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Salomon XA Pro 3D GTX - Women's Review

Salomon XA Pro 3D GTX - Women's
Photo: Salomon
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Price:  $145 List
Pros:  Comfortable, versatile, sturdy, speed lace works well and is easy to use, comes with waterproof model
Cons:  Can be hard to get tight enough, sometimes the laces cut into the foot if too tight
Manufacturer:   Salomon
By McKenzie Long ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 30, 2016
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  • Weight - 25% 7
  • Comfort - 25% 8
  • Support - 15% 8
  • Traction - 15% 8
  • Versatility - 10% 9
  • Water Resistance - 5% 9
  • Durability - 5% 8

Our Verdict

New Version Update - Nov 2016
The XA Pro 3D GTX has been replaced in Salomon's line-up by the XA Pro 3D CS WP.

Our criteria for the best hiking shoe was one that was comfortable and versatile. We were looking for footwear that is lighter than a traditional hiking boot, but burlier and more supportive than a running shoe. The Salomon XA Pro 3D Ultra fits that description to a T. Marketed as a trail running shoe, we found that it performs just as well hiking, approaching, and for missions around town. It has a waterproof/breathable Gore-Tex membrane, allowing it to protect a little better while splashing through puddles or hiking through rain, though it does not dry as fast as a meshy shoe without a membrane like the Merrell Moab Ventilator - Women's. It has a speed-lace system for easy in and out, but it sometimes can be hard to get to the exact level of tightness you prefer. A very comfortable shoe with a supportive upper, it takes a little bit of breaking in for the stiff heel cup to not rub on your achilles tendon. If you are looking for a lightweight shoe that can live up to many outdoor adventures, we recommend this one.

Our Analysis and Test Results

The New XA Pro 3D CS WP vs. the Older Version

Check out the side-by-side comparison below. The new XA Pro 3D CS WP is pictured on the left, and the older GTX model that we tested is shown on the right.
Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Here's a summary of the key differences between the new 2016 version of the XA Pro 3D and the older version:
  • GoreTex Replaced With Climashield — Salomon has replaced the GoreTex from the older model with Climashield Waterproof technology, which, like GoreTex, boasts full waterproof protection.
  • Price Increase — The new version will cost an additional $15 - The list price has gone up from $130 to $145.
  • New Colors — The new version of the XA Pro 3D comes in several colors. Pearl Grey/Bordeaux/Hot Pink is shown above.

We haven't had the opportunity to test out this new version of the XA Pro 3D CS WP yet. That said, we find the changes made to this latest model are not likely to have a major impact on its performance, as the main features and design of these shoes mostly remain the same. The text and ratings in this review still reflect the older version.

Hands-On Review

A cross between a running shoe and a hiking shoe, this durable shoe can go wherever you go, keeping you comfortable and supported

Performance Comparison

Car camping in the Salomon XA Pro 3D, which is a versatile cross...
Car camping in the Salomon XA Pro 3D, which is a versatile cross between a running shoe and a hiking shoe. It is also comfortable for every day and around town wear.
Photo: McKenzie Long


At 1.72 lbs, the XA Pro 3D weighs a quarter of a pound more per pair than our lightest shoes, the Merrell Siren Sport - Women's and the Salomon X-Over. This means they are still a light shoe, and do not add much weight to your legs as you hike, but they do have some added stiffness and support. They still weigh far less than our heaviest shoe, the Oboz Yellowstone - Women's, which comes in at 2.24 lbs per pair.


As a running shoe/hiking shoe hybrid the XA Pro 3D is a comfortable, versatile model of shoe and straddles the gap between hiking boot and running shoe. They run slightly big, being longer in the front than other shoes of the same size. For hiking we think is a beneficial feature because it keeps your toes from hitting the front of the shoe when hiking downhill, and gives your toes room to breathe and move instead of feeling cramped.

The heel cup of this shoe is fairly stiff, which is great from a support standpoint, but it does require a tiny bit of breaking in before it feels really comfortable. At first it digs into the heel. Once broken in, these shoes feel great for just about any activity: hiking, running, or hanging out around town.


Stiffer than the Salomon X-Over, for a low-cut shoe, the XA Pro 3D is still fairly supportive. The shoe is built on a women's specific last, and the collar height and sole hardness have been adjusted according to feedback from women during the design of the shoe. The 3D chassis is a protective, supportive system winding around the rear of the shoe, adding cushion and stability.

The Salomon XA Pro 3D, though it is marketed as a running shoe...
The Salomon XA Pro 3D, though it is marketed as a running shoe, performs well in many applications such as hiking, as a climbing approach shoe, or even around town missions.
Photo: Luke Lydiard


With lugs on the short side, these shoes don't bite into the trail like some other sole patterns, however they still feel solid while hiking. The sole on the heel is wider than the heel of the upper on the shoe, which provides extra stabilization.

A comparison of the soles of both the Salomon XA Pro 3D (bottom) and...
A comparison of the soles of both the Salomon XA Pro 3D (bottom) and the Salomon X-Over. The X-Over tread is flatter and more uniform, similar to the sticky rubber soles on climbing approach shoes.
Photo: McKenzie Long


This model has rubber reaching up on the toe of the shoe, similar to the X-Over and the Keen models of shoes, which protects the foot and protects the shoe from showing wear too soon. The materials of the upper, though not leather, are fairly burly and withstand abrasion and hard use well.

Water Resistance / Breathability

With a waterproof/breathable Gore-Tex membrane, these shoes stand up to wet conditions as long as water doesn't get into your shoe through the top. They are not as quick to dry as other meshy shoes without a membrane, but they won't get wet as quickly. We like them for hiking where we may run into the occasional puddle or snow patch.

Best Application

The stand-out aspect of the XA Pro 3D is the versatility of the shoe. It can be used by a day-hiker or a backpacker, a trail runner, a climber, or the occasional car-camper. It is a technical outdoor shoe that is useful in many different applications. Salomon categorizes this shoe in the "Mountain Trail Running" category, but we find it to be an excellent all-around shoe. If you want to purchase one shoe and use it for multiple activities, this shoe does the job of multiple other specialized shoes.


For a technical running or hiking shoe, the XA Pro 3D are a bit high in price, costing about $145. They aren't the best deal out there, but they won't break the bank either. Since this shoe is durable and long lasting, the cost is worth the performance.

McKenzie Long