13 Of The Best Trail Running Shoes – A Guide for Men and Women

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Best Trail Running Shoes

Trail events like running, hiking, etc. have been growing popular in the last few years specifically because it is an ideal way to socialize and spend your Sundays.

These hiking and trailing activities help you gain mental peace and solitude.

The terrain during these activities is not usually plain, rather it is full of rocks, pebbles, and jumps. Not wearing proper shoes can result in severe injuries.

Studies show that ankle and knee joints are adversely affected when proper support is not given.

Ideally, you need a lightweight, flexible and waterproof shoe that protects your ankle and foot from uneven terrain.

Of course, the easiest thing to do is go to a nearby store and find the ones that fit you best. However, for trailing you can’t just rely on any shoe. We have shortlisted the best trail running shoes for men and women.

First, take a look at the men’s collection and then we’ll move on to the women’s section.

Top 5 Best Trail Running Shoes (Summary)

 

Image Product Details  
Salomon Men's Speedcross 3-M, Slate Black/Deep Blue, 10.5 D US Lightweight and comfortableSalomon
  • Have mudguards
  • Dual-density EVA midsole
  • Rubber outsoles
adidas Men's Rockadia M Trail Running Shoe, Dark Grey/White/Electricity, 14 M US InexpensiveAdidas
  • Fit snugly
  • Fit perfectly even when new
  • The cushioned rubber outsole
New Balance Men's 690 V2 Trail Running Shoe, Green/Black, 9.5 D US Very pocket-friendlyNew Balance
  • Lightweight shoes
  • Breathable, resists odor
  • The sole can be used on rugged landscapes
Saucony Women's Grid Excursion TR9 Trail Running Shoe, Pink/Grey/Citron, 7.5 M US Saucony
  • Easily wearable
  • Strong heel grip
  • Excellent toe box
Reebok Women's Ridgerider Trail 2.0 Track Shoe, Ironstone/Seaside Grey/Coal/Skull Grey/Black/Silver/Pewter, 7 M US Reebok
  • Maximum control and stability
  • Good traction for dry / wet surfaces
  • Protective underfoot

For more detailed and complete product reviews on benefits and features, keep reading.

6 Best Trail Running Shoes for Men

1. Salomon Men's Speedcross 3

A great and comfortable trail running shoe for men. Salomon running shoes are lightweight and give you the speed you want. They use the imported quality synthetic material. They are a perfect trail running shoe with a water-resistant upper section. This is beneficial in rainy conditions. With the anti-debris upper mesh, it keeps your shoes free of catching any stones and dirt.

The sensifit technology completely hugs your feet from midsole to the lace system. This gives you the stability and great support. They have polyester laces which tighten firmly. The Quicklace technology has frictionless lace eyelets. Their 3D open stretch mesh does an awesome job at keeping your feet breathable and sweat free. The ortholite insole of synthetic material creates a better environment for your feet. So, get the ultimate grip for an attractive price.

Salomon Men's Speedcross 3-M, Slate Black/Deep Blue, 10.5 D US

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Pros

  • Have mudguards.
  • Rubber outsoles and toe caps which give the best grip.
  • Dual-density EVA midsole and heel cup.
  • Lightweight and comfortable.

Cons

  • Not good for wider feet.

2. Merrell Men's Vapor Glove 2

Slim looking and comfortable trail running shoes for men by Merrell. These shoes are great to have with you on your daily running routine. They have the upper mesh of TPU material that helps to keep the moisture and sweat out while you run. These shoes have antimicrobial agents. They resist the production of any odor in the shoes thus keeping them clean.

These shoes have imported quality rubber soles. This gives you the best grip on slippery surfaces as well as on slopes. They have a unique look with their low profile design. The lace-up vamp and pull tab at the corner is hassle-free. What’s more, they have a Vibram outsole. This thing gives better traction and support as you run at high speeds. Available in a variety of colors, get the pair that you want today to begin a safer run tomorrow.

