Feline Grace

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sportiva-wildcat_22399

Although I have some years before “cougar” status, I purred for the new LA SPORTIVA WILDCAT ($100, sportiva.com). This lightweight mountain runner is perfect for quick approaches, cross-training trail runs, and — my favorite — jogging into the Flatirons for a pre-work scramble. The FriXion X-Axis sole held fast on talus and kitty-litter scree, and the solid heel, supportive, single-density midsole, and a durable TrailCage mesh upper kept life stable and comfy — i.e., no hot spots, even on break-in runs. If your shtick is mostly long, fast runs, you might prefer La Sportiva’s Crosslites, but for a sturdy, versatile ride, the Wildcat’s the thing. Available in men’s and women’s versions.

—Kristin Bjornsen