Brooks Cascadia 16

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Dougie MussonCesar PicininJuan Maria Jimenez Llorens
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Brooks Cascadia 16: Review

β€œA trail shoe that combines protection, adaptability, and comfort for diverse terrains.”

Overview


The Brooks Cascadia 16 is a trail running shoe designed for those who seek adventure on varied terrain. This shoe is part of the Brooks Cascadia family, known for its durability and stability on off-road paths.

Key Features:

  • Protection: Equipped with a Ballistic Rock Shield (a protective plate in the sole) and a DNA Loft v2 midsole, the shoe offers a balance between soft cushioning and firm protection against trail debris.
  • Adaptability: The outsole features TrailTack rubber and multidirectional lugs (protrusions on the sole for grip) for excellent traction on diverse surfaces, adapting to both wet and dry conditions.
  • Comfort: With additional cushioning in the latest iteration, the Cascadia 16 provides a comfortable ride, suitable for long distances on the trail.

The Brooks Cascadia 16 is an ideal choice for trail runners who prioritize protection and stability for their outdoor pursuits. Its updated design offers a more adaptable and comfortable experience, making it a strong contender in the lineup of Brooks products.

According to our analysis of reviews from experts around the world, it averages a review score of 74%. This puts it in the lowest rated 20% of comparable running shoes.

Verdict

The consensus on the Brooks Cascadia 16


The Brooks Cascadia 16 has made a significant comeback with its 16th iteration, offering a blend of protection, stability, and comfort that trail runners have come to expect from the Cascadia line. The shoe's updated DNA Loft v2 midsole and Ballistic Rock Shield provide a protective yet softer ride, suitable for long distances on technical trails. While the shoe may not be the most responsive or lightest on the market, its durability and traction on various terrains make it a reliable choice for moderate to challenging trails. The Cascadia 16 is not without its drawbacks, as some runners may find it too firm or struggle with achieving a secure lockdown. However, for those seeking a protective and stable trail shoe, the Cascadia 16 is a solid option. Overall, the Brooks Cascadia 16 is a well-rounded trail shoe that offers a dependable performance for runners exploring the great outdoors.

Updates to Brooks Cascadia 16


The Brooks Cascadia 16 introduces several updates from its predecessor, the Brooks Cascadia 15. Notable improvements include a softer and lighter DNA Loft v2 midsole, a more flexible and adaptable outsole, and a roomier fit. These enhancements contribute to a more comfortable and versatile trail running experience, positioning the Cascadia 16 as a significant evolution within the Brooks Cascadia line.

Comparable Shoes


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The Brooks Cascadia 16 and the Saucony Peregrine 11 are both trail running shoes designed for rugged terrain. The Peregrine 11 offers a more responsive ride with a lower heel-to-toe drop, making it a better choice for runners seeking a closer ground feel and agility. In contrast, the Cascadia 16 provides a more protective and stable platform, ideal for those who prioritize long-distance comfort and durability on technical trails.

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The Brooks Cascadia 16 and the La Sportiva Bushido II are both trail running shoes, but they serve different types of runners. The Bushido II is known for its aggressive outsole and precise fit, making it a top choice for technical mountain running where grip and foot control are crucial. The Cascadia 16 offers a more cushioned and stable ride, better suited for long-distance runs on a mix of trail conditions.

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The Brooks Cascadia 16 and the Hoka Challenger ATR 6 cater to trail runners with different preferences. The Challenger ATR 6 features Hoka's signature cushioning, offering a plush and soft ride, which may appeal to runners looking for maximum comfort. The Cascadia 16, on the other hand, has a firmer and more protective midsole, suited for runners who require stability and protection on varied terrain.

Special versions of Brooks Cascadia 16


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The Brooks Cascadia 16 GTX is a special version of the standard Cascadia 16, featuring a waterproof Gore-Tex upper for added protection against wet conditions. While maintaining the core characteristics of the original model, the GTX version offers runners the added benefit of keeping their feet dry during runs through streams or in rainy weather. The trade-off for this waterproofing is a stiffer and less breathable upper, making the Cascadia 16 GTX an excellent option for those who prioritize water resistance on the trails.

