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Reviews > Footwear > Trail Shoes > Adidas Terrex Fast X GTX Shoes > Test Report by Andrei Girenkov

ADIDAS TERREX FAST X LOW
TEST SERIES BY ANDREI GIRENKOV
LONG-TERM REPORT
November 05, 2013

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TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Andrei Girenkov
EMAIL: agirenkov[AT]yahoo[DOT]com
AGE: 31
LOCATION: New York, New York, USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 5' 10" (1.78 m)
WEIGHT: 150 lb (68.00 kg)

I have been backpacking for 6 years, mostly three-season weekend trips in the Adirondacks, and other parks in the Northeastern US. Additionally, I try to take at least one 5-7 day trip each summer to other destinations in Canada, Western United States and Central America. I use lightweight gear on a budget. My multi-day pack weight is around 20-25 lb (9-11 kg). I enjoy sleeping comfortably and cooking a hot meal at night.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer: adidas AG
Year of Manufacture: 2013
Manufacturer's Website: www.adidas.com
MSRP: US $165
Listed Weight: 15.5 oz (439 g) per shoe, size 9
Measured Weight: 18.1 oz (515 g) per shoe, size 10
Size Tested: US Men's Size 10
Color Tested: Solid Grey/Black/Vivid Red
Listed Features:
- High-abrasion mesh and synthetic upper materials for breathability and durability
- ADIPRENE+ in the forefoot maintains propulsion and efficiency
- Waterproof and breathable GORE-TEX lining
- Speed lacing construction for fast and snug lacing
- TRAXION outsole with Continental Rubber for optimal grip in wet conditions
- OrthoLite insole for breathability and comfort.

Images courtesy of manufacturer:

Adidas Terrex Shoes Adidas Terrex Shoes

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

Sole:

The outsole is made of hardened black rubber that is stamped "TRAXION" and "Continental." Traxion is a brand of hard rubber outsoles made by Continental Rubber specifically made to provide the additional traction and foot protection needed by hikers. It is covered in a rhombus shaped hardened rubber pattern meant to gain traction on rocks. Inside the shoe is a red orthopedic insole stamped "OrthoLite." OrthoLite bills its products as breathable, supportive, and moisture wicking.

Upper:

The upper is made of mesh. It has several tags attached that state "GORE-TEX", "terrex", and "475". Attached to the back above the heel is a loop for pulling the shoe on. GORE-TEX is a brand of very thin breathable waterproof membrane that is used widely to waterproof outdoors sporting apparel. It is based on the principle that the gap between molecules of GORE-TEX is wide enough to let air molecules through but to keep out water molecules. The external surface of the lower half of the shoe is made of a synthetic material similar to rubber that is stamped "adiPRENE." Adidas advertises that adiPRENE absorbs shock and rebounds kinetic energy with every step. A thicker and harder piece of rubber covers the toe and the heel to offer additional protection there.

Lacing:

The lacing system is a bungee cord secured by a black plastic tension clip. At the bottom of the lacing system is an elastic band labeled "lace bungee" where the tension clip can be tucked out of the way. The laces are fed through four loops on each side, followed by an eyelet with a metal ring. When the shoes first arrived, the tension clip was tucked into the lace bungee. As I discovered, it's difficult to properly tighten the laces while the ends are in the bungee. I believe the bungee is just there to keep the loose ends tucked away, but you have to pull the ends out in order to property tighten them.

TRYING IT OUT

The shoes fit very well. My US Men's Size 10 fit like a glove - perfectly true to size. The design is a minimalist black - conservative enough to wear to the office if you're so inclined. I've worn these shoes to work this week in order to break them in. I've found them very comfortable, supportive, and breathable even after a full 8 hours in them. I am also a big fan of this lacing system - just pull and go!

TESTING STRATEGY

My testing strategy will focus on how these shoes deal with the additional challenges posed by hiking terrains. Specifically I will see whether the GORE-TEX insulated mesh material is able to keep out water, whether the outsole provides adequate grip and protection on rocky trails, and whether the arch support is there when my legs are weighed down with a pack.

As this is a low cut hiking shoe, the ankle support is not there for a heavy pack. However I am interested to find out whether this shoe can serve my weekend backpacking trips. I normally carry a 20-22 lb (9-10 kg) pack for a weekend trip, and I am hoping that this shoe will provide sufficient support for my lightweight backpacking style.

I am very excited to try out this wonderful piece of gear and I'd like to thank adidas and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity.

SUMMARY

Pros so far:
- Minimalist tasteful styling
- Accurate sizing
- Comfortable
- Breathable

Cons so far:
- None


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Over the past two months, I've used the shoes for approximately 13 days of camping and hiking and as a full time shoe for several weeks.

