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Salomon Speedcross 6 - Women's Review

With an aggressive outsole and exceptional protective features, this trail running shoe is our top choice for the sloppiest terrain
salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review
Credit: Salomon
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $140 List
Manufacturer:   Salomon
By Ally Arcuri ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Oct 14, 2022
77
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 20
  • Foot Protection - 25% 9.0
  • Traction - 20% 10.0
  • Sensitivity - 15% 7.0
  • Stability - 15% 6.0
  • Comfort and Fit - 15% 6.0
  • Weight - 10% 6.0

Our Verdict

The Salomon Speedcross 6 is a shoe with a reputation for being a beast on the trail. With thick, well-spaced lugs and plenty of protection, the newest version of the Speedcross is a shoe for runners looking to sink their feet into sloppy trails. The grippy ContraGrip outsole bites down into the earth for confidence and security. The cushioning around the upper makes it comfortable for those it fits, and its relatively light weight feels easy and breezy on the trails. If you want a semi-narrow shoe that can help you leave the competition in the soggy dust, this is the one for you.
REASONS TO BUY
Amazing traction
Very protective
Durable outsole
Specific fit
REASONS TO AVOID
High heel feels less stable
Narrow fit won't suit everyone
Lugs wear down on pavement

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Awards Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award 
Price $140 List
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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69
Star Rating
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Pros Amazing traction, very protective, durable outsole, specific fitSuperior comfort, light on foot, protective cushioning, stable architecture, breathable upper, great tractionWell-cushioned midsole, excellent traction, good stability, excellent at everything including long distances, high valueLight, very protective, excellent mud shed, superior traction, surprisingly stableAffordable, comfortable, good crossover shoe, great for beginning trail runners
Cons High heel feels less stable, narrow fit won't suit everyone, lugs wear down on pavementLace pocket is difficult to use, tight collar can bite into the ankle, pricyStack height takes some getting used to, less customizable lacebedNarrow fit, runs small, rigid construction, takes time to break-inNot rugged enough for technical trails, less sensitive
Bottom Line With an aggressive outsole and exceptional protective features, this trail running shoe is our top choice for the sloppiest terrainOur favorite shoe offers a well-balanced ride with one of the stickiest and most confidence-inspiring outsoles we've ever seenWith a comfortable and responsive midsole and enough room in the forefoot for toe wiggle, you'll be happy running mile after mileStable and deliciously sticky, this contender is just a crusher all the way around, built for training runs and long distances alikeIf you are looking for an affordable shoe to run light trails and fire roads, look no further because this is the perfect shoe for you
Rating Categories Salomon Speedcross 6 Salomon S/Lab Ultra 3 Hoka Torrent 2 - Wo... Dynafit Feline SL -... Brooks Divide 2 - W...
Foot Protection (25%)
9.0
7.0
8.0
9.0
6.0
Traction (20%)
10.0
9.0
9.0
10.0
7.0
Sensitivity (15%)
7.0
10.0
7.0
7.0
6.0
Stability (15%)
6.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
8.0
Comfort and Fit (15%)
6.0
9.0
8.0
5.0
7.0
Weight (10%)
6.0
6.0
9.0
6.0
8.0
Specs Salomon Speedcross 6 Salomon S/Lab Ultra 3 Hoka Torrent 2 - Wo... Dynafit Feline SL -... Brooks Divide 2 - W...
Measured Weight (per shoe) 9.07 oz (size 7) 8.68 oz (size 7)
9.8 oz (size 9)
7.41 oz (size 7)
8.6 oz (size 9)
9.45 oz (size 7)
9.8 oz (size 9)
8.0 oz (size 7)
Heel-to-Toe Drop 10 mm 8.6 mm 5 mm 8 mm 8 mm
Stack Height (Heel, Forefoot) 32mm, 22 mm 26.8 mm, 18.2 mm 31 mm Not disclosed 20 mm, 12 mm
Upper Textile/synthetic Textile/synthetic Engineered mesh Mesh, continuous nylon Synthetic mesh
Midsole Energy Cell+ Energy Cell, polyurethane foam EVA Feline SL midsole EVA
Outsole Rubber Rubber Rubber Sticky Pomoco Outer Rubber
Rock Plate? Not disclosed Not disclosed None Not disclosed Yes
Wide Version Available? No No No No No
Sizes Available 5 - 11 4 - 13 6 - 11 5 - 11 5 - 12

Our Analysis and Test Results

With a more comfortable, redesigned upper, the improved Salomon Speedcross 6 is a shoe we love for mountain running. It has grippy lugs that extend up to the toe cap and a heel cup that is plush and narrow. Featuring a one-pull lacing system and a 10mm drop, the Speedcross 6 is the most rugged shoe in our roundup.