6 Brooks Cascadia 16 Pros & Cons


3 Pros

The Brooks Cascadia 16 offers excellent protection against trail debris, ensuring a safe and comfortable run on rugged terrain.
With its TrailTack rubber outsole and deep lugs, the shoe provides dependable traction on a variety of surfaces, from rocky paths to muddy trails.
The Cascadia 16 is highly durable, with a robust construction that withstands the demands of trail running and maintains its integrity over time.

3 Cons

Some runners may find the Brooks Cascadia 16 too firm, preferring a shoe with a softer, more cushioned ride.
The shoe's responsiveness is not its strongest suit, as it prioritizes protection and stability over a springy, energetic feel.
The fit of the Cascadia 16 may not provide a secure lockdown for all runners, particularly those with narrow feet who may experience slippage.

In Depth


Upper

The Brooks Cascadia 16 features a mono-mesh upper (a single-layer mesh) that provides breathability and a roomy fit, accommodating a range of foot shapes. While the upper is praised for its durability and quick-drying capabilities, some runners may find it too spacious, particularly those with narrow feet. The shoe's design aims to offer a balance between structure and adaptability, ensuring protection and comfort during trail runs.

Midsole

The midsole of the Brooks Cascadia 16 is a highlight, with the introduction of the DNA Loft v2 foam. This new compound is designed to be 5% softer and 20% lighter than its predecessor, offering a cushioned yet firm ride. The presence of a Ballistic Rock Shield adds to the shoe's protective qualities, shielding the foot from sharp trail debris while maintaining a degree of flexibility.

Outsole

The outsole of the Cascadia 16 is equipped with TrailTack rubber and chevron-shaped lugs that provide excellent traction across a variety of surfaces. The outsole's design allows for better mud shedding and grip on both wet and dry terrain, making the shoe versatile and reliable for trail runners.

Size/fit

The Brooks Cascadia 16 offers a fit that caters to runners with standard or wide feet, thanks to its roomier forefoot and heel. The shoe runs true to size, but the fit may not be as precise for those with narrower feet. The heel cup and collar are designed to cradle the heel, though some may experience discomfort or require additional adjustments for a secure fit.

Comfort

Comfort is a strong suit of the Brooks Cascadia 16, with its updated midsole providing a softer and more comfortable ride. The shoe's ample cushioning is ideal for long trail runs, and the padded tongue and collar enhance the overall comfort level. Despite its protective nature, the shoe manages to offer a comfortable experience without compromising on trail performance.

Cushioning

The cushioning of the Cascadia 16 is characterized by the DNA Loft v2 foam, which delivers a balance of softness and support. The shoe's cushioning is neither too firm nor overly plush, providing a neutral and comfortable feel that is well-suited for trail running.

Breathability

Breathability is addressed in the Cascadia 16 with a mono-mesh upper that allows for air circulation, helping to keep the feet cool and dry. However, the protective TPU film covering parts of the upper may reduce breathability to some extent, potentially leading to a warmer feel during runs.

Stability

Stability is a hallmark of the Brooks Cascadia 16, with its wide platform and neutral arch support contributing to a stable ride on uneven terrain. The shoe's design, including the stiff midsole and adaptive outsole, ensures a secure and balanced experience on the trails.

Durability

Durability is a standout feature of the Cascadia 16, with its robust construction and high-quality materials built to withstand the demands of trail running. The shoe shows little signs of wear and tear even after extensive use, making it a durable choice for runners who frequent rugged trails.

Grip

The grip of the Cascadia 16 is commendable, with its TrailTack rubber outsole and deep lugs providing reliable traction on a range of surfaces. The shoe performs well on both technical and soft terrain, offering confidence-inspiring grip for trail runners.

Flex

Flexibility in the Cascadia 16 is moderate, with a slight flex in the forefoot allowing for some natural movement. While the shoe leans towards the rigid side, the flexibility is sufficient for trail running and navigating through varied landscapes.

Who should buy the Brooks Cascadia 16?


The Brooks Cascadia 16 is well-suited for trail runners who value a shoe that offers a protective and stable ride on technical terrain. It's an excellent choice for those who prefer a firmer cushioning and a shoe that can handle long distances on rugged trails. The Cascadia 16 is also ideal for runners with standard to wide feet who are looking for a roomy and breathable trail shoe.

Who should not buy the Brooks Cascadia 16?


