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Reviews > Footwear > Trail Shoes > Salomon OUTline Hikers > Test Report by Christie KimberSalomon OUTline Hikers
Long Term Report
May 10, 2019
Name: Christie Kimber
Height: 6’0" (183 cm)
Weight: 145 lb (66 kg)
Email address: christiekimber AT yahoo DOT com
City, State, Country: Courtenay, British Columbia (BC), Canada
I started hiking in 2015 when I moved from Saskatchewan to Vancouver Island, British Columbia. I started with day hikes and have eventually pushed myself to weekend and even week-long excursions. I am a three-season hiker. That being said, as I gather new gear and develop skills I am pushing my limits to try out 4-season backpacking and mountaineering. Vancouver Island gets a lot of rain and has a moderate climate. I also spend time in interior British Columbia in the Rocky Mountains.
Year of Manufacture: 2019
Shoe style: OUTline
Size: 11 Women's
MSRP: $110 USD
Other available sizes:
• 5 to 12 Women's
• 7 to 14 Men's
Color tested: Evening Blue, Crown Blue, and Potent Purple
Other available color combinations:
• Women's: Trellis, Reflecting Pond and Atlantis; Hydro, Atlantis, and Medieval Blue
• Men's: Ebony, Red Dahlia, and Frost Gray; Black, Quiet Shade, and High Risk Red; Black and Beluga Yellow
Listed weight: 265 g (9.4 oz)
Actual weight: 273 g (9.6 oz) for Women's size 11 (single shoe)
Date received: April 26, 2019
• Midsole Toe Height: 10 mm (0.4 in)
• Midsole Heel Height: 19 mm (0.8 in)
• Drop 9 mm (0.4 in)
• As above, although difficult to measure
Shoe attributes (as per website):
• Waterproofness: none
• Height: low
• Anatomical fit: slim
• Inlay sole: textile
• Lining: textile
• Outsole: rubber
• Upper: textile/synthetic
The Salomon OUTline shoes arrived in a regular shoe box with tags. They arrived in new condition. There were no scuffs, loose threads, or evidence of wear. They appear well constructed with clean seams and robust appearing materials used for construction of the shoe. I received a Women's size 11, as ordered. I received the Evening Blue/Crown Blue/Potent Purple color combination. They are much more purple than blue in my opinion. They appear as depicted on the website. I find the color quite appealing; they are very bold.
My first impression when I picked up these shoes is that they are exceptionally light, particularly for a hiking shoe. I have several pairs of runners, hiking shoes, and trail shoes. These feel much more like my lightweight runners than any of my trail shoes. However, they appear heavy-duty enough to withstand trail conditions especially with the Contragrip MD outsole, which I will be sure to test for. The outsole has a lug shaped patter, which I feel will work well for a variety of surface conditions. I will make sure to pay specific attention to this when I am testing as well.
I ordered the size 11. Unfortunately, the size is a bit too big. I have been cursed with miss-matched sized feet. I usually try to size up to fit my larger foot, especially for hiking shoes when my feet tend to swell. I think these shoes fit just slightly larger than usual. A size 10.5 would have fit perfectly, however this was not available. I would suggest to those that are between sizes to size down because the mesh that makes up this shoe provides a soft end point for your toe. I have another pair of Salomon shoes that are a size 11 and fit well, which further supports my suspicion that these fit a little larger than normal.
The website mentions that these shoes are a slim anatomical fit. I agree with this claim, as I have slim feet and they do not feel too wide even though they are a bit too long.
Other features I noticed when I tried these shoes on is that they feel very light weight on my foot as well. There are no pressure points or areas that rub. They are a low-cut shoe, coming below the ankle. They are also very flexible, even with a robust looking outsole.
I went through the return/exchange process to try to get a size 10 shoe. Due to the fact that this was a gear test product I was not successful in this, but I will pass on a few relevant details regarding the process that I learned. Salomon has a 30-day return policy. They do not do exchanges. They recommend returning the product and then ordering a new one. The website states you will receive a return form and shipping label with all online orders. They require the product to be unused, in original packaging, with the tags still on. An order number is required if trying to arrange for a return by phone. As a gear tester I did not have this information, which contributed to my inability to return the shoes among other factors. The customer service provider was pleasant, although unable to help me in this particular case despite trying to elevate the exchange process to the managerial level.
I will be testing these shoes with extra insoles and heel grips to accommodate the size.
Product Description and Construction
The Salomon OUTline shoes are marketed as a sneaker that can be used in the outdoors, which is consistent with my first impression of them. I expect these shoes will work best for a moderate day hike or trail run.
