The Hoka Mafate 4 is one of the few Hoka shoes I haven’t tried, but I was excited to try the Mafate. Mainly because I needed a new trail shoe, and it’s fun to try new shoes. I’m a big fan of the Torrent 2 and the Zinal, so I wondered how this more cushioned trail guy would compare.
Hoka Mafate 4 Quick Facts:
Weight: 13 oz
Heel to Toe Drop: 4 mm
Hoka Mafate 4 Introduction:
The Mafate is designed for runners looking for maximum cushion. It can handle ultra marathons. If you are running long or prefer more cushion, you might want to look at either the Hoka Mafate 4 or the Speedgoat 5. The Mafate features a whopping 37 mm in the heel. This is a lot of cushion, but also, if you’re not careful, it can cause you to roll an ankle. I was slightly concerned by this. Would I have issues? I prefer my road shoes to have a lot of cushion, but typically I purchase lower ton the ground trail shoes.
Hoka Mafate 4 Fit:
I haven’t tried previous versions of the Mafate, but I’ve heard the upper has been drastically improved. The Mafate was known to be slightly narrow with a more narrow toe box. This year, the Hoka Mafate 4 is much wider, and the toe box is far more accommodating.
The Hoka Mafate 4 has welded overlays, and you don’t feel as though you’re annoyed or the upper is rubbing in the wrong places. The heel cup is reinforced and soft, and the tongue is much softer too.
I firmly believe that the best running shoe uppers disappear off your feet, and the Hoka Mafate 4 does just that. Nothing rubs or bothers my feet in any way; even after a 10-hour hike-run, my feet feel great. I am a huge fan.
Usually, I wear between a women’s size 10-11 wide in running shoes, and the 10.5 in the Hoka Mafate 4 fits well. I would say the Mafate is one of Hoka’s most true-to-size-fitting shoes.
Hoka Mafate 4 Ride:
Throughout the years, Hoka has trended towards creating extremely durable outsoles that provide plenty of traction. Most people don’t realize that Hoka started as a trail running brand, and their shoes are still very good for that. The Mafate is designed to conquer the most challenging and longest courses.
Durability and Traction: As you might guess, the Hoka Mafate 4 has some of the best of any trail shoe I’ve found. The high abrasion rubber allows you to maintain traction without fear. I’ve used them on many slick surfaces and stream crossings with no issues. They do get a little heavier than I prefer in muddy and wet conditions, but not enough that I feel that inhibits my running.
Durability-wise, I’ve put about 100 miles on them, and I expect they’ll last a full 400. Over the past several years, Hoka has progressed towards creating more durable and well-lugged outsoles for its trail shoes.
The midsole of the Hoka Mafate 4 uses Hoka’s special EVA, which is 30% softer than other running brand foams. It truly feels like a pillow on your feet. The Mafate was one of the first-ever high-cushion trail shoes. It’s stuck around this long, so it must be good.
I was curious if you would *truly* enjoy the ride of the Hoka Mafate 4. I am someone who likes a lower-to-the-ground, less stack-height trail shoe. I don’t usually prefer something with more cushion and stack height because I feel like I may roll an ankle.
I enjoy running in the Mafate 4 much more than I thought. The extra cushion means I feel great after long trail runs. I don’t worry about my feet being sore or hurting. I’ve also used it for some of my most extended trail adventures including San Gorgonio peak. My feet felt great the entire time (even after 10 hours on my feet).
Hoka Mafate 4 Conclision:
The Mafate 4 is an excellent shoe, and I am a huge fan. It can handle most any type of trail. If you prefer more cushion or are running long distances, you might enjoy the Hoka Mafate 4. If you’ve thought, I like the Speedgoat, but I wish I had even more cushion; it’s a great option.
Or if you’re new to trails and don’t know where to start, it’s a great option too! My only complaint is how much mud can get stuck on the shoe and how heavy they become. It’s easy to remove, but it’s a drawback. In summary, I’ll continue using the Hoka Mafate 4 for trail runs, which is a great option.
My Current Shoe Rotation:
You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.
Looking to learn more about running shoes? In my ebook, I talk about why you need a good running shoe, a shoe’s anatomy, neutral vs. stable, and even myths of running shoes.
Questions for you:
Have you tried the Hoka Mafate 4?
What is your favorite trail running shoe?