Brooks Mazama 2

9.3
9.3 score
[Editors rating (9.3)] = (TheGearHunt) score (9.3)/10


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Editor rating: 9.3 / 10
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Brooks Mazama 2 Review Facts

Perfect for hitting the trail, the Brooks Mazama 2 is very lightweight and incredibly breathable. There is mesh throughout. The upper is reinforced with textile and synthetic layers. The mesh keeps the feet breathing and feeling super cool.

It does have a water-resistant finish that helps the feet stay as dry as possible. A BioMoGo DNA midsole provides fantastic cushioning and bounces back with every stride. There is also a progressive roll bar that gives a natural motion throughout the feet pattern.

A full-length segmented crash pad on the bottom that heel to toe transitions with an aggressive tread. It can accommodate all types of terrain including wet terrain to keep the runner steady. The original Brooks Mazama is a favorite trail shoe because it is comfortable, fast, and light.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Affordable trail shoe
  • Grippy, sticky rubber lugs
  • Lightweight design
  • Progressive diagonal roll bar
  • Responsive BioMoGo DNA midsole cushioning
  • Segmented crash pad for a smooth heel to toe transition
  • Water-resistant overlays
Cons
  • Not great on icy terrain or slippery mud
  • Runs a half size small
Outsole

Outsole

The lightweight trail running shoes boast an outsole that has multi-directional grippy lugs. They help runners travel safely over uneven surfaces. The lugs feel semi-sticky and help grip the trail. Mazama 2 lugs have a low profile when compared to other trail running shoes.

They are not pronounced or deep as others. These sneakers don’t feel too clunky when tackling the trail. The outsole was designed to deliver a fast-paced trail run instead of a leisurely one. A segmented crash pad is featured on the Mazama 2 that customizes to the runner’s steps and provides a smooth transition from heel to toe and cushion. Independent, fully-integrated shock absorbers work together on the crash pad as runners up their stride efficiency.
Midsole

Midsole

An impressive midsole delivers both cushioning and response. BioMoGo DNA is an innovative Brooks material, engineered to adapt to the running surface and the runner’s gait, pace, and weight, to deliver the needed amount of cushioning.

The material consists of non-toxic, organic additives that biodegrade the midsole material. Twice the energy return is delivered by BioMoGo DNA material a more responsive ride is provided. A forefoot propulsion plate is included with the midsole.

It encourages more toe-off power. A progressive diagonal roll bar is another excellent midsole feature. It helps keep the runner aligned and stabilizes each step to give a more natural motion to the gait pattern.
Upper

Upper

The upper is an upgrade to the original Mazama model. It features a single layer mesh upper that is lighter in weight. The upper allows for a flexible fit and excellent breathability. The pores of the mesh upper permit air in and out of the foot chamber to maintain a dry and cool running experience.

Structural integrity and water-resistance are provided by a rubber overlay that covered the upper. The mesh upper dries relatively quickly and delivers fast drainage to keep the feet dry. At the rear and front of the sneaker is a thick layer of the overlay that protects trail debris from entering the toe area.

The tongue is gusseted and locks the shoe opening to the foot to prevent trail debris from getting into the foot chamber. Another great feature offered by the upper is a lace garage located in the tongue. Extraneous laces can be tucked into the garage to prevent them from becoming caught on or damaged by things on the trail.
Weight

Weight

Mazama 2 is relatively lightweight when compared to many trail running shoes. Often trail running sneakers are bulky on the feet because they have a thick upper, more midsole area support, and aggressive rubber lugs. The upper has been pared down a bit. It is more breathable and lightweight. The women’s version weighs approximately 8.4 ounces. The men’s version weighs about 9.4 ounces.
Breathability

Breathability

Mazama 2 is engineered to be lightweight. It is an extremely breathable sneaker for a trail running shoe. The shoe is meant to give an up-tempo running experience. Runners want their feet to breathe as they push forward with speed.

