Altra Lone Peak 8 Review – What’s changed from 7 vs. 8

Ever wondered why the Altra Lone Peak series keeps topping the charts? The Lone Peak 8 sticks to what works, keeping the relaxed fit and smooth ride we all love from the Lone Peak 7, but with just a few tweaks for the better. It's your go-to for those long-distance adventures, ensuring comfort every step of the way. If you're all about embracing the outdoors without missing a beat in performance and comfort, the Lone Peak 8 is here for you!

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Weight

10.7oz / 303g for men’s US9

Stack height

25mm
Zero Drop

Made for

Long runs where comfort is key
Dry, mildly wet conditions

Fit

High volume
Average midfoot
Wide toe box
True to size

Feel

Protective under foot
Flexible for a shoe of this stack height
Relaxed, comfortable fit

Pros & Cons

+ Great toe box width and depth
+ Comfortable for long runs
– Midfoot can be narrow
– The heel is a little sloppy.


I was surprised when I heard the Lone Peak was getting an update back at The Running Event in Austin. It’d been just over a year since we saw the Lone Peak 7, and it wasn’t a bad shoe. 

So, what was updated? 

Spoiler: not too much. But their changes somehow made it a runnable shoe for me, and maybe it will for you!?

I’m even considering it as my “cushioned” trail shoe of choice! Especially for long-distance efforts. 

So, let’s dive into the review and see if the Altra Lone Peak 8 could be for you! I’ll go through the shoe’s fit, feel, and durability. Finally, I’ll help you decide whether the Lone Peak 8 is the shoe for you and, if not, where you should look next!

First up, the fit! 

Which Altra Shoe is for you?

Take a quick 4-question quiz to identify the perfect Altra running shoe for your feet! You'll get both road and trail options based on your answers!


Fit

Some will know the Lone Peak as the wide option in the Altra lineup. And while that’s somewhat true, we need to be more specific. 

It’s wide in the toe box, average wide in the midfoot, and roomy in the heel. 

But if you’re a runner requiring a little extra room, the Lone Peak 8 has a wide option! So there’s likely an option that’d work for you!

altra lone peak 8 toes

What size to order?

For most people, I’d suggest sticking true to size. Doing so will allow a little extra room at the end of the shoe, which is necessary for running shoes because you don’t want to lose your toenails (trust me, I know). For most, it’ll mean a good fit through the midfoot and the heel, too. 

Opt for the Altra Lone Peak 8 wide option if you have a wider midfoot. If this is you, you’ll know it. Do you often find your midfoot pushing out the side shoes over the sole? Then you may need a wide. I think this would be the perfect option for me. See the picture for an example.

Is the toe box actually wide?

The toe box on the Lone Peak 8 feels more roomy than the Lone Peak 7. It’s not a huge amount, and I believe most of it is in the depth of the toe box. After running in the Superior all this time, it’s refreshing to have ample room above the toes! 

I have an average toe splay, and the toe box is more than wide enough for me. I think 70-80% of you will find the toe box width perfect. But again, if you need more space, try the Lone Peak 8 wide. 

What if you could build a more sustainable running experience by making simple tweaks that result in faster times and bigger distances…

Is the upper forgiving?

The upper construction resembles the Lone Peak 7, but some material choices have changed. And I think this is why I’ve had a much better experience in the Lone Peak 8! In the previous version, I found the midfoot caging way too stiff, and it caused pain. This time, I’ve had no such issues. So, I believe the upper is more flexible and forgiving.

Do you remember the Lone Peak 6s? The upper material looks and feels the same! They may have moved back to the same material, which is neither good nor bad for me. Both LP6 and LP7 had no upper durability issues. 

Does the heel lock in place?

I wasn’t a massive fan of the stiffer heel counter on the Lone Peak 7, and it hasn’t changed here. There’s now a tiny piece of plastic that runs low around the heel, which I don’t believe makes much of a difference, but the structure high up the heel is still stiff for a Lone Peak. 

You may find your heel slipping due to the oversized nature and stiffer construction. Weirdly, I had no heel slip up and down. Instead, my heel was rotating in the shoe when I was on uneven surfaces. It’s not a reason to dismiss the shoe, but the model is better suited to slow, mellow trails. My foot was still locked in place thanks to the midfoot lockdown.

altra lone peak 8 heel tab

Will they accommodate shallow and deep feet?

Thankfully, the Lone Peak is the one remaining “deep” shoe in the Altra lineup. So, try the Lone Peak if you find other models tight on the top of the foot. You sit deeper in the shoe, and it’ll just feel a little more comfortable. 

If your foot is shallow, I’d suggest steering clear. Instead, jump over and look at the Superior 6. It’s only 4mm less in stack height and uses the same outsole rubber as the Lone Peak.

There are different lacing options over the midfoot, as we used to see in the Lone Peak 6. This is good if you need to reduce the pressure over the top of the foot. Different lacing options make this shoe versatile, but finding the right fit for you could take time.

Merrell Vapor Glove 6 outline

Altra Lone Peak 8

Feel

I’ve enjoyed my time in the Lone Peak 8. It’s cushioned but remains flexible and unstructured. 

I could use them for a slow plod and some speed sessions if the terrain wasn’t too technical.

On dryer and snowy conditions, the traction was immense. I had 100% confidence in every foot placement. 

altra lone peak 8 plastic

How flexible is the Lone Peak?

I won’t lie; this is no barefoot shoe, but for a 25mm stack height, it still boasts a decent amount of flexibility. There’s no rocker motion to this shoe. All the forward propulsion comes from your feet and legs. And while some stiffness in the midsole from the forefoot back contributes to some “pop,” most conventional shoe wearers will not feel it. 

