Vibram's FiveFingers Lontra made for winter running

Cold-weather running can pose a challenge in minimalist footwear. Try piling on the toe socks and you'll constrict blood flow to your feet and lose ground feel. Plus, running through snow and slush, you'll likely want more water-resistance than warm-weather shoes offer.

Lontra sole with Vibram TC-1 Dura performance rubber

The FiveFingers Lontra is Vibram's answer to "running in wet, yucky conditions," said Georgia Shaw, marketing manager at Vibram USA.

New for fall 2012, the Lontra is Vibram's first water-resistant, insulated shoe in a FiveFingers package. (Until now Vibram has recommended its Flow, with 2mm neoprene upper, for cold-weather running, in addition to water sports.)

The Lontra's upper has a multi-layer laminate with fully-taped seams and a micro pile fleece liner inside to keep feet warm and dry.

The Lontra is not technically waterproof. If you stand in a cold puddle for long enough it could eventually leak, but for winter running it should keep feet dry and comfortable.

The Lontra includes a neoprene ankle cuff/gaiter to keep out snow and debris, a reinforced hook-and-loop closure, light cleating on the sole for grip and traction, and reflective surfaces for safety at night.

"We didn't want to hinder ground feel," said Shaw of the Lontra. "People had tried piling on toe socks, but it needs to be not constricting, but be forgiving."


  • Midsole: 4mm EVA midsole for insulation from frozen surfaces
  • Outsole: TC-1 Dura for traction and durability
  • Sizes: available in men's and women's
  • Available: August 1, 2012
  • MSRP: $150

Filed under: Gear News, Outdoor Retailer


Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
January 30, 2012 at 5:34 p.m. (EST)

I just HAVE to ask ... what in Heaven's Name is THE HURRY?

Running?   Why?

I have probably hiked ThOUSANDS of MILES, over my many years.   THOUSANDS.

NEVER in a hurry.  Might miss something.

Oh, well ....    I'd better stop here .... 

                         ~ r2 ~

1,753 reviewer rep
3,956 forum posts
January 30, 2012 at 6:58 p.m. (EST)

I don't run much anymore due to bad knees, but if the Lontra's work well for those who do...more power to them.

110 reviewer rep
762 forum posts
January 30, 2012 at 9:01 p.m. (EST)

I'm a long(skate)boarder from wayyy back in the day.  I used to be a bare-footer.  I've been wondering about how the Lontra would work on a board. There's a lot to be said for independent toe movement and how it affects control. 

At age 48.8, Ive been asked "Why?" more times than I care to count. The answer to that particularly rhetorical question is ALWAYS, "Why not?" Why do any of us do what we do? Because we enjoy it.

1,711 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
January 30, 2012 at 10:20 p.m. (EST)

I would definitely be interested in getting my hands on a pair of these asap.

I am considering trying to do the 70 mile LHHT in 3 days(or less) in the spring. 

These might be perfect for that type of trip for me. I am trying to go "light and nimble." 

In regards to R2s comment....

To be blunt... Different strokes for different folks.

If everyone liked the same thing the world would be a boring and very predictable place. 

1,711 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
January 31, 2012 at 3:13 a.m. (EST)

I just noticed the August 1st release date... Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
January 31, 2012 at 6:55 a.m. (EST)

Rick-Pittsburgh said:

In regards to R2s comment....

... Different strokes for different folks.


Definitely NOT for me.

I'm too frugal and practical, as well as careful (not to risk turning an ankle, etc.).

Brings to mind the old metaphor of the "Tortoise And The Hare".

                               ~ r2 ~

60 reviewer rep
116 forum posts
January 31, 2012 at 9:13 a.m. (EST)

Seems like someone has frugally and practically, as well as carefully managed to show their head is in their arss.  (at risk of turning their neck, etc.).

Brings to mind the "open mouth and inserted foot" metaphor.

32 reviewer rep
1 forum posts
February 24, 2012 at 5:51 p.m. (EST)


244 reviewer rep
5,377 forum posts
March 2, 2012 at 10:08 a.m. (EST)


As much trouble as I have getting my toes into my Fivefinger original sandals, how does one do it when the whole foot is covered? I always have trouble putting my toes into their proper places and thats with reaching into the top of the sandla just an inch away. I don't see how anyone puts them in when the foot is covered wholely?

1,379 reviewer rep
1,339 forum posts
April 4, 2012 at 6:01 p.m. (EDT)

Vibram's idea of 'winter running' is apparently different than mine. Froze a couple of toes a few years ago wearing -40° boots. NO WAY would I trust Fivefingers for winter wear.

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