The Salomon OUTline shoes are not waterproof. The shoe's upper part is made out of textile which is soft, flexible, and light weight. The mesh is marketed as "anti-debris" due to the tightly woven fibres that are supposed to prevent debris from getting in the shoe. I will be sure to test for this out on the dusty trail. The insole of the shoe is an OrthoLite insole. This technology provides cushioning, comfort, breathability, and durability according to the website. The shoes have a heel with a drop of 9 mm (0.4 in). Heel drop is the difference between the height of the heel and the height of the forefoot. A high-drop shoe, which I would consider this shoe to be, promotes heel strike over forefoot or mid foot strike. I will see if this feels consistent with my test experience. The outsole looks as though it will provide reasonable grip and protection from rocks or roots. The midsole is made from EnergyCell which is described as a high-performance EVA foam that provides shock attenuation. Shock attenuation is the process of absorbing impact energy due to foot-ground collision. I will be sure to pay close attention for this trait on harder surfaces like rock.
The lacing system consists or regular flat woven laces. There are no locking hooks for laces. Both Men's and Women's shoes can be ordered online or through Salomon retailer store.
Salomon provides a limited warranty for two years against manufacturer defects.
June 25, 2019
I have used the Salomon OUTline shoes on several day hikes so far. My favorite feature is how light weight they are. The shoes do not seem to sacrifice quality or performance for the weight either. For instance, I found the Contragrip soles provide great traction. I have used them in a variety of conditions including on snow covered paths, wet rock, and dry, dusty rock and paths. I found they have worked best on the rocky tundra or alpine for grip. They were worst in the snow as expected, as these are not marketed as a winter shoe. I have also used these shoes as an approach shoe for climbing. They worked well when navigating the trail to specific climbing spots, again because of the excellent grip.
As noted in the initial report, the top of the shoe is a soft mesh. The bottom sole does wrap in front of the toes to protect them against stubbing them on rocks and roots, however the top of the foot is not protected. I have not found this to be a problem so far but have stubbed my toes a few times without concern. Because of the soft mesh upper, I have not completely submerged the shoes in water. Again, the sole protects the foot well when I have walked over wet rock, or small puddles. However, when wearing the shoes in snow the top did get a bit wet with the snow melt and soaked through to the sock.
I also made a specific note about the performance of the anti-debris mesh. There was a particularly dusty week when I was in Nunavut that I wore these shoes, and my socks remained clean on the foot where the shoe was covering it. However, the upper part of my sock, on my leg was dusty and dirty. I think this event supports the performance of the anti-debris mesh.
I have personally found the heel drop on these shoes a bit too high for my preference. I usually wear shoes with a less dramatic heel drop. They do promote heel strike, where as I tend to usually walk with mid foot strike. This is not a deal breaker, just something subtle I noticed while testing the shoes.
I love the bold color combination of these shoes. The flat laces also have a nice feel to them and stay done up.
These shoes have been comfortable to wear for day trips with my use of insoles and thick socks to adjust the fit. I went on one five-night, long distance hike but only brought one pair of hiking shoes. Due to the slight misfit of the OUTline shoes I did not feel comfortable enough to bring them as my primary hikers. I have not noted any hot spots from wearing them, but my toes have quite a bit of room in the toe box and I did not want to risk blisters. I hope to get them out for a single overnight backpacking trip in the next two months.
The Salomon OUTline shoes are an interesting combination of light weight, flexible runners with a durable, grippy outsole.
Long Term Report
Aug 17, 2019
After a few more day hikes to trouble shoot the fit of these shoes, I decided to take them out overnight. We did not have any one-night overnight trips planned, so I went for it and used them on a multi-day hike. While these wouldn't be my first choice of shoes for a multi-day hike due to the imperfect fit as described above, and lack of protection as described below, I was able to elicit a lot of more information testing them over a longer period of time.
First off, are the features I liked about the shoes. Transitioning into summer conditions are where I felt these shoes really shined. The upper mesh was very breathable, so even in very hot conditions my feet did not feel uncomfortable. The feather-like weight of the shoes contributed to this as well. It was very noticeable just how dry my socks were at the end of the day.
I also feel as though the Contragrip sole is a great all-around sole. I felt I tested these shoes on a variety of conditions including, alpine rock, sub-alpine, exposed tree roots, and steep side hills with loose dirt. Grip and traction were never a concern with these shoes.
In terms of overnight, multi-day backpacking, the reason I would not pick these shoes as my first choice is for protection. I have found in talking to various people that shoe preference varies widely. With a full 65 L pack, I am someone that prefers to be in hiking boots with ankle support particularly while traversing rocky, unstable ground. The other issue I had was that these shoes are not perfect for all weather conditions. I think they perform best in hot summer conditions. Unfortunately, we got poured on by a rainstorm making our last day very wet and muddy. The upper mesh while breathable, is not water proof, so my feet were wet.
That being said, my socks did not get dirty despite getting the shoes very dirty, so I think the anti-debris mesh works well. The shoes also dried out very quickly, so there is a tradeoff between leather or Gortex which I feel has better water protection but takes a long time to dry out compared to these shoes. They were also easy to clean at home with just water after getting them all dirty.
Thank you to Salomon and BackpackGearTest.org for allowing me to test these shoes.
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Reviews > Footwear > Trail Shoes > Salomon OUTline Hikers > Test Report by Christie Kimber