Click on image to zoom in
by Nick Pang, of Minimalist Running Shoes and NRC shoe review editor
The more trails I run, the more I enjoy running. But minimalist running trail shoes are usually designed for a specific type of terrain like hard packed trail, mud, loose trail, off the beaten path, or just soft trails. I've been running with the Merrell Trail Glove and VIVBAREFOOT Neo for most trail surfaces and Inov-8 Bare Grip 200 for mud or off the beaten path.
New from Saucony is the ProGrid Peregrine, a 4mm differential minimalist trail shoe that weighs 10.0 ounces (US Size 9.5) and get you closer to the ground for a natural running style. it is also built on the same foot-form as the Kinvara, the popular ProGrid platform.
The ProGrid technology utilizes a modular design and lightweight foam materials to create a lighter and cushioned running shoe designed to absorb impact, dissipates shock, and maximize rebound.
Saucony Super Lite (SSL) EVA is a premium midsole material that is designed to maximize rebound and durability while minimizing weight.
The Peregrine is a moderate neutral trail shoe designed for daily training and high mileage. The multi-directional tread provides excellent traction and a gusset tongue helps keep out debris.
The Peregrine upper includes a sock liner that is breathable, moisture wicking, anti-odor, and also an anti-microbial insole that provides improved step-in comfort with rebound properties. The tongue is gusset and intended to prevent debris from entering the shoe. The fish net mesh provides support without a lot of overlay.
The hydrator collar lining cups the heel and is designed to provide next-to-skin comfort and maximize wicking. EVA pads are located on the tongue of the shoe to prevent lace bite.
The outsole has XT 900 (Saucony's patented Carbon Rubber compound) located along the perimeter of the outsole thus increasing traction without sacrificing durability. An external bedrock outsole (EBO) is sandwiched between the outsole and midsole to protect the foot from rocks. Sticky rubber for the multi-direction lugs provide a sticky grip and works great on challenging terrain.
The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine runs slightly smaller than true size - I highly recommend sizing up a half size. I tested a US Size 9.5 with a decent toe box but would have preferred a much wider toe box for my toes to splay more. Fortunately, it is wide and tall enough for me to run comfortably (sockless) in them for long runs (5 miles and above) without any blisters.
For hard packed trails, I welcomed the extra protection and cushioning! Wearing the Merrell Trail Glove on such surfaces will give your feet a good workout and maybe some bruising because you can definitely feel the ground from 10mm downwards. But the Saucony Peregrine will give your feet a break from the wear and tear.
When wearing the Peregrine for walking, the gusset tongue on my left shoe slides around and slightly scratches the top of my foot on many occasions. It does not do that when I running in them though. Maybe the walking gait and heel strike impact shift the tongue around...
Finally, for trail runners looking to transition into minimal shoes, this is a great bridging trail shoe - lightweight, moderate cushioning, and 4mm drop.
Available at these NRC Stores
Shoes Mentioned in This Review
More information on Saucony Peregrine...