Performance Comparison


salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - even on softer terrain, the speedcross 6 is one of the best because...
Even on softer terrain, the Speedcross 6 is one of the best because of its incredible ability to shed mud and soft, wet sand.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Foot Protection


The Speedcross 6 has a firm toe bumper, one of the more notable protective features we look for in a trail running shoe. The bumper even has a few sticky lugs on the underside, which adds extra protection and helps give this shoe its rugged appearance.


The Speedcross 6 is a 10mm drop shoe, meaning the heel sits 10mm higher than the toe. When assessing the protective prowess of a trail running shoe, we often consider how plush the midsole is since this is a major line of defense when it comes to protecting the soles of your feet. The heel of this shoe sits at 32mm, which is quite high, with the toe side sitting at 22mm, significantly lower.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - one of our favorite ways to test for a sand-deflecting upper is to...
One of our favorite ways to test for a sand-deflecting upper is to hit the beach and see how much we accumulate in our shoes during the course of our run. The Speedcross 6 left us with nearly clean feet, even after 6 sandy miles.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

If you are a heel striker, you will love the plush heel of the Speedcross. If you are a midfoot striker, you will likely notice that the more flexible design provides far less protection from sharp rocks than many cushier trail runners. Much like its predecessor, this version of the Speedcross has a welded overlay bumper that runs the width of the shoe. We love this for the protection it provides, not just from wet terrain but also from rogue sticks, thorns, and anything else you might encounter at ground level on the trail.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - though the extra stack height in the heel feels a little strange at...
Though the extra stack height in the heel feels a little strange at first, it is well worth getting used to if messy runs are in your future.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Because of how tight the upper weaving is, we never had any trouble with sand getting in through the exterior of this shoe. The synthetic material is designed to keep sand and particulate matter out, and its performance shows this. When we purposefully tried to kick sand up into the heel of the shoe, we succeeded — but only barely. Because the heel cup is snug and well-padded, there isn't a ton of space for sand to infiltrate in that location.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - the toe cap lugs and tough rubber make the front edge of the...
The toe cap lugs and tough rubber make the front edge of the Speedcross 6 super protective.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

The Speedcross 6 does a great job of deflecting the elements when needed, but it certainly isn't waterproof. This trail running shoe is a showstopper for wet, sloppy weather, so as you can imagine, our feet got wet while we tested. If a muddy run with some raindrops is in your future, you can count on the Speedcross to keep you upright and dry. Though expected because of its textile, we were pretty stoked about how quickly the upper nylon mesh dried after getting saturated.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - out in the field testing the water-resistance of the speedcross 6.
Out in the field testing the water-resistance of the Speedcross 6.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Traction


The Speedcross 6 shines when it comes to traction, which is obvious at first glance. The aggressive lugs make the shoe look like a baby crampon, and while we won't be climbing any icy faces in these shoes any time soon, the traction they provide is next level.


The ContraGrip rubber and bi-directional lug pattern make for a shoe that bites into the trail, even when the trail feels soft underfoot. The lugs are pretty widely spaced, which seems to provide a better grip than some shoes that feature a more crowded lug pattern. The main downfall in this arena is that the lugs on the Speedcross wear down pretty quickly when running on paved surfaces. We would never recommend this trail shoe as a crossover shoe anyway, but it is a bummer to see a rugged running shoe losing steam after running a few miles to the trailhead through the neighborhood.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - the burly three-pointed lugs grip in all directions to ensure that...
The burly three-pointed lugs grip in all directions to ensure that your feet stay where you place them.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Sensitivity


Much like prior versions, the Speedcross 6is somewhat of an anomaly. It provides a tall heel stack that dampens the sensation of whatever is underfoot, but since it has a 10mm drop, the forefoot side of the shoe is surprisingly sensitive. The Speedcross offers plenty of sensitivity and magically combines this with comfort and protection. When it comes to trail shoes, this is not the most likely combination since so many focus on one element or the other.


The Speedcross won't be the shoe you reach for if you want to get super intimate with the trail beneath your feet. But if you want a shoe that provides enough information to keep your body adjusting on a dime, this is an excellent shoe. The Speedcross didn't earn the highest sensitivity marks due to its well-cushioned heel, but if you like an ultra well-tractioned shoe with some sensitivity, you have met your match.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - while not the most sensitive trail running shoe on the market, the...
While not the most sensitive trail running shoe on the market, the Speedcross strikes a great balance between ample protection and ground-feel.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Stability


With recent updates, the Speedcross has become noticeably more stable. The forefoot is a bit more spacious, with a slightly larger landing platform. The heel cup cradles the ankle in such a way as to keep it from slipping or sliding around, even if that is what you are doing across a snowfield.