Merrell Men's Vapor Glove 2 Trail Running Shoe, Black/Castle Rock, 11 M US

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Pros

  • Very comfortable
  • Lightweight
  • The sole gives the best traction on smooth roads and trails
  • The mesh dries quickly

Cons

  • A little tight around the toe
  • The sole is very thin

3. Adidas Men's Rockadia

From a renowned company in manufacturing running shoes, Adidas running shoes are great for daily runners. They are made with a synthetic textile material. The rubber soles give you the maximum traction on all types of surfaces. The shaft measures low-top from the arch. They have the upper mesh thus keeping your feet dry.

What’s more, their lace system gives the best support and cradles your feet. This helps in an efficient movement. The synthetic and textile overlays add further stability. To give the grip required for trail running, their high-quality rubber sole, making them a good choice as trail running shoes for men.

They are available in a number of color combinations for an amazing price. They also feature a rubber guard on the toe that gives the support while running and even when hiking. Go out and buy them today to have a better experience of running.

adidas Men's Rockadia M Trail Running Shoe, Dark Grey/White/Electricity, 14 M US

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Pros

  • Fit perfectly even when new
  • The cushioned rubber outsole gives a good amount of bounce
  • Fit snugly and their multi-textured tread gives good traction
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • The size may be an issue for some
  • Arch support is not very comfortable

4. ASICS Men's Gel-scram 3

ASICS is a Japanese company that believes in “A sound mind in a sound body” and that is what they have delivered with these running shoes. They are built for professionals that are looking for performance and functionality.

The shoes are made of a rubber sole and a gel cushioning system. This system helps against shock during impact while running. This protects the bones of the foot. Furthermore, the outsole is made to function on all types of terrain. It has reversed lugs that are made for running on trails and provide uphill and downhill traction.

It is a low top shoe that is available in five different colors and comes with a removable sock liner.

ASICS Men's Gel-Scram 3 Trail Runner, Carbon/Black/Green Gecko, 11.5 M US

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Pros

  • Gel cushioning system helps against shock and protects the foot from impact
  • Outsole functions on all types of terrain
  • Breathable, prevents odor

Cons

  • Users complained that the outer sole came off after only a few weeks of usage.

5. New Balance Men's MT690v2

The New Balance Men’s MT690v2 is a dual shoe. It is made for those who are professional athletes and those who run on trails. The sole is therefore such that it caters to use on the road and on muddy tracks, uphill and downhill.

It also has a reinforced toe tip to reduce the constant impact the toes are exposed to when one is running. They are made out of fabric and synthetic material and are waterproof. It is a low top shoe that comes in several colors.

New Balance Men's 690 V2 Trail Running Shoe, Green/Black, 9.5 D US

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Pros

  • Lightweight shoes
  • Very pocket-friendly
  • Toe support protects against any damage
  • Can be worn for long period of time
  • The sole can be used on rugged landscapes
  • Breathable, resists odor

Cons

  • Some users complained that the front of the shoe is a tight fit

6. Saucony Men's Grid Caliber TR

These sleek and stylish shoes by Saucony provide the best trail experience. Saucony Caliber TR has an aggressive outsole that makes running on uneven terrains easier. It has a long-term durability and is not very hard on the pocket either.

These shoes have a neutral arch support that protects the foot from twisting while running on uneven terrains. The rubber outsole provides the necessary traction and prevents slipping. The overlay hot melt and the sock liner make the shoe very comfortable.

The efficiency of the runner is increased due to the lightweight disposition of the shoe. The upper part of the shoe is made of synthetic but breathable material. This prevents stickiness and slipperiness due to the sweating of feet. Moreover, it prevents hot spots from forming.

The design of the shoe is made to complement the runner and gives him complete support. The sock liner gives your feet a glove-like fit. Also, the sock liner improves absorption. The insole has a thin layer of memory foam that adapts according to the shape of your foot and gives it the maximum support.

