Brooks Cascadia 12

8.9 score
(WalkJogRun) score (8.9)/10

Our WalkJogRun score is based on 3 different factors: Editor's rating after in-depth testing. User ratings submitted on this page Overall score from the "reviewmeter" based on reviews across the web the weight of each factor is: 40% editor rating 15% user ratings 45% reviewmeter.
Editor rating: 9.4 / 10
User's rating: based on 0 user ratings
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Brooks Cascadia 12 Review Facts

The Brooks Cascadia 12 is the 12th model of an extremely popular line trail of shoes. This design features relatively few changes, at least on the outside. Brooks decided to equip the shoe with a bit more in terms of cushioning and has also given the shoe a decent bit more tread on the outsole unit. When all of the technologies that are incorporated into the design are taken into account, it makes complete sense why the shoe functions on the level that it does.

Editor's Pros & Cons
  • Roomy toe box
  • Amazing grip
  • Fits various feet widths
  • Very durable
  • Not very many colorways
  • Shallow heel cup
See How
Reviews were analyzed here:
We read, analyze and sort reviews into positive & negative categories to give you the complete picture.
What are buyers saying?

We have spent 3.5 hours analyzing a total of 483 reviews.

These reviews are then categoried into "Positive" and "Negative" feedback.

Below you will read a summary of them:

  • Great Shoes! I have rheumatoid arthritis and am on my feet all day. I usually have back and ankle pain at the end of the day but not the case with these.
  • My Brooks are great on the trails. I like the support and the traction.
  • I was tired of getting blisters while backpacking so I purchase Brooks Cascadia 12 after doing some reach. Problem solved.
  • No issues walking on sharp surfaces or rocks with these shoes. Love how lightweight they are and they drain and dry fast when wet.
  • We hike a lot and I love these shoes because they fit and feel great. Awesome grip on slippery surfaces.
  • I am a nurse and I wear these during my long hour shifts. These are without a doubt the most comfortable shoes I own.
  • Brooks Cascadia 12 provide absolute comfort. My legs and ankles are stable walking and running over various terrains.
  • Well made and durable.
  • I do a lot of walking in my Brooks Cascadia 12 shoes without any problems.
  • A friend recommended these and I am glad I listened. Love how comfortable they are and love the look.
  • These have held up well for me during running on the trails.
  • I am a Brooks fan because the Cascadia 12 fit great.
  • My doctor recommended this shoes to help in my recovery from toe pain.These shoes offer wonderful cushioning and stability.
  • I am still walking after several foot surgeries and it’s because of these shoes.
  • My back pain ceased after wearing these shoes. I believe it had to do with the shock absorption. Worth the investment.
  • I am a fan of the Cascadia 9, 10 and 12. But the 12s seem to have nice improvements. I like that this shoe can be used for hiking and running.
  • Beautiful, lightweight and great arch support.
  • These shoes are dependable. I would go as for as saying they are work horses. And when they do finally wear out I will be buying another pair.
  • These shoes felt great out of the box.
  • The Brooks Cascadia 12s do an awesome job protecting my foot from tough terrains. No break in time needed and I ran about 10 miles out of the box.
  • Too Narrow for some users
  • Runs small
The Reviewmeter shows you an overall score that you can easily refer to. The highest rating is 10 (100% positive feedback)
Of the 483 reviews we found in total, 16% were negative, and 84% were positive.


The outsole of the shoe has several properties which allow the Brooks Cascadia to function as the outstanding trail shoe that it does. The shoe features lugs on the sole unit that aid in the shoe’s ability to gain traction on various surfaces. On top of that, the Cascadia has a sole unit fashioned from hardened rubber, which acts as a compliment to the patterning on the outsole. To keep materials from entering the sole unit of the shoe, Brooks has fitted the Cascadia with a plastic plate on the outsole of the shoe; it acts as a protector for the sole unit.


The midsole on the Brooks Cascadia has been designed out of DNA foam. This material works in the same way as EVA foam in that it provides the wearer with a very high level of cushioning while also remaining relatively firm. The midsole on this shoe is very thick which allows the shoe to provide a high level of support to the wearer on top of the comfort that the material itself provides. Brooks has taken great care to fit the midsole of the shoe with flex grooves which enable it to provide the wearer with a high level of flexibility during use.


The upper on the Brooks Cascadia, like most shoes is mainly designed from a mesh material. Since the shoe’s design is mainly that of a trail shoe, it has been given several overlays which make it relatively thick. Also, to this effect, the shoe has a decent level of stability due to the overlay that was used in the designing process. The Cascadia’s upper is relatively wide, which enables the shoe to fit various foot sizes as well. The snug design of the upper also allows the shoe to provide a very high level of protection to the wearer’s in that it prevents the wearer’s foot from moving around constantly.


Now, seeing as the shoe is designed for the more heavy-duty terrains, it has been given a high amount of cushioning. The cushioning in the shoe then translates into a decent amount of weight for the shoe overall. The sole unit of the shoe is relatively thick and is designed from a hardened rubber material which, by itself adds a decent number of ozs to the shoe’s figure. The upper on the shoe features a decent number of layers, to prevent movement and damage to the wearer’s foot, something that also adds a decent amount of weight to the shoe.


Now, despite popular belief, the Brooks Cascadia is relatively breathable. The mesh makeup of the upper of the shoe, despite the layers, allows a high amount of air circulation to take place in the shoe. The design of the shoe keeps it from becoming overly hot in certain whether conditions and vice-versa in the opposite weather conditions. Overall, the design of the shoe and the use of the mesh throughout greatly improves the shoe wear-ability in various conditions; something that you don’t see every day in trail shoes.


