care much more about my readers than any manufacturer relationship and will continue to disclose all manufacturer relationships in my product reviews.

  16. Earlylite, I know your not for if I even had an inkling you were I would not be posting here.

    I've been visiting and not posting here on and off for some time trying to decide whether I should join in or not. For I thought you were, as I said, I would not be posting on this website.

    I want true honest input from good folks and with the dishonesty as a whole in the Marketing world you just cannot trust what they are telling you and many a time I have gotten burned on worthless equipment and in one case Hypothermia to where I needed evacuation by a SAR Team. So I am real careful…By the way I tracked down and exposed the girl who recomended that piece of clothing at a Backpack equipment show in front of a dozen or so perspective buyers..so it is just not men…

  17. I thank you for that but it only underscores the problem. People think it's ok for hobby bloggers to post reviews because people who regularly read their blogs know they can be trusted (or that's their argument). But the truth is a lot of people who read blogs are referred by search engines and don't have a personal relationship built up over time with the blogger. Those people should be protected by an open disclosure statement where the blogger openly declares whether they have a manufacturer relationship or not. The hobby bloggers know this of course, but think that being an amateur is some excuse for shirking moral responsibility. Right – tell that to the University of Miami football players who took perks and are getting their school blacklisted from NCAA football for it.

    Go Eddie – call out the fakers and people posturing to be places where they weren't. I was taught to "do it because it's right." Old fashioned and stuck in my ways, I guess.

  18. Sadly it is just not the Univeristy of Miami, they just got caught…I know of three top 10 Teams who I know boosters for and well…Sometimes personnal ambition and the team fever that goes along with belonging to something takes over from common sense and fair play..Just like the Marketing people we were disccusing on an earlier post…..

    I am a Former Marine and I know that until the day I die I am a brother and belong to the worlds largest Fraternity of brothers with all current and former and past Marines..We have a bond no other Branch of the service has. We are all grunts and riflemen first and above all else. I would never do anything to bring shame or embarrassment to the Marine Corps name and reputation…. But there are those who have and will in the future,,,just like College Sports Teams….

  19. Eddie, I appreciate your concerns. I've posted a couple times about my Innov-8 288 GTX high top trail runners. The only connection I have with Innov-8 is that they got some of my money when I purchased the boots, which I'm sure they appreciated.

    I became aware of them when I saw an ad in a magazine that advertised them as the lightest waterproof boot on the market. The timing was great because my Merrells were being held together with Shoe GOO. I researched and found the Innov-8 line runs a little small so I ordered size 11-1/2 for my 10-1/2 feet, which was too large. I returned them and ordered size 11, which was perfect. Once I added the relatively heavy Superfeet inserts, some of the weight advantage evaporated but they're still much lighter than anything else I own, including my Nike air-whatevers.

    I wish Innov-8 had the same boot without Gore-Tex because I'd like to just leave them on and tramp through streams and let the water drain. I worry that the Gore-Tex won't dry fast enough. Last October, I hiked with my brother in law on the Eagle Rock loop in Arkansas and we had several dozen stream crossings, most of which could be navigated with the boots but some were knee height. I changed into some jerry-rigged water shoes for those. My homemade, extremely light water shoes were definitely not ready for prime time.

    Perhaps someone can enlighten me on whether or not the Gore-Tex would impede drying. I have stomped through streams in the past in my Merrells and lived to tell about it.

  20. Just found your site. I have been using trail/approach shoes for years, mainly Salomon's they fit me well, as my primary hiker. I am mostly a day hiker, glad to see these types of footwear are stepping up to the level you have been using them for. Glad to see you have made the switch, I have been trying to get my friends to do that for years. I am in the market for another pair, I will give these a try. Thanks!

  21. I will be looking into these Invo 8's as soon as my Plantar issue resolves itself, Currently I carry a pair of light weight wading shoes should the topo map and my advanced trip plainning reveal a large number of water crossings. But it will be hard to wean myself off of 45 years of wearing Danners..

  22. It was hard for me to switch away from decades of leather boots too. But it's an eye opener. I don't even bother rock hopping across streams or walking around mud anymore. Just plow right through and I don't need camp shoes. There's simply no point in carrying crocs or sandals when my existing shoes are just as cool and comfortable.

  23. Sounds like you have stopped using Superfeet insoles — does this mean you just use the factory Inov8 insoles? Sounds from your positive review that the factory insoles must be adequate — is that true?

  24. I don't need Superfeet in my trail runners, but I still use them in my 5 pound pair of mountaineering boots.

  25. Just stumbled across this when researching getting some Terroc 330 to go backpacking with and wanted to say thanks for the review.

    The IT band syndrome was a very interesting read as I’ve started having behind the knee pain during longer hikes with steep grades ever since becoming a cubicle monkey. I’m ordering a roller foam today.

    I’m a newbie to backpacking and one question I have is crossing streams with your shoes on. How do you not get blisters? Do wool socks dry that much faster? I’ve tried synthetics but they don’t really seem to be much better than cotton. My stream crossings are typically 1-2 feet deep cold water (snow runoff) and my shoes are always water logged. I’ve gone through barefoot or with Crocs but if you could tell me a better way I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you!

    • I wear synthetic business black socks now that are very slippery and I just don’t get blisters. Possibly because I walk so much. possibly because my feet slide in my shoes and never really rub against anything. Wetness doesn’t effect me. Can’t really explain it – but lots of my hiking buddies wear these shoes and experience the same things.They also drain/dry really fast.

  26. I use trail running shoes religiously indoors/outdoor running/walking my dog but never would have thought to try them on my hikes. Gonna try this this weekend and see how it goes. Would love to just buy one pair of shoes instead of running and hiking boots.

  27. I bought these shoes a while ago based on this review and am quite pleased with them. They weigh as much as my New Balance sneakers did (weighed on kitchen scale) but have a much better tread for unpaved surfaces. I wear these as casual sneakers on Fridays and for hiking.

  28. I bought an inov8 baregrip 200 purposely for my 6d5n trip tu Mulu National Park in the rainforest of Borneo. Trekking in the jungle for only around 10km and then hiking to the pinnacles for around 2.4km, the outsoles already coming off. I’m disappointed. I bought this shoes for long term use. At least a few hikes. Comfortable. Good grip. But just doesn’t lasts.

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