The Go To Trail Shoe – Salomon Speedcross 5 Trail Running Shoes Review

Finding a great trail running, hiking, and off road shoe can be difficult. For some folks this can be multiple different shoes, but for us the best multi purpose trail shoe are the Salomon Speed Cross 5.

Salomon speed cross black shoes dirty

Over the past four years we have purchased one pair of these each year. They get used for hard dry trail running, but are also the go to hiking shoe in our closet (garage). This Salomon Speed Cross review summarized some of the best features that keeps us coming back to them even after thousands of miles traveled.

Unlike many trail shoes the  speed cross does not have a rock plate. Even still the protection from the grippy rubber sole and large lugs is plenty to avoid major issues. Unless you step on a nail or tough cactus you won’t know the difference.

Keep Shoes Tight – Quick Tie Laces

We have used the Speed Cross for a trail triathlon, including on the ride. The ability to pull them on and tighten the laces quickly helped to reduce transition time in a sprint triathlon. 

Easy Slip On Trail Shoes are also great for daily wear. Having good support in trail shoes is key and the quick laces make it easy to get a tight fit. The tongue also has a handy pocket where you can tuck the laces so all the extra material isn’t bouncing around with every step.

What are Salomon Speed Cross Shoes used for?

Most of our running is done in dry conditions. This means tons of loose dusty trails and occasions some sandy areas. At the same time the home trails do have some stream crossings. The speed cross rubber grips provide great traction for this type of running. In general though the speed cross are made for more intense trails, those with loose rocks, dirt, or other loose surfaces where the huge lugs will be a benefit. 

The lugs are thick and when first getting used to them they feel more almost like running in cleats, although you get used to the feeling. Still, take them out on the roads and compare them directly to road flats and it’s easy to tell the difference. Given this it’s worth trying to avoid roads and hard surfaces. They wind up eating up the soles more quickly.

In a pinch the Soeedcross even work in snow conditions. Fresh pairs, without the soles worn down, use the large mugs as cleats and make it easier to grip in loose snow. Ice becomes a problem, and crampons when necessary can be worn over them, but there has never been hesitation in packing the Speed Cross 5 for any condition running.

Speed Cross Drop Height

A few years ago the big thing in the running world became analyzing the drop of a shoe. This is the difference in height between the heel and the ground vs. the toe and the ground. Typically the heel is raised more than the toe, but a totally flat shoes would have a neutral drop.

The Salomon Speed Cross 5 has a heel stack height of 35mm and a toe stack of 25 mm, resulting in a drop of 10mm

Great Cross Over Hiking Boot

The speed cross 5 are gripping and sticky which makes for easy light bouldering. Get gaiters for better protection and to avoid getting debris into the shoe and they become a wonderful hiking shoe. 

Especially since it is easy to tighten and loosen the shoe they do well as your feet swell over the course of a long day. We have hiked for 8+ hours in them and run an 50 kilometer race, and they still hold up. Of course after such epic outings it always feels good to peel shoes off, but there has been no damage by them. 

 The Speed Cross 5 fit has been true to size for us. Because of the nature of doing long runs and hikes in them erring on the side of getting a larger size helps with feet swelling. Otherwise just go with your standard size.

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Find out when is the right time to replace the Salomon Speed Cross and other running shoes. If you are going on a long run, and need to find out other gear to take along make sure to check out the review of using a hydration vest or other water bottle options