Saucony Men's Grid Caliber tr Trail Runner, Grey/Blue/Orange, 13 M US

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Pros

  • The sock liner provides extra comfort and absorption.
  • It has an arch support that protects your foot and ankle from injuries.
  • The rubber outsole provides the required tackiness.
  • Comes at a reasonable price.

Cons

  • The sizing scheme of the shoe is not up to the mark. You might have to buy a size smaller or larger than what you usually wear.

7 Best Trail Running Shoes for Women

1. Salomon-XR-Mission-Running-Celedon

When you are looking for a new pair of trail shoes a lot of things pass through your mind. Your shoes should be economical, stable, have enough room, and shouldn’t be too flat. The Salomon Women’s XR Mission trail running shoes are three things: tough, comfortable and multipurpose.  If you are a woman, looking for a running, walker or high-quality durable shoe, these are a perfect choice.

It features a mesh upper area which keeps your feet dry and ventilated. Its TPU Epic front keeps the feet safe from getting injured if they get hit.  It also has the sensiflex technology which helps the foot to have enough room where it can expand and contract according to your desire. It also includes Sensifit technology which means that it gives your foot a perfect shape according to the natural movement of the foot.

It is firmer under the ball and heel but it is lightweight in the midsole, which allows your foot to move comfortably and doesn’t put extra weight on the foot. From the inside it is soft and cushioned; this helps to reduce friction which might lead to foot burn or overheating of the foot.

Salomon Women's XR Mission Running Shoe,Celedon/Papaya/Pop Green,8 M US

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Pros

  • Quick lace system
  • Lightweight and durable
  • The sole has a perfect thickness
  • Quick release system allows the foot to stay relaxed and comfortable
  • Wider toe box
  • Excellent for running on track and trail

Cons

  • Thin sole and can sometimes feel the unevenness of the ground
  • Lace pockets are not easily locatable
  • Runs small

2. Saucony-Women's-Excursion-Running-Citron

When you are going on a trip and in need of a good pair of shoes, the Saucony Women’s Grid Excursion TR9 Trail Running Shoe is undoubtedly the best option. They are three main things: comfortable, ventilated and trendy.  They are basically trail running shoes but also built for neutral running.

For sweaty and stinky feet, the exterior is a blessing. Its mesh upper portion is made of durable synthetic overlays that allow the air to pass through which creates a breathable atmosphere for the feet. It has a foam cushioned tongue and the collar provides comfort for the ankle. It is also lined with fabric from inside so that it is comfortable when worn without socks. It also has detachable insole which can be used as desired.

In addition to that, it has IMEVA midsole which supports the underfoot. It also has an excellent heel grip system which prevents sprains while running. It also has abrasion-resistant XT600 carbon rubber outsole which gives strong grip and traction on the road, rocks, dirt or even loose sand.

Saucony Women's Grid Excursion TR9 Trail Running Shoe, Pink/Grey/Citron, 7.5 M US

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Pros

  • The tongue is at the perfect position
  • Excellent toe box
  • Strong heel grip
  • Easily wearable
  • Has required traction

Cons

  • Sometimes there is a need for an arch for flat feet
  • Can hold water and become heavy
  • Can slip on slippery rocks

3. Adidas-Originals-Womens-Rockadia-Running

If durability and comfort are the features you look for in a shoe then Adidas Women’s Rockadia W Trail Runner is for you. It has a good grip and excellent construction, they are made for trail running.

The outside of the shoe mainly consists of a breathable mesh covering which allows perfect ventilation of the feet. Its three white strips on the sides are made of a slick material which prevents the shoe from getting dirty. The inside of the shoe has a medium or neutral cushioning which provides support for the feet. The foam insole is removable so it can be used according to your needs.