Runners who prefer a lightweight and highly responsive trail shoe may want to look elsewhere, as the Brooks Cascadia 16 is on the stiffer and heavier side. Additionally, those with narrow feet might find the fit too voluminous, and runners seeking a high level of ground feel and sensitivity may not be satisfied with the protective nature of the Cascadia 16.

Brooks Cascadia 16: What's it good for?


The Brooks Cascadia 16 is good for long-distance trail running, providing a stable and protective platform for tackling challenging terrain. It's also suitable for hiking and off-road adventures where durability and traction are key. The shoe's cushioning and comfort make it a strong contender for ultra-marathons and all-day excursions in the great outdoors.

3 Brooks Cascadia 16 FAQs


How does the Brooks Cascadia 16 perform on wet and slippery trails?

The Brooks Cascadia 16 performs well on wet and slippery trails, thanks to its TrailTack rubber outsole and multidirectional lugs that provide reliable traction. The shoe's design allows for good grip on both wet rocks and muddy paths, ensuring a confident run in various conditions.

Is the Brooks Cascadia 16 suitable for ultra-marathon distances?

Yes, the Brooks Cascadia 16 is suitable for ultra-marathon distances. Its protective features, comfortable cushioning, and durable construction make it a strong choice for runners tackling long and challenging courses.

Can the Brooks Cascadia 16 accommodate orthotic inserts?

The Brooks Cascadia 16 can accommodate orthotic inserts. The shoe's roomy interior and removable insole provide the space needed to insert custom orthotics for personalized support and comfort.

Brooks Cascadia 16 alternatives

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Brooks Cascadia 16
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productAthletes
Pro athlete users
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+4
Juan Maria Jimenez Llorens
Weight
Weight
M: 298 g
W: 269 g
Forefoot
Forefoot
21 mm
Heel to toe drop
Heel to toe drop
8 mm
6 mm
6 mm
10 mm
10 mm
Heel
Heel
29 mm
29 mm
29 mm
39 mm
38 mm
38 mm
Terrain
Terrain
MudSnow/iceTrail
MudSnow/iceTrailMudSnow/iceTrailMudRoadSnow/iceMudRoadSnow/iceMudRoadSnow/ice
Usages
Usages
RacingSpeed training
RacingSpeed trainingRacingSpeed trainingDaily runningRacingSpeed trainingDaily runningRacingSpeed trainingDaily runningRacingSpeed training
Brand
Brand
Brooks
AltraInov-8BrooksBrooksBrooks
Shoe Type
Shoe Type
BarefootBreathableComfortableLightweightLow dropMaximalistMinimalistZero dropBarefootBreathableComfortableLightweightLow dropMaximalistMinimalistZero dropBarefootBreathableComfortableLightweightLow dropMaximalistMinimalistZero dropBarefootBreathableComfortableLightweightLow dropMaximalistMinimalistZero dropBarefootBreathableComfortableLightweightLow dropMaximalistMinimalistZero drop
Breathable
Breathable
Techs
Techs
Vibram
Environmental Characteristics
Environmental Characteristics
SustainableSustainableVegan β“‹SustainableSustainableVegan β“‹Sustainable
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Brooks Cascadia 16: what the experts say (7 reviews)

Brooks Cascadia 16: 6 Expert video reviews

Brooks Cascadia 16 characteristics and specifications

Specificationsvs Average
Model
16
Released
Aug 2021
Measurements
Weight
M: 298 g
W: 269 g
Heel to toe drop
8 mm
Heel
29 mm
Forefoot
21 mm

6 pro athletes who've used Brooks Cascadia 16

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AuthorTom Green
Tom is the founder of geerly. Based in West London, he found his passion for running in his mid-30s. He’s best at longer distances, and is a regular at the London Marathon, where he's edging closer to sub-2.40. He started geerly because he found it frustrating when shopping for running shoes spending ages trying to find the best deal in his size, and wading through verbose, waffling reviews clearly designed to appeal to search engines rather than be helpful to users. For geerly he's passionate about writing reviews that get straight to the point, and helping runners find the right gear at the best price.
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πŸ“Š Stats by geerly.com πŸ‘Ÿ πŸ•’ Official time: 00:22:45 | Course PB 🚨 🏁 Overall position: 35/549 🚹 Gender position: 21/299 🎯 Age grade: 61%