The problem with Altra is that they are so completely different from other shoes. I have tried them and I couldn´t run in them. The low drop killed my achilles and the ridiculously wide toebox felt very akward when I was trying to run fast. I guess she must have tried them and liked them. You just don´t switch to Altra for the money.
Altra was also recently acquired by VF corporation (north face) which recently relocated to Denver.