All the hiking I have done has been in the Northeast. I spend 4 weekends hiking around the Pocono and Catskills mountains. In each case the temperature was a moderate 60-80 F (15-26 C). On one occasion it had just rained, and the ground was a muddy mess. The rest of the time the ground was dry. The ground cover was a mix of dirt trails and rock mountains that I had to scramble. My typical weekend pack weight was around 20 lb (9 kg).

I also took an extended beach backpacking and camping trip. This involved four nights of overnight camping. It rained three out of the four days. The trails were flat sand, with occasional scrambling up a clay bluff.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

For my beach hike, I wore these shoes without socks because of the sand and rain. The shoes were surprisingly well-fitting and comfortable for being worn barefoot in a wet environment.

Moisture penetration was not a problem - the GoreTex membrane kept the inside of the shoes dry. Unfortunately sand was a big problem for me. No matter how hard I tightened the lace, there was a gap between the ankle and the material around it. The top of the shoe funneled any stray sand directly inside. Additionally I believe that by continuously tightening the lace I managed to stretched it out. I cannot be sure if it was always this long as I did not measure the length of the lace when it first arrived, but it feels very long now, reaching all the way to the toe. If I don't tuck the lace into the lace strap, it dangles around under the shoe.

On the other hikes, the performance of the shoes was impeccable. The shoes are true to size. They fit like a glove, and provided adequate support on overnight hikes with a lightweight 20 lb (9 kg) pack. I felt very steady scrambling up stone surfaces. When using these low cut Adidas shoes I did not miss the higher cut of my former mid-cut hiking boots for stability and ankle support.

After this time the shoes are none worse for wear. They were very easy to clean - just wipe them down with a wet cloth. The shoes are like a nonstick pan! Even during the beach hike, with all the sand getting inside over the top, the material itself doesn't appear to have let any sand through and a quick wipe kept them clean.

Front
Front after wiping down the sand

Back
Back after wiping down the sand

SUMMARY

Pros:
- Very comfortable and stable hiking shoes, even barefoot
- Waterproof
- Great traction
- Very easy to clean

Cons:
- Lace stretches (or is very long to begin with)
- Debris can fall in over the top


LONG-TERM REPORT

FIELD CONDITIONS

For the past two months, I have been wearing the shoes on my daily bike ride to work, at the office, and back. That's 10 or so hours on my feet each day every day, rain or shine. In addition, I've worn them on 4-5 day hikes in Big Pocono State Park, and Tobyhanna State Park in Eastern Pennsylvania. The temperatures have ranged from 40-80 F (4-27 C), and elevations from 0 to 2,200 ft (0 - 670 m). All of my hiking trips have been in good weather, with a light pack, and a not-so-light infant. As mentioned, the daily commute included all types of weather including downpours.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

After wearing the shoes continuously for a few months, I have to say that my initial observations still hold true. The shoes are very well made. They are not much worse for wear now than three months ago.

The hard rubber Continental sole still has a full tread. The uppers are dirty, but have held up well overall. There are no holes or thin spots. Small debris like pebbels has come in over the top of the shoe a few times, but nothing nearly as noticeable as when I wore them on the beach. The Gore-Tex membrane works as advertised. When biking, my feet have stayed dry even through downpours as long as the top of the shoe was covered with a pant leg.

Wearing the shoe on a daily basis for 10 plus hours a day has been very comfortable. Likewise, the support was there when hiking with a 35 pound child carrier on my shoulders. However, this is my weight limit for low-cut hiking shoes. If the terrain was steeper or if the pack was heavier I'd probably move up to a mid-cut boot.

My minor gripe about the lace being too long is still valid. The lace did not stretch any further, but I wish it was about 2 inches shorter. Right now it flops about if it pops out from under the strap, especially when riding a bike.

SUMMARY

I remain a big fan of these shoes. I've used a number of hiking shoes and boots from different manufacturers, different cuts, and materials over the years. As far as three-season hiking shoes go, these have been my favorites to date.

They are stylish, light weight, waterproof, easily cleanable, easily tightened, and very stable. The long lacing system is the only minor annoyance.

I plan to put my money where my mouth is. This weekend I am heading to my local outdoors retailer to buy a pair of winter boots for the season. At the top of my list is this shoe's big brother - the Terrex Fast X Mid GTX. If it is anything like the shoe I tested, I am certain it will be money well spent.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I would like to thank adidas and BackpackGearTest.org for the chance to test these wonderful shoes.

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2013. All rights reserved.

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