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HOKA Speedgoat 5.0 Review

This lightweight trail running shoe has become a fast favorite among the thru-hiking crowd
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HOKA Speedgoat 5.0 Review
Credit: Ryan Huetter
Price:  $155 List
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Manufacturer:   HOKA
By Ryan Huetter ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 3, 2023
65
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#14 of 18
  • Comfort - 25% 8.0
  • Support - 20% 6.0
  • Traction - 15% 6.0
  • Water Resistance - 15% 3.0
  • Weight - 15% 9.0
  • Durability - 10% 6.0

Our Verdict

The Hoka Speedgoat 5 is somewhat of an outlier in our review of hiking shoes in that it is not really a hiking shoe but a trail running shoe that many hikers have adopted as their favorite piece of footwear for light and fast missions. The reasons these have become so popular should be no surprise — they are unbelievably comfortable and have great traction for trail use. They have good enough support for those who day hike or keep their overnight pack weight low but with none of the extra weight that a normal hiking shoe has. We have reviewed these as hiking shoes for our review, but take a look at the Speedgoat 5 in our trail running shoe review too to see if these are right for you.
REASONS TO BUY
Crazy lightweight
Surprisingly durable
Plush comfort
REASONS TO AVOID
Not waterproof
Can feel unsteady in uneven terrain
Not the most stable shoes

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Bottom Line This comfortable and lightweight trail runner is one of our favorite shoes for fast and light missions especially in hot weatherUnbelievably comfortable and supportive, these awesome hiking shoes can do it allThis is a supportive hiking shoe that is perfect for scrambling and peak baggingThis is the definition of a solid hiking shoe, and is a perfect choice for those not wanting to compromise on off-trail performanceThis inexpensive but good quality hiking shoe is a perfect choice for just starting out on the trails
Rating Categories HOKA Speedgoat 5.0 Hoka Anacapa 2 Low GTX Salewa Mountain Tra... Salomon X Ultra 4 G... Columbia Crestwood
Comfort (25%)
8.0
9.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
Support (20%)
6.0
8.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Traction (15%)
6.0
7.0
9.0
9.0
6.0
Water Resistance (15%)
3.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
3.0
Weight (15%)
9.0
5.9
4.9
6.9
6.5
Durability (10%)
6.0
8.0
6.0
6.0
6.0
Specs HOKA Speedgoat 5.0 Hoka Anacapa 2 Low GTX Salewa Mountain Tra... Salomon X Ultra 4 G... Columbia Crestwood
Measured Weight (per pair, size 11) 1.34 lbs 1.96 lbs 2.16 lbs 1.76 lbs 1.82 lbs
Upper Recycled engineered mesh Recycled mesh Synthetic Synthetic, textile Suede leather, mesh, webbing
Lining None GORE-TEX Invisible Fit Gore-Tex Extended Comfort Gore-Tex membrane None
Flood Height 1.5 in 3.0 in 3.5 in 3.25 in 1.5 in
Last Board/Shank Not specified Not specified Nylon ADV-C chassis Not specified
Midsole CMEVA (Dual density EVA) EVA (30% sugarcane) EVA EnergyCell Techlite
Outsole Vibram Megagrip rubber with Traction Lug Vibram Megagrip rubber Pomoca MTN trainer Lite Contagrip MA rubber OmniGrip
Width Options Regular, wide Regular Regular Regular Regular, Wide

Our Analysis and Test Results

For long hikes in dry conditions or where you need quick drying time after lots of river crossings, the Hoka Speedgoat 5 is a great addition to your quiver of hiking shoes. We love it as a shoe that can go trail running and then head out on a long fastpacking trip in the mountains. It is not the best at everything, making it a niche shoe model for most folks.

Performance Comparison


hoka speedgoat 5.0 - more cushion for long days on hard ground. cover more miles with...
More cushion for long days on hard ground. Cover more miles with happy feet in the Speedgoat 5.
Credit: Ryan Huetter


Comfort


Comfort is the main reason to consider the Speedgoat. They just feel like walking around on a big marshmallow, thanks to the hefty portion of dual-density compression molded EVA (CMEVA) foam midsole. This is a pretty soft version of this midsole, unlike some of the other Hoka hiking shoes and boots we have reviewed. The recycled engineered mesh is light, airy, and requires no time to break in. This shoe excels in warm weather since it breathes so easily.

