Vivobarefoot Magna Lite WR SG: Hiking and Trail Running Boots

February 9, 2024Barefoot trail boot with a 7.5mm sole, slip-on water-resistant upper, and soft ground tread.

Hello, my name’s Andrew, and these are the Vivobarefoot Magna Lite WR SG (Water-Resistant Soft Ground), a lightweight barefoot boot with a slip-on vegan upper and aggressive tread for hiking and trail running.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Features Showcase Desk


One of the first barefoot shoes I ever bought was the original Vivobarefoot Primus SG and, to be honest, it was the only Vivo shoe I never liked, because the whole thing just felt kind of stiff and uncomfortable.

So I asked Vivobarefoot for a pair of the new Magna Lite WR SG’s and basically they’re the kind of shoe that makes you want to drop everything, book a trip to Europe, and enter the world’s steepest trail race.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Toebox Desk


Because the Magna Lite has a wide foot-shaped toebox with a stitched guard and water-resistant vegan upper that’s woven with rip-stop, plus reinforced lace loops, a heel strap to prevent tear-outs, and a slip-on collar.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Upper Desk

Inside the Magna Lite is lined with ribbed fabric for breathability and stretch, as well as a removable heat-reflective insole for extra warmth and padding.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Lining Desk


Underneath you’ve got a wraparound 2.5mm zero-drop sole that’s highly flexible in all directions, along with aggressive 5mm soft ground lugs that are angled for going up hills in the forefoot and down at the heel.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Tread Desk


The interesting thing about the Vivobarefoot Magna Lite SG is that even though it’s a bit thicker at 7.5mm total, the sole itself is only 2.5mm.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Voiceover Bend


So going out out for a hike on muddy ground the Magna Lite felt like having the grip of a hardcore hiking boot with the freedom of a lightweight trail shoe.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Side Trail Hike Mud

Along a swampy area the water-resistant upper did a good job of shedding mud and even survived a test dip in some icy water, although it will soak through eventually and the tongue isn’t meant for deep submersion.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Water Dip Trail Hiking

Temperature wise the Magna Lite isn’t insulated, but it was plenty warm down below freezing with a pair of Injinji merino wool toe socks and thick Smartwool’s, or some wool felt insoles for even colder days.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Walk Away Trail Heel

Trail Running

Although the Vivobarefoot markets the Magna Lite as a hiking boot, it’s one of those barefoot shoes that’s so light it just makes you want to take off running.

Unlike the leather Magna FG the vegan upper felt like wearing nothing at all and with the aggressive tread I was able to scramble up rocky slopes and down steep muddy hills without any slipping.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Vs Magna Fg Desk Toebox

Also, despite being water-resistant the Magna Lite’s upper was still thin and breathable enough for fast-paced runs, while the rip-stop fabric was nice for deflecting sharp objects, but I did find it more comfortable to wear a couple layers of socks to prevent the strap material from rubbing on my ankle.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Ripstop Upper Trail Hiking

Ok, one last thing, when I was filming the water section my foot slipped off a wet rock (bad idea with a soft ground tread) and got soaked, but I find out the WR vegan upper dries super fast and doesn’t make that “squelching” noise, like thicker, more padded shoes. Silver lining! (literally)

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Boardwalk Front Ankle Hiking


Overall the Vivobarefoot Magna Lite WR SG is a great option for anyone who wants the grip and protection of a hardcore hiking boot with the agility of a lightweight trail running shoe.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Voiceover


Because the vegan upper is wide and water-resistant, the slip-on collar is super comfortable for longer milage, and the aggressive tread provides some excellent grip on soft ground terrain, like dirt, mud, and slush.

However, the Magna Lite’s toebox may not being roomy enough for extra-wide feet, the collar material isn’t waterproof for deeper puddles, and the chevron lugs will wear down faster on hard surfaces, like rocks and roads.

Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Side Trail Running Mud


In terms of similar barefoot trail shoes…

  • Vivobarefoot Primus Trail All-Weather SG: wide toebox, water-resistant vegan upper, flexible 7.5mm sole, and soft ground tread.
  • Xero Terraflex: medium width toebox, breathable mesh upper, thicker 9.5mm sole, and soft ground tread.
  • Softstar Primal RunAmoc: extra-wide toebox, water-resistant leather upper, and optional 5mm or 9.5mm Vibram Megagrip tread.
  • Viviobarefoot Magna Lite Wr Sg Tread Heel Mud Hill Trail Running


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    Finally, if you have a question about the Vivobarefoot Magna Lite WR SG, or about barefoot shoes in general, let me know in the comments.

    Thanks for watching, catch ya next time. Peace!

    Andrew Folts

    Andrew is a writer/filmmaker who creates video guides and reviews for a community of 25K+ creative rebels on YouTube.