The Lone Peak could serve as your long-run shoe if you’re a barefoot runner like me. I was overstriding a little more than usual, but there was no unnerving rocker or toe spring that would completely mess up your running gait. 

What is the ground feel like?

Conventional shoe wearers would say there’s a lot of ground feel; barefoot runners would say there’s nearly none. I always find it difficult to answer this question regarding highly cushioned shoes. What are people referring to? There’s a massive chunk of sponge between you and the ground. So, I’d say there’s hardly any ground feel. 

I wouldn’t take the shoe on technical terrain because it’s difficult to “feel” where your foot lands. This is the same with any cushioned shoe. You don’t feel the crack in the rock due to the 25mm stack height; instead, you only notice the change in terrain when your ankle starts tipping. That’s why I like minimal shoes!

altra lone peak 8 outsole close

Does the outsole suit dryer or wet conditions?

The newer Maxtrac rubber we’ve seen on more recent Altra models does an excellent job in the dry. It’s almost as good as some Vibram options without durability. But I found myself skipping across dry rocks and not worrying about slipping one bit. 

The lugs aren’t deep, so I wouldn’t take them out in sloppy, muddy conditions. These are not British fell running shoes. They’re still made for the American West, where conditions are mostly dry. If you encounter mud, they’ll work, but not if you’re knee-deep in mud!

Are the shoes zero drop?

The Lone Peaks are still zero drop! And the footbed is nearly flat. Thank you, Altra, for not adding arch support like Topo Athletic! The footbed is almost flat, so you rely on the foot’s structure to stay supported in the shoe. 

The flat footbed will feel more comfortable for those who are flat-footed. As long as the sole is wide enough, you’ll feel no strange structure underfoot and have a great ride! 

altra lone peak 8 side wall

What type of runs are they suited to?

Because the shoe is highly cushioned, it’s perfect for longer distances. I’d always suggest a shoe lower to the ground for short distances and speed work. And saving the Lone Peak for those 1-2+ hours runs. I wish I had this option at my 100km race last year. 

Because the heel is a little sloppy, I’d suggest sticking to mellow trails. This may not be true if you have a wider heel and fill out the shoe completely, but for most, choosing a shoe a little lower to the ground and better fitting would result in a better technical terrain shoe. 

Is the upper constricting?

If your midfoot is a little wider like mine, it can feel constricted, but the new materials are forgiving. The Lone Peak 8 has found a nice balance between comfort and lockdown, meaning this is a tremendously comfortable trail shoe, much like the old days of the original Lone Peak! It also means you can get away with an average fit like me and still have a good time! 

Merrell Vapor Glove 6 outline

Altra Lone Peak 8

Durability

Altra’s have never been known to have durable shoes, and I don’t think the Lone Peak 8 will change that. 

But to make things a little sweeter, the Lone Peak is now $10 less than last year at $140, which should please some. 

There are no updates since the Lone Peak 7 that would tell me to expect a longer life out of the Lone Peak 8.

altra lone peak 8 new upper

Can the upper withstand scuffs and scrapes?

We see overlays in all the familiar places, protecting the midfoot toe box from scuffs. The midfoot overlay is a little lighter than the Lone Peak 7, but not to the detriment of the shoe. The toe cap is extended a little further around the shoe, but most of this is purely aesthetic. 

The new upper material used is sturdy and feels rip-resistant. As I said, it feels very much like the Lone Peak 6 material, and I’m pretty confident you won’t burst out the side of the shoe or find it ripping when scraping against the rocks. It’s a good choice!

How long will the outsole last?

The outsole is the weak point of the shoe. The performance of the rubber is excellent, but it’s a soft compound that will wear down quickly on hard surfaces. It kills me when I see people wearing Lone Peaks on the road! 🙂 You’ll likely want to change the shoe in under 500 miles because no tread will be left. 

altra lone peak 8 outsole heel

Is the build high quality?

Altra has come a long way since the early days! The quality is only getting better, even if some disagree. Much of the design is highly professional, with welded overlays in all the right places and high-quality stitches when needed. 

I see no defects or shoddy construction on my pair. There’s always a possibility of manufacturing issues; in that case, you should return the shoe right away, but it’s been a long time since I’ve seen poor construction from Altra.

Are there any weak points of the shoe?

The first area I expect to break down first is the outsole. As I’ve mentioned before, the soft rubber will wear pretty quickly.

The midsole will pack out pretty quickly, but you can keep running in the shoe for 100’s of miles. It may not feel like a new shoe with a bunch of life, but that’s not a huge issue. You want your feet and legs to be doing the work anyway! 

Merrell Vapor Glove 6 outline

Altra Lone Peak 8

Conclusion

Overall, I’m fairly impressed with the Lone Peak 8. It’s an 8/10, and I’m seriously considering keeping the shoe in my rotation. 

If you’ve been a Lone Peak fan in the past, you’ll still feel right at home in this update because it’s more of the same stuff you love! 

I know they’re not as wide and skater-shoe-like as they used to be, but I assure you that’s good for a serious trail shoe! 

This shoe will suit those looking for a cushioned option for longer runs and ultra races. If that’s you

But if you want more ground feel and a shoe that is better for technical terrain, 

And if you want to practice your natural barefoot gait. 

Merrell Vapor Glove 6 outline

Altra Lone Peak 8

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Nick
Nick

Nick is a UESCA-certified ultramarathon coach and avid barefoot runner, having over 5 years of experience in barefoot training and has competed in multiple ultra marathons wearing barefoot shoes. Starting his journey in the running industry over 10 years ago in New Zealand, Nick evolved from a running shoe salesperson to a passionate advocate for the transformative power of barefoot running. He believes in its potential to enhance running experiences for all and combines his unique insights from both personal achievements and professional coaching to guide and inspire the running community."

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