I love the idea of a shoe that can take me from road to trail and back again and the description of these seemed to fit the bill!
Ideal for any kind of surface from road to forest trails, the shoe will quickly become one of your outdoor wardrobe essentials.salomon.com
I tried the HOKA Challenger – review here – last year and was really impressed so my hopes were these would be similar – a shoe that can handle a little of both. I wasn’t expecting it to grip in deep mud or scramble up rocks but offer a little extra grip! They seemed like a bargain, so thought I’d give them a try.
Out of the box my first impressions are they were super light and didn’t have super aggressive lugs (as you’d expect). The lacing system I have never used before and looked pretty smart, so I was happy to be able to give it a go.
I’m a size 6 in regular shoes and always buy 7 now in running shoes – these were purchased in a 7 and I was very happy I did so, as my first impressions were they are a snug fit. Not uncomfortable, and I think it’s supposed to feel this way.
Fits like a sock with soft materials and no pressure points – you’ll almost forget you’re wearing it.salomon.com
There was enough room in the toe box and my excitement with the quick lacing was probably a bit over the top… but they fit really nicely. So on to giving them a try!
First wear thoughts were good – I went on paved paths, grass, wet grass, slightly muddy bits (but nothing extreme) and balanced my way across mud on a log. I have to say, I was very impressed. The shoes have nice grip on these non technical / easy off road sections, but also don’t feel too hard on my feet on the road and paved sections. They felt like good value for money, I managed to pick some up relatively cheaply (for running shoes, haha!) at roughly £66.
Moving on to the GTX part… yess love a GTX shoe! I haven’t tried them in a downpour, but kept my feet nice and dry in puddles and wet grass. I have Cascadia GTX – review here – I would probably use instead of these in hard rain on the trails, as they are a 100% trail shoe.
After wearing these for a longer outing, I found there was a slight gap around my ankles after the initial snugness. It hasn’t caused any rubbing or blisters and isn’t annoying – but it was noticeable to the initial fit. Perhaps I hadn’t done them up tight enough initially…
The lacing system meant they felt really well done up though compared to some of my other shoes… I think I’m going to have to do my other shoes up better in future! I didn’t stop and adjust at all. On the longer outing I didn’t feel any lack of confidence or stability on the traily-er (is that a word…) bits, and they were cushioned enough for the pavement.
I’m really happy I took a bit of a chance on these not having owned Salomon running shoes before, only hiking boots, and I think they will be fantastic for mix terrain running. I will also use them for walking – on the days where I don’t need my big hiking boots these are a light, comfortable alternative. And waterproof sooooo. Yes!