Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Holds foot like a glove, hikes like a shoe but has extra ankle support, also comes in low-cut version
Cons: Speed lace does not work very well and is difficult to use, expensive
Best Uses: Dayhikes, backpacking
An amazingly well-fitting shoe, the Adidas Terrex X Fast Mid provides an extra boost of support while at the same time allowing your foot grip and feel the trail. This shoe has the best fit of any shoes we tested, hugging the bridge of the foot and preventing the foot from sliding at all while hiking. If it weren't for the hard to operate speed-lacing system that eventually malfunctioned, we would have given this shoe one of our awards.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
A well-fitting, lightweight shoe, the Terrex comes in high-cut and low-cut models, both of which are conducive to fast and light, comfortable hiking.
Weighing 1.99 lbs per pair, the Adidas Terrex Fast X is on the heavy side. Though this is the weight for the mid-cut version, and it only weighs 2.5 ounces per pair more than the Patagonia Drifter A/C Women's, which is a low-cut shoe, and it weighs 4 ounces less than the Oboz Yellowstone, which is another high cut hiking shoe. When hiking in these shoes they do not feel heavy on your feet, but instead fit well and feel easy to wear.
The Adidas Terrex holds the foot extremely snugly, cradling the bridge of the foot. There is no sliding around inside the shoe, which means no blisters or uncomfortable rubbing. These shoes, even with a higher cut than most other shoes we reviewed, feel more dexterous than any of the other shoes and are excellent to hike in.
This shoe, like the Oboz Yellowstone Women's bridges the gap between a boot and a shoe. It is lightweight and comfortable like a shoe, yet adds a tiny bit of ankle support, which is perfect for backpackers, hiking on uneven terrain, or for women with vulnerable ankles that are prone to rolling. One of our testers rolled her ankle while on a trip, and continued to day-hike in these shoes, feeling that her ankle was well protected, yet she didn't have the extra weight of a boot.
The toe of the shoe feels very precise and sensitive, which is usually a feature of an approach shoe for climbing or a barefoot style shoe. Rather than a clunky protective toe like on the Keen Voyageur Women's that inhibits sensation while hiking, this shoe allows your toes to engage more and also makes the shoes feel extra grippy.
The primary downside to this otherwise noteworthy shoe is the speed-lace. In general we like speed-lace systems on hiking shoes, such as on the Salomon XA Pro 3D Ultra 2 GTX Women's, however the one of this pair of shoes does not work properly. The plastic mechanism that is supposed to release and lock the lace does not actually release, and requires more brute force than finesse to loosen. Eventually, after multiple times of wrestling with the lace, one of the laces ripped, which was the only durability issue we found with these shoes. Once Adidas refines their speed-lace mechanism they will have a really top-notch product competitive in the outdoor market.
Water Resistance / Breathability
With a waterproof/breathable Gore-Tex membrane, these shoes protect from weather, and with a higher cut, they can keep water out of your shoes in slightly deeper puddles than a low-cut version. If hiking in hot weather, these shoes are not as breathable as the Merrell Moab Ventilators Women's. They also come in a non-Gore-Tex version if you prefer extra breathability over waterproofing.
Since this shoe is so well fitting, it excels at any type of hiking, whether long-distance or just for a quick day-hike. The mid-cut doesn't transition to everyday use as well as other hiking shoes, but they are extremely comfortable on the trail.
As the most expensive hiking shoe in this review, the Adidas Terrex is an investment. If this shoe fits you well, you can be sure that you are buying a comfortable, well-made shoe. Test the laces before you buy them. If they work well, then this shoe would be worth the cost. If the laces are hard to operate, we wouldn't recommend spending almost $200 on them.
The Terrex Swift R are the slimmest in design, lightweight, and available in a Gore-Tex version, too. The Terrex Fast X GTX- women's shoes are a low-cut version.
Men's versions are also available: Terrex Fast X Boots, Terrex Swift R- Men's in mesh or Gore-tex, Terrex Fast X GTX, and Terrex Solo.
— McKenzie Long
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: September 8, 2014
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