Five Ten Trailcross Clip-in Women's Review
Compare prices at 3 resellers Pros: Incredible breathability, large cleat opening
Cons: Upper lack support, lateral foot movement
Manufacturer: Adidas Five Ten
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Five Ten Trailcross Clip-in Women's
|Price||$159.95 at Backcountry|
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|Pros||Incredible breathability, large cleat opening||Comfortable fit, large cleat opening, good power transfer, excellent trail absorption||Lightweight, good power transfer, easy to walk in||Protective, comfortable, supportive, well-constructed||Comfortable, excellent protection, excellent power transfer, easy to clip in and out of, great for hike-a-bike|
|Cons||Upper lack support, lateral foot movement||Lacks breathability, expensive||Not the best lateral stability||Not very breathable, moderately heavy||Heavy, not waterproof|
|Bottom Line||A versatile adventure-oriented model for riders needing one shoe that can be used for hiking and clipped-in mountain biking||This comfortable shoe impressed our testers with its fit, trail absorption, and power transfer and is a great match for short trail rides and all-day epics alike||This unassuming shoe combines on and off the bike performance with good power transfer and walking comfort at a relatively reasonable price tag||A supportive and durable shoe made to withstand the rigors of technical trail, all-mountain, and bike park riding||A high-performing shoe that offers comfort paired with excellent stability, protection, and walkability|
|Rating Categories||Five Ten Trailcross...||Crankbrothers Malle...||Specialized 2FO Roo...||Ride Concepts Helli...||Ride Concepts Traverse|
|Stability and Control (20%)|
|Specs||Five Ten Trailcross...||Crankbrothers Malle...||Specialized 2FO Roo...||Ride Concepts Helli...||Ride Concepts Traverse|
|Measured Weight (g)||375g||379g||322g||413g||450g|
|Outsole||Stealth Marathon||Match MC1||SlipNot FG||Clip Grip||DST 8.0 MID GRIP Rubber|
|Closure||Laces, Velcro strap||Boa, Velcro strap||Laces||Laces, Velcro strap||Laces/Velcro|
|Upper Material||Abrashion-resistant mesh, protective molded toe cap||Synthetic||synthetic leather||Microfiber synthetic with TPU toe and heel protection||Synthetic & D30|
|Footbed||Foam||not specified||Body Geometry||Dual-density EVA||EVA Foam|
|Sole||EVA midsole||EVA midsole||Soft Lollipop Nylon Composite Plate||RC PowerDrive nylon shank||D30 High Impact Insole|
|Size Tested||US 8.5||US 7||EU 39.5 / US 8.5||US 8.5||EU 39.5 / US 8.5|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Upon first looking at the Five Ten Trailcross Clip-In you might wonder whether they are hiking shoes or mountain bike shoes? Five Ten designed the Trailcross for adventure, meaning you can bike in it as well as you can hike in them. The Trailcross Clip uses Five Ten’s well-known Stealth rubber outsole to aid in hiking traction. The forefoot flexes comfortably like a hiking shoe and the EVA midsole is reasonably stiff on the bike and pedals comfortably. The mesh uppers are hands down the most breathable of any shoe we have tested, but their lack of structure and support provides little lateral stability for the foot, especially when cornering and descending. If you’re in the market for a shoe that allows you the versatility to clip in and hike, you might want to consider the Trailcross Clip.
Stability and Control
The Five Ten Trailcross Clip-In Women’s has an EVA midsole that is reasonably stiff underfoot and provides a fairly solid pedaling platform. While climbing, we can easily stand up on the pedals with minimal flex in the forefoot, but they are not as stiff as other shoes that score higher in this metric. The shoes feel light on the foot and are easy to spin the pedals with. However, in our testing, the lack of rigidity in the uppers greatly affected our lateral stability and overall feeling of control.
The uppers of the Trailcross Clip-In are made of mesh and lack the rigidity and support found in many other mountain bike shoes. For our testers, this combination results in lateral foot movement, especially on corners where we could feel the inside foot sliding against the outside of the shoe, even with the laces tightly tied. This lateral flex does not inspire confidence nor does it allow us to fully control the pedals. For mellow trail riding, this may not be as noticed, but on technical trails and when leaning into corners, it was quite pronounced.
The Trailcross Clip-In has 32mm of cleat adjustment which worked for our testing but may not be quite enough for those who prefer a more midfoot placement. The recessed cleat opening is 98mm long and a generous 43mm wide, which provides good clearance for cleats. We tested the Trailcross Clip-In with SPD cleats and had no problems clipping in or out.
The Trailcross Clip-In has a long toebox that is more akin to a running shoe than the more blunt and rounded toe boxes found on many mountain bike shoes. Our testers measured their feet and fell between a US 8 and US 8.5 women’s on the Adidas sizing chart which says to size down for a tight fit and size up for a looser fit. Since we have a wider than average forefoot we ordered our normal US 8.5. We found the length to be just a hair too long and the shoe to have too much width and volume in the forefoot. We have read other reviews stating that the Trailcross Clip-In has a narrow fit. This was not our experience and we recommend trying them on for size before purchasing.
The mesh uppers comfortably wrap the foot and provide excellent breathability. We found them to work great in hot desert conditions. But, the Trailcross Clip-In lacks the thicker padding on the tongue and the heel found in many other shoes. The laces are thin and because the uppers are so pliable they are easy to lace tightly, but we could not tighten the most forward laces enough in our test pair to secure our forefoot and had excess fabric at the toebox.
The Trailcross Clip-In’s EVA midsole flexes comfortably underfoot, allows for a comfortable walking gait, and feels very similar to a hiking or trail running shoe. The Stealth Marathon rubber is grippy and changes its pattern with wider lugs at the toe and heel to aid in traction while hiking.
The cleat is recessed into the sole of the shoe, however, our SPD cleats slipped while scrambling and hiking over granite slabs causing us to be more cautious than we normally are. The uppers do not have much lateral stability which affected our hiking downhill, as our foot would move from side to side, especially on steeper slabs and sections of trail. Going uphill, we had less lateral movement and the velcro strap helped to keep our heels securely in place.
The Trailcross Clip-In offers adequate protection for cross-country and light trail riding but falls short for technical trail or bike park riding. The EVA midsole absorbs the trail well and dissipates forces before they reach your feet and helps prevent fatigue, but the thin and light uppers don't offer much protection for the feet.
The front of the toebox is surrounded by rubber which protects the front of the toes, a bonded layer of protection running from the toebox along the midfoot, and an extra layer of materials surrounding the ankle. But there is no protection for the top of the foot and even the pinky toes feel vulnerable under the light rubber layer. The Velcro strap helps to secure the foot, and is very light and pliable, making it easy to move out of the way. The mesh upper breathes incredibly well but is quite thin and porous meaning water and dirt can easily enter the shoe.
Our US 8.5 Trailcross Clip-In Women’s weigh 375-grams on our scale, placing them in the middle of the pack for weight in our review. Given their lightweight uppers, we would expect them to weigh less, especially when compared to some of the higher-scoring trail shoes in this metric.
The Trailcross Clip-In is on the higher end of the spectrum in terms of price in comparison to other shoes in our review and we feel there are better shoes available at a similar or lesser price point that also have better power transfer, stability, fit, and protection.
Our testers appreciated the breathability of the Trailcross Clip-In, especially living in the desert. However, the fit and lack of lateral stability and control over the pedals did not inspire confidence and the shoes did not perform as well as others in our test. We feel that there are other shoes on the market that balance walkability and on-the-bike performance better than the Trailcross Clip-In.
— Tara Reddinger-Adams
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