Editor’s Note: This post has been updated with new picks for 2016. You can find last year’s picks on Page 2.

Winter runners are hardly a fragile breed. They’re acclimated to face-numbing winds and sub-freezing temperatures. They possess the extra fortitude needed to get outdoors during the year’s darker days. Such people require a like-minded shoe that’s able to cope with winter’s full assault. Amid everything from straight-up powder to icy rain and perpetual mud, they need shoes that grip, retain warmth stay dry. Let it be known: the following running shoes are not to be used on treadmills or indoor tracks. They are the best around for runners who are committed to racing under the chilly, dark sky.

Additional reporting by Tucker Bowe and Patrick Lapera.

Altra Lone Peak 3.0 NeoShell Low

Altra’s Lone Peak 3.0 is built for trail running, but it’s more versatile than that. This version comes with a Neoshell liner that is waterproof and breathable. Slush puddles, water and snow are no match. The aggressive outsole also allows for plenty of traction on slippery surfaces and the lug pattern is such that it doesn’t get clogged. In addition, Altra’s shoes have a uniquely shaped toe box that provides plenty of room for toe splay.

Under Armour Verge Low GTX

If your runs take you through variable terrain during the winter, UA’s Verge Low GTX is your shoe. The rubber compound on its outsole was developed with Michelin and features the same tread pattern found on the brand’s mountain bike tires. The outsole also includes a rock guard that will protect your foot from any chunks of ice or rocks that you may encounter. Top it off with a waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex liner and you’ve got a shoe that will keep you running through spring.

The North Face Ultra Endurance Gore-Tex

New to TNF’s line of running shoes, the Ultra Endurance Gore-Tex was built to take on anything that’s put in its path. It’s designed specifically for long distance runs, as its name alludes, and is supremely comfortable. It has all of the bells and whistles you’d expect from a shoe worthy of winter running, including a Vibram Megagrip sole, Gore-Tex liner, ESS Snake Plate protection for your forefoot and plenty of heel and forefoot cushioning.

Adidas Terrex Agravic GTX

While Adidas may have roots in the world of soccer, judging by the quality of the Terrex Agravic, you’d think they specialize in rugged, waterproof running shoes. They’re durable, they’re waterproof, and they’re the perfect companions for taking on the harsh and foreboding winter roads. In addition to Continental rubber on the sole, the Agravic also features the brand’s ultra-cushioning, springy Boost foam.

Salomon S-Lab XA Alpine

For the harshest of conditions, Salomon’s S-Lab XA Alpine is the way to go. It made this year’s GP100 product awards, recognizing Salomon’s commitment to innovation. The shoe features a built-in gaiter to keep out all of the muck and slush that comes with winter running. The Contagrip outsole provides plenty of traction on just about every surface and will aid in running on ultra-slick winter roads.

3 Running Kits for Winter


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