Altra Mont Blanc vs. Olympus (2022)
We’re not gonna lie, these 2 models of the Altra brand are very close for an identical objective: long-distance trail running.
Beyond their common characteristics (a wide and zero-drop platform, and a spacious toe box), some notable differences come to distinguish them and give the advantage to one or the other according to the criteria.
For starters, regarding the midsole, the advantage goes clearly to the Altra Mont Blanc. The EGO MAX foam performs better than the EVA A-Bound in terms of responsiveness and comfort. Trail runners who have tested the 2 shoes felt like they were growing wings with the latest model of the brand! Note that the Olympus 4’s midsole is a few millimeters thicker, but it doesn’t feel more cushioned.
Next, the upper paints a more complicated picture. The Mont Blanc is lighter, especially with its ultra-breathable engineered mesh and slightly narrower platform. However, the Olympus 4, takes the lead in terms of foot lockdown and support.
On paper, the Olympus 4 also seems to have the edge in terms of durability. The MegaGrip Vibram rubber Lite Base version of the Mont Blanc is certainly lighter than the classic version, but perhaps less durable over time. To be checked in a few months!
Finally, the grip is better on the Mont Blanc model according to testers.
Altra Mont Blanc or Olympus 4: which one to choose?
As in many situations in life, it all depends! With a lighter weight and a more responsive bounce, the Altra Mont Blanc is clearly a shoe for more fun and faster running (at least the kind of speed that ultramarathon running allows). So it will suit you better than the Olympus 4 if that’s your ambition.
If you know you need extra support in terms of lockdown, then the Altra Olympus 4 seems to be the better option.
✔ A pleasant and flexible ride
✔ Remarkable comfort
✔ Excellent grip on various terrains
✔ Lightweight and breathable upper
❌ A complicated adjustment to find
✔ Maximalist and springy cushioning
✔ Comfortable upper with ample lockdown and spacious toe box
✔ Sturdy model
✔ Effective traction on intermediate level trails
❌ High price
❌ May be insufficient on very technical trails
Altra Mont Blanc
Altra Olympus 4
|Drop||0 mm||0 mm|
|Heel stack height||32 mm||33 mm|
|Forefoot stack height||32 mm||33 mm|
|Features||Gaiter attachment point||Gaiter attachment point, Toe cap, Zero drop|
|Weight (men)||272 g/9.6 oz||318 g/11.2 oz|
|Weight (women)||238 g/8.4 oz||289 g/10.2 oz|
|Outsole||Vibram LiteBase||Vibram MegaGrip|
|Midsole||EgoMax, Natural Ride System (NRS)||A-Bound, Inner Flex, FOOTSHAPE, Balanced Cushioning|
|Upper||Engineered mesh||Engineered mesh, Premium Tongue, gaiter attachment system|
|Softness (1-5)||4 – Soft||4 – Soft|
|Bounce (1-5)||4 – Bouncy||4 – Bouncy|
|Speed||Moderate, fast||Slow, moderate|
|Distance||Mid, long, marathon||Mid, long|
|Workout||Daily runs||Daily runs, recovery|