A single layer mesh permits air to efficiently exit and enter the foot chamber which earns the trail runners a high score in the breathability category. The upper does not get in the way of things and has a single layer of mesh and plenty of airflow which keeps the shoe nice and cool.
Comfort

Comfort

Mazama 2 is not a comfort shoe. It focuses on responsiveness and speed. The stiff ride increases with fatigue and distance. Some significant improvements to use the previous model doubled its comfort score.

Thanks to a mesh upper and BioMoGo DNA midsole, the Mazama 2 delivers decent comfort. The midsole reacts to the runner’s weight, the pressure applied, and speed to deliver the cushioning needed to keep from feeling like walking barefoot or running on marshmallows.

Compared to some other trail shoes, the cushioning is a relatively low amount, but the sneakers are designed for faster-paced trail runs with sufficient cushion to protect the feet but not to the degree that ground can’t be felt beneath the feet.

The single layer mesh of the upper supports the feet and permits adaptability to the shape of the foot. It has a removable insole for customized support. Another insole can be added if more cushion is desired. While it is loaded with cushioning, it is definitely for those who prefer a more responsive, more dependable, reduced running shoe on trails that they want to go fast and race.
Style

Style

The Mazama 2 is a great looking sneaker regardless of the color chosen. Rubber lugs on the outsole are not extremely aggressive. The shoes don’t shout ‘trail running shoes.’ A sleek design is due to a low profile surrounding the ankle and less cushioning than many running shoes.

Synthetic overlays give an exciting aesthetic appeal. A complaint of the previous model was an overly narrow fit it the mid and forefoot. Designers took note of the claims and created the Brooks Mazama 2.

It has a more forgiving mesh upper that accommodates a wider foot while retaining a durable, light design. The outsole and midsole have the same tooling as the original Mazama so that the new version continues to offer a nimble and responsive ride.
Durability

Durability

Thanks to the crash pad and rubber lugs on the sole, the shoes can carry a runner over miles of trails. Consumers report the outsole shows little wear after using the shoes for a while. The outsole helps keep the DNA midsole protected and safe which makes the shoe last longer.

Seamless mesh on the upper would be subject to getting caught on sharp debris, but Brooks put a synthetic overlay over the mesh that is water-resistant and helps with durability. Besides the responsiveness and lightweight feel of the shoes, other features testers liked were its durability and overall fit.

The Mazama’s solid build and sturdiness convinced testers the shoe was to be reckoned with over many miles. Brooks has once again manufactured a superior shoe. It is lightweight with the right amount of cushioning and stability.
Protection

Protection

The crash pad and rubber outsole help disperse underfoot pressure from tree roots and rocks. Heading out on a trail should not cause an issue of injury to the foot. The BioMoGo DNA midsole helps protect joints from natural jolting and jarring that occurs when trail running.

While the upper consists of a single layer of mesh material. Synthetic and water-resistant overlays enforce the upper to keep feet protected and dry. The stiff midsole provides some push through protection.

The propulsion plate serves as a rock plate. It enhances protection in the area of the forefoot. Protection on the front and top is relatively minimal due to a nearly non-existent toe bumper and the lightweight upper material.

Lack of this kind of protection is typical of speed-oriented shoes, but not for shoes in the nine to ten-ounce weight class. The upper offers almost no protection from a rock catching on the side of the foot.
Responsiveness

Responsiveness

Brooks products have a high level of responsiveness. The Mazama 2 is engineered to deliver perfectly cushioned, and fast-paced trail runs. The crash pad and multi-directional rubber lugs help spring the runner forward with each step.

A diagonal roll bar helps to achieve a smooth transition from heel to toe. The forefoot boasts a propulsion plate useful for powerful toe-offs. In cooperation with the responsive features, the midsole helps with forwarding propulsion and shock absorption.