The sole is made of rubber which provides excellent traction and is an excellent shock absorber as well. The sole protrudes to the toe area as to avoid getting hurt if stubbed accidentally. The heel is made approximately 1 inch higher to give maximum support for the foot.

adidas Women's Rockadia Trail Running Shoe, Grey/Black/Pink, 8 M US

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Pros

  • Well-built and doesn’t wear easily
  • Good for trail running
  • The ramped-up heel provides support to the feet
  • Rubber soles are helpful on uneven surfaces

Cons

  • Not enough toe-space
  • Not good for wide feet
  • Soles are not flexible

4. ASICS Women's Gel-Scram 3

These efficient, versatile and comfortable trail shoes can be your best running partners. ASICS is a renowned sports apparel company. These shoes feature the ASICS’s impact gel that maximizes comfort and convenience.

It provides the perfect fit for any kind of foot shape and size. It has an adequate lightweight feeling to it that enforces your running experience. The interior of the shoe is designed such that it is well padded and secures the foot perfectly.

The outsole of the shoe is made to protect the midsole from any kind of wear and tear. They are ideally designed for trails but they function pretty well on other grounds as well. The quality is quite reliable at such a reasonable price.

There are a number of vibrant colors to choose from. The outsole provides required traction to prevent injuries.

ASICS Women's Gel-Scram 3, Grey/Silver/Blue, 9 B(M) US

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Pros

  • The shoes are quite durable and sturdy.
  • They have a perfectly padded interior to prevent injuries and maximize absorption.
  • The traction provided is ideal.

Cons

  • Send out a squeaking sound while running.
  • The size is half size scheme smaller than usual.

5. Merrell Women's Glove 4

These shoes are one of the most ideal and appealing running shoes on the market. Their construction is such that the flexibility, resistance, traction, durability, and style is exactly on point. For long trail sessions, this shoe is just perfect.

This shoe is more supportive, protective as well as stylish as compare to its predecessor. The upper is made of a synthetic and textile material that is both durable and breathable. Apart from synthetic and textile, the mesh is also added to the upper part for making it more breathable. The inner is also lined with the same mesh.

The underfoot is protected with a pad known as trail protect pad specifically designed for this shoe. The outsole is made of Vibram that is flexible, durable and provides adequate traction. This outsole makes these shoes perfect for both long and short trails. The shoe fits like a glove due to the 4mm zero drop cushion lining added to it.

Merrell Women's Glove 4 Trail Runner, Very Grape/Astral Aura, 8.5 M US

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Pros

  • The tongue of the shoe along with the laces secure your foot completely.
  • The shoes are very appealing visually.
  • It is more flexible as compared to other shoes.
  • It has a soft inner for better comfort.

Cons

  • The mesh is slightly thinner than it should be.
  • After use, the shoe gets slightly lose at the ankle area.

6. La Sportiva Women's Bushido

These shoes by La sportvita are perfectly responsive and provide an ideal running experience. The stability and comfort of these shoes make running easy and fun. The protection and support provided works on all kinds of terrain, it is not specific to one kind of terrain.

The upper is made of a combination of fabric and synthetic material. Specifically designed for running on rough terrain. Won editor’s choice award on this unbeatable performance.

It is extremely lightweight, in total it only weighs 284 grams which makes it perfect for long trail running. The construction is based on STB control which used a TPU frame wrapped around the base of the shoe. This provides stability and responsiveness.

The lugs of the outsole wrap up give better traction and support the midsole as well. The TPU shank used in this shoe is designed to prevent sores and ulcers. The upper part of the shoe is made using a mesh that improves breathability. The impact brake system added to the construction of the shoe helps in stability on steep areas.

La Sportiva Women's Bushido Trail Running Shoe, Grey/Mint, 42 M EU

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Pros

  • The interior has a sock lining.
  • The stability and control are maximized using different technologies.
  • The outsole protects the foot from uneven terrain.
  • It is extremely lightweight.

Cons

  • The help cup has a slippage problem.

7. Reebok Women’s Ridgerider 2.0

If you are looking for something budget friendly then this shoe is for you. It is lightweight and supportive as well as it provides enough protection to keep the touch of debris and rock away from your foot.

These shoes have a synthetic upper with mesh added to different places for making the shoe breathable. The rubber outsole provides enough traction on both dry and wet surfaces.