13 miles and counting. Approaching this backcountry rock climb on trail was a perfect place for the Speedgoat. Our feet were WAY less tired by the end of this day (though the rest of our body was beat).
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Support


The CMEVA midsole of the Speedgoat is soft and squishy, providing a good barrier between your feet and the trail below. It does not feature a rock plate, midsole stiffener, or a shank of any kind, so there is virtually no torsional rigidity. This makes it really great in front-to-back flex when walking or hiking on trail, but pretty unsupportive when side-hilling over uneven ground. The height of these shoes (from the 2 inches of plush cushion) also makes them feel a little high when traveling in technical terrain.

hoka speedgoat 5.0 - traversing along this smooth rock slab, we noticed the torque on the...
Traversing along this smooth rock slab, we noticed the torque on the foot due to the height and the width of the forefoot outsole. Off trail terrain in the Speedgoat is OK, but caution should be taken.
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Traction


A Vibram MegaGrip sole gives the Speedgoat great traction in most wet and dry conditions, and the 4mm deep Traction Lug sole design gives ample bite in loose dirt and adequate surface area contact in firm or smooth terrain. Obviously, being so soft, these shoes do not perform very well when edging.

hoka speedgoat 5.0 - the traction lug pattern is good, but the big recess in the heel...
The Traction Lug pattern is good, but the big recess in the heel area definitely starts getting some wear from rocks.
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Water Resistance


The Speedgoat 5 is not water resistant at all. There is no waterproof membrane or any DWR coating on the mesh upper. They are tall, however, so you can walk through puddles or creeks that are up to 1.5" deep without getting wet. But when they do get wet, and they will, they dry off in no time. We really like these shoes on backpacking trips that involve a lot of river crossings (we hate taking our shoes off to cross treacherous waters), and they are dry with very little hiking time after reaching the other side.

Quickly crossing shallow streams like this one is about as much water as the Speedgoat 5.0 can handle, but if they get wet, no worries - they'll be dry in no time.
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Weight


It is hard to even register the Speedgoat 5 when they are on your feet. Just 1.34 pounds for a pair of hiking shoes is unheard of. Sure, they have limited support, but these are awesome for fast and light adventures.

hoka speedgoat 5.0 - light is right on long hikes, and doing 26 miles over 2 hiking days...
Light is right on long hikes, and doing 26 miles over 2 hiking days we'd prefer the lightest footwear we can get away with as long as it is supportive enough for our needs.
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Durability


With a recycled engineered mesh upper that feels fairly easy to tear and a soft foam midsole that could be easily torn up by rocks, we are actually pretty impressed with the durability of the Speedgoat. No, they are not remotely comparable with something like a full leather hiking shoe, but for lightweight trail running shoes, we have seriously hammered on the Speedgoat, and they are still looking pretty good!

hoka speedgoat 5.0 - the speedgoat 5 after ~50 miles and 4 or 5 hikes. sure they will...
The Speedgoat 5 after ~50 miles and 4 or 5 hikes. Sure they will start to get scuffed up sooner than many hiking shoes, but overall we are pleased.
Credit: Ryan Huetter

Should You Buy the Hoka Speedgoat 5?


This is a niche hiking shoe because it's true wheelhouse is as a trail runner. We recommend the Speedgoat to people who want a fast-drying shoe, one that is good for warm weather, or one that is comfortable enough to go lightweight backpacking with. And, of course, for anyone who also wants to run a bit when they're out hiking. The hiking crowd has adopted this trail running shoe for a reason, and we really do think it is a good value for what it is.

What Other Hiking Shoes Should You Consider?


For less than two pounds per pair, you could try out the Salomon X Ultra 4 Gore-Tex, which offers nearly the same comfort as the Speedgoat but with way more support and stability as well as waterproofing. If weight isn't your main concern, but comfort is, then the Hoka Anacapa 2 Low GTX adds in Gore-Tex and a more supportive midsole.

Ryan Huetter