Responsiveness is the strongest characteristics of the shoe. Energy return is phenomenal. The shoe performs well at speed, especially on slight downhill grades. Runnable climb performance is close but not on the same level. The shoes are among the best in the weight class. A minor issue is an awkward or clunky feel at slower speeds due to the shoe’s stiffness.
Support

Support

The DNA midsole provides most of the support for these shoes. It is designed to deliver the needed amount of cushioned support for every individual runner. Trail running shoes do not have overly cushy midsoles they are a bit firmer and offer a lower drop than others. These sneakers are meant to push forward at a fast pace. Synthetic overlays help reduce slippage in the foot chamber. As for arch support, the Mazama 2 offers neutral support.
Terrain

Terrain

The Mazama 2 is a trail running shoe. If worn on the road, the lugs may slow down the wearer a bit with the grip. Consumers report the shoes to work well on well-groomed and moderately technical trails.

They are not confident about how well the shoes work in muddy situations. Some say they work well and others disagree. The shoes are ideal for those traversing trails ranging from mild to moderately technical without a lot of icy conditions and deep mud.

If heading to a run or race with more technical trails having large rocks, roots, etc., treacherous mud, it is wise to sacrifice a speedy shoe such as the Mazama 2 for a shoe offering more protection.
Price

Price

Value is a metric to consider when deciding on a trail running shoe. Does the shoe perform for the price? There is a significant difference in performance among shoes that are similarly priced. Some runners cannot afford a top brand of trail shoes or don’t want to spend money on features they don’t need.

The highest value a product has for a consumer is the lowest price for the highest level of performance needed. The MSRP of the Brooks Mazama 2 is $140. Consumers can find them priced from $100 to $140 or less from retailers that sell the shoes. The shoes are in line with well-known, high-quality trail running shoes. The sneakers offer some excellent features to aid in delivering a fast-paced trail run for a reasonable price.
Traction

Traction

The shoe is designed for gripping mild and moderately technical trails with a system of grippy multi-directional lugs. The sole is engineered to help runners maneuver safely over tree roots and rocks without injury to the feet.

A semi-sticky characteristic of the outsole helps to grip surfaces and easily propel runners over them. Some users report low performance in highly slippery situations but work well otherwise in terms of traction.

When treading over soft and slippery terrain, proper traction limits fails and slips and inspires confidence. Lug density and shape are the features reviewers look at when evaluating trail running shoes. Also considered are rubber stickiness and durability in different temperatures over a variety of terrain. The outsole must stand up to various surfaces and the terrain for which they are designed.
Flexibility

Flexibility

The crash pads on the outsole are segmented to customize the runner’s touchdown. They help deliver a smooth transition from heel to toe. The crash pad flexibility works with the foot as it moves through every step from the time the heel is down to toe-off.

Mazama 2 features an updated V-Grove located in the midfoot area. It flexes deeply inward to better absorb and disperse shock impact outward than the previous model. Lightweight mesh and synthetic overlays make up the upper of the shoe. The upper works in conjunction with other parts of the sneaker to provide excellent flexibility, especially for trail running shoes.
Stability

Stability

The Mazama 2 is not a stability trail running shoe, but it offers some stability on tough road terrain. Synthetic overlays, the DNA midsole, and crash pad work together to provide stability. All the aspects are designed to aid in delivering a smooth heel to toe transition. The diagonal roll bar helps keep the gait adequately aligned to keep the runner stable.
Drop

Drop

A drop of six-mm is lower than a neutral drop. It is designed for speed. The crash pad and propulsion plate help propel the runner forward. Those two items do not work as well with a more substantial drop. With the Mazama 2, the runner feels the right amount of cushion and experiences an adequate amount of ground feel.
Key Features

Key Features

* Forefoot propulsion
* Progressive diagonal roll bar
* Responsive BioMoGo DNA midsole
* Segmented crash pad
* Semi-sticky, grippy multi-directional lugs
* Water-resistant overlays
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

The Mazama 2 is a fast-paced trail running shoe that won’t weigh down the runner. It is an aesthetically pleasing sneaker that helps propel the runner over bumpy trails, tree roots, and rocks quickly.

The lightweight upper is updated. It keeps the feet dry and breathing thanks to the quick drainage capabilities and water-resistant overlays. The outsole is designed to propel the runner over a fast-paced trail quickly and efficiently. The shoes are not meant for the leisurely trail runner. They are an excellent option for those who want to speed through trails.