The shoe, being design with highly cushioning materials provides the wearer with a high level of comfort during use. The upper of the shoe is designed from a mesh material and has various overlay throughout. The mesh material itself gives the shoe a comforting effect while the overlay prevents the shoe from moving around while on foot. The sole unit of the shoe features DNA foam, which gives the shoe a firm, yet pillow-like effect; this allows the shoe to fit to the shape of the foot without hindering the ride experienced.


Trail shoes are known for being extremely durable. The Brooks Cascadia is not very different. The shoe was given a design that incorporates various materials that allow it to keep with strenuous terrains without taking a high level of damage while doing so. The sole unit of the shoe, mainly the midsole is extremely durable; it lasts for upwards of 500 miles without losing its bounce. The outsole of the shoe also has this effect; it keeps up with the midsole and can function in a variety of weather conditions without breaking down. The upper of the shoe has various overlays which function to protect the mesh material that makes up most of the design.


As mentioned earlier, the Brooks Cascadia has several features that enable it to provide a high level of protection to the foot of the wearer. The design of the shoe features an upper that has various protective layers; the layers on the upper of the shoe allow the shoe to relatively stable, preventing movement and adds a bit of stopping power to the shoe. The sole unit of the shoe is very thick and gives the shoe the ability to stop the various objects that are present of terrains such as rocks and the like; it features a hardened plate which only adds to this feature of the sole unit of the shoe.


Now, the sole unit of the shoe, while being extremely comfortable, doesn’t have the high level of bounce that many runners are accustomed to. The DNA foam in the midsole is relatively firm, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing; it takes away from the energy that is transferred to and from the sole unit of the shoe. The outsole on the Brooks Cascadia also allows the shoe to make tight turns which adds to the shoe’s overall responsiveness. The upper and the snug fit that it provides, reduces the movement that the wearer feels in the shoe while being worn, also enhancing the responsiveness level of the shoe.


The materials used in both the sole unit and the upper of the shoe provide the shoe with a decent level of support while being worn. The upper of the shoe has various synthetic overlays which keep the wearer’s foot trapped snuggly in place and provide support for the midfoot and outer curves of the wearer’s foot. The sole unit is also relatively thick; the thickness of the midsole of the shoe allows the shoe to blend with the curves of the base of the wearer’s foot allowing the shoe to provide support for that area of the foot.


The Brooks Cascadia is designed for the more strenuous terrains such as trails. The shoe has been given a somewhat bulky design due to the various coverings and added padding in the sole unit. The sole unit of the shoe has a thick midsole and a lug-infused midsole which allow the shoe a high level of functionality on surfaces such as those. The outsole of the shoe is really what allows the shoe to handle the rural trail terrain; the lug pattern is highly durable and can find a decent grip on the surface. The upper of the shoe has various layering’s which protect the upper of the shoe from the effects of the trail terrain; this is only enhanced by Brooks use of guards throughout the shoe.


Now, for all the material and technologies used throughout the design of the shoe, would usually mean that the shoe will be somewhat higher priced than other trail shoes. Luckily that isn’t the case with the Brooks Cascadia. The shoe falls on the lower end of the spectrum regarding its price. The shoe provides the wearer with a high level of functionality as well as cushioning, which when on other shoes, usually translates into the shoe being higher priced. Brooks was able to keep the price of the shoe down, while also designing it to be very durable and comforting.


One of the best things about the sole unit of the Brooks Cascadia is that it can achieve an extremely high level of grip during use. The shoe has been fitted with lugs on the outsole of the shoe which enable it to dig into the ground with very little if any effort on the part of the wearer. The addition of the lugs on the sole unit of the also allows the shoe to work in various weather conditions as well, making the functionality of the shoe even greater. The patterning used in the formation lugs on the shoe is also part of the reason why the sole unit can achieve the level of grip that it does; they have been given a tread like patterning.


Another thing the isn’t seen very often on trail shoes is a high-level of flexibility; on the Brooks Cascadia, Brooks made sure to design a shoe that is able to bend with movements of the wearer’s foot with very little issue. The midsole of the shoe can bend so easily because of the various flex grooves that are placed throughout. The heel of the midsole of the shoe can bend relatively easily as well because of the various grooves that are placed in that area; the same goes for the toe area of the shoe. The upper, being designed from a mesh material can bend relatively easily because of the material used throughout the design of the shoe; the synthetic overlays used do nothing to take away from the materials ability to flex easily. Also, the grid pattern on the outsole of the shoe can move relatively easily because of this as well.


The upper of the shoe has various overlays which allow the shoe to provide a secure and stable fit to the wearer of the shoe. The Brooks Cascadia has been fitted with various overlays which restrict the movement of the wearer's foot, resulting in a secure and protected fit for the wearer of the shoe. The sole of the shoe is relatively wide and firm which also provides the wearer of the shoe with a decent level of security in their movements.


The Brooks Cascadia features a relatively high drop, mainly because of its use as a trail running shoe. The heel-to-toe ratio on the Brooks Cascadia is about 10 mm, relatively high for a running shoe. The design of the Brooks Cascadia has copious amounts of cushioning in the midsole, which somewhat explains the high heel to toe ratio on the shoe.

Key features

• DNA foam
• Rock plate in outsole
• Rubber lugs in outsole
• Mud guards


Overall, Brooks has done an amazing job with the Brooks Cascadia 12. Brooks has made sure to give the shoe a high level of cushioning and support throughout the sole unit; the upper has layering which restrict the movement on that part of the shoe further improving this area of the shoes design. The sole unit of the shoe has rubber lugs which enhance the comfort and longevity provided by the outsole of the shoe. Overall, Brooks did an amazing job with the design of this shoe.