The stability of the Speedcross 6 is good, but not great. It is better than it used to be, but we hesitate to recommend this trail runner to anyone with a history of ankle-rolling injuries. The 10mm drop makes it less stable than a shoe with a lower heel-to-toe differential and a slightly wider base of support. The side walls are high and inflexible, which helps aid in this stability. We definitely noticed a difference running in these shoes when compared to some of our more-stable choices, but we also found that the benefits of the Speedcross far outweighed its average stability. But take that statement with a grain of salt since we never once rolled an ankle while testing this 10mm drop shoe.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - the narrow-ish shoe body and high heel height initially feel a bit...
The narrow-ish shoe body and high heel height initially feel a bit strange. But once your body adjusts, the Speedcross is far more stable than it looks.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Comfort and Fit


The Speedcross 6 didn't earn the highest marks for this category because it is not for everyone. Runners whose feet fit comfortably in this shoe will adore its snug sensation, but the fit is certainly not universal.


Even more so than on previous versions, the Speedcross 6 feels narrow and has a narrow midfoot. Our main tester has average width feet and found it fantastic amid sloppy terrain. We hesitate to recommend the Speedcross to runners who have wide feet or who just prefer a bit more space to let their feet squirm. Despite its narrower-than-average midfoot, the toe box provides adequate space for toes to splay, flex, and adjust while running.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - if you have a narrow foot and love to run technical trails (unlike...
If you have a narrow foot and love to run technical trails (unlike the trail pictured), the Speedcross might be a shoe that works for you.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

The plush tongue and heel collar are wonderfully comfortable. We love that Salomon kept some cushion and didn't strip down these comfortable and protective elements in this version. The Speedcross features a Quicklace, one-pull lace system, which has historically been a style we criticize. To be clear, we still don't love it, but the well-cushioned tongue prevents the thin laces from digging into the top of your foot. The lace pocket has been redesigned, but it still is not particularly functional. The back of the padded heel collar rises a bit high on the Achilles and might not suit the anatomies of all runners' ankles, but we love how the collar dips down to accommodate protruding ankle bones.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - once you secure your laces, it is nearly impossible to tuck the...
Once you secure your laces, it is nearly impossible to tuck the excess into the lace pocket. We keep hoping for Salomon to redesign this feature.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Our main gripe with the Speedcross 6 is that it doesn't breathe. This is not surprising considering how well the upper deflects sand and fine particles. We never had any serious troubles with our feet heating up, but we also did most of our testing in the early mornings and late evenings in coastal California. This will be our go-to winter trail running shoe because of its capabilities, but we will have to pause before recommending the Speedcross to runners who reside in steamier climates.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - the lack of breathability in the speedcross is one of the reasons...
The lack of breathability in the Speedcross is one of the reasons why it is so good at deflecting debris.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Weight


The Speedcross 6 weighs in slightly better than the average trail shoe, but not by much. Each women's size 7 shoe is 9.07 ounces, which is about what we would expect from a trail running shoe.


The kicker with the Speedcross is that it is so well-featured that, of course, it weighs more. Just looking at the lugs and ankle padding gives you an idea about why this shoe weighs more. That said, the weight is well-distributed, which makes it feel lighter while running. If you want an ultra-light shoe, this might not be it. But if you want a shoe that can handle the grittiest of trail adventures, make peace with the extra ounce and utilize all that the Speedcross has to offer.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - from technical terrain down to sandy, coastal bluffs, the speedcross...
From technical terrain down to sandy, coastal bluffs, the Speedcross 6 is a shoe that shines.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

Should You Buy the Salomon Speedcross 6?


The Speedcross 6 is a reliable steed that shows up to work. It is a fantastic shoe if your runs are littered with scree, snow, puddles, and steep, unending climbs. If you are a new trail runner seeking a shoe to suit your needs, this one might be too much. And if your runs occasionally take you down warm, paved paths, we recommend steering clear of the Speedcross. But if dirty mountainous terrain are your jam, this is a shoe to seriously consider.

salomon speedcross 6 for women trail running shoes review - sadie is wondering when she'll get to join for a muddy, rainy trail...
Sadie is wondering when she'll get to join for a muddy, rainy trail run.
Credit: Ally Arcuri

What Other Trail Running Shoes Should You Consider?


If you want a shoe that can crossover to roads, even occasionally, we recommend looking at the Hoka Torrent 2. The Torrent provides a better cushion and has lugs that don't wear down quite as readily. If you want a shoe that offers the sensitivity of the front half of the Speedcross but with a less aggressive heel-to-toe differential, the La Sportiva Bushido II is the way to go. Finally, if you aren't in love with the Speedcross but still want a shoe that bites into trails and provides a precise fit, check out the Dynafit Feline SL instead.

Ally Arcuri
 
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