It has a low-cut shaft measure approximately 3 inches and provides better control and stability. The mid-sole is a complete CMEVA full-length sole that gives ideal protection. The cushioning provides you a better support rather than giving you a cloud-like a feel.

It is designed for daily running on a normal terrain that is not very technical. As compared to other trail shoes it is lightweight. There are many color options to choose from.

Reebok Women's Ridgerider Trail 2.0 Track Shoe, Ironstone/Seaside Grey/Coal/Skull Grey/Black/Silver/Pewter, 7 M US

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Pros

  • The shoes provide maximum control and stability.
  • Traction for both dry and wet surfaces is available.
  • The shoes are extremely reasonable.
  • The underfoot is very protective.

Cons

  • The heel cushioning is not enough.

How to Choose the Best Trail Running Shoes

  • Trail Type – The first thing you should consider before investing in a pair of trail shoes is the type of trail you will be running on. This is because every shoe is designed keeping a certain trail and terrain in mind. If you use shoes made for non-technical terrain on a technical terrain, definitely your shoes will start tearing apart. Moreover, this will all affect the protection given by your shoes. Shoes made for technical terrains have more support and control as compared to shoes made for non-technical terrain.
  • Weight – The weight of the shoe is a high priority issue since this has a large effect on your efficiency while running. It is advised that you go for lightweight shoes because they let you run fast. A good balance shoe with lightweight is what you want. Usually, a normal pair of shoe weighs approximately 1 pound per pair. If a pair weighs more than this, it will make you feel sluggish and pulled back in long runs.
  • Traction – The outsole of the shoe is usually neglected by amateurs as they don’t know its importance. The rugged looking rubber added to the bottom of the shoe is not just for dandy and stylish looks rather it is to provide adequate traction to you while running. The performance of the outsole depends on the material and the model of the shoe. The traction added to the material provides grip on slippery and steep areas which prevents you from slipping. Usually, rubber is a good option for the outsole. It provides the best traction.
  • Cushioning – This feature is extremely important for your own safety and comfort. Cushioning is provided on the inside of the shoe to absorb all the shocks on impact with the ground. Moreover, these cushioning grips on your foot properly to prevent your ankle muscles from spraining as well as for supporting your knee joint. The cushioning also prevents your foot from developing ulcers and sores which is very common in runners.
  • Heel to Toe Drop – This feature is not at all recognized amongst new runners. It is only known and followed by hardcore runner, even though it plays an important role in the stability and control provided by the shoe. This is the difference in the height where your foot sits between heel and toe. Usually, shoes have a heel to toe drop of 4mm to 8mm. Shoes made for rugged and very technical trains have a higher heel to toe drop. This completely depends on your personal preference and comfort.

Trail Running Shoes Vs. Hiking Shoes

Trail Running Shoes Vs. Hiking Shoes

People new to running or hiking usually ask the question whether trail running shoes can be used for hiking or vice versa. The answer to this depends completely on what kind of area you run or hike on. Also, your personal preference comes into play here. If we look at hiking boots, they are heavier and bulkier as compared to trail running shoes which should be lightweight to improve the runner’s efficiency. Hiking shoes have larger lugs as compared to trail running shoes, the reason being they have to dig into the dirt and hold on to it to prevent slipping and injuries.

Moreover, trail running shoes are designed specifically for “running”. Their grip is made to grip the ground while running not during slow and careful walk which is what hiking is all about. Hiking boots are made more stable as they are used on technical and rugged terrain whereas trail shoes are made more breathable and lightweight for longer runs. The hiking shoes are more durable and sturdy while trail running shoes are delicate as compared to them. They can hardly last the conditions of a severe rugged terrain. The hiking shoes have an all-around traction added to them, where running shoes have certain traction points and options.

Conclusion

All the important details of buying trail running shoes have been discussed so far. While choosing the best trail running shoes for yourself, make sure you consider the type of feel and comfort you prefer. Every shoe model is made to target a certain terrain and preference.

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