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Salomon SpeedCross 4, $130
If you mostly run on surfaces other than smooth hardpacked trails—sloppy wet mud, slippery and unstable gravel and rock, loose dirt, slick grass, marshy singletrack, fire roads or anything else—this a shoe you should consider. The classic array of knobby outsole lugs offers reliable traction on a surprising number of surfaces, wet or dry. The only place it won’t seem great is on the roads, but that’s OK because you probably have plenty of shoes for pavement running. The SpeedCross 4 is nimble and fast enough that it could be an idea trail racer, but sturdy and cushioned enough to be the tool of choice for easy long runs too. Salomon’s speed lace system is a top-notch feature that offers a near-custom fit and keeps laces tucked in a pouch out of the way.
Weights: 10.5 oz. (men’s), 9.0 oz. (women’s)
Heel-Toe Offset: 11mm; 33mm (heel), 22mm (forefoot)