Best Trail Running Shoes For Women: 5 Models to Consider

As a jogging addict myself, I know how the same roads and views can sometimes bring you boredom and decrease the amount of joy and fascination that you once had when you started running. No matter when you jog, whether it’s morning or evening, the feeling of running is amazing once you turn it into a habit.

I can admit that switching to trail running on some days brought a second life into my passion, and I’ve fallen into running only deeper. Thanks to my friends who share the habit and passion for running with me, I started trail running in the right way, knowing about the right clothing needed for this activity. Being aware of how many people start this journey from the wrong leg, I want to guide you and share some tips on how to select the perfect pair of trail running shoes to enjoy your new sports routine.

So, how the trail running shoes differ from some common jogging sneakers? The thing is, different types of shoes are designed to run on different terrains, and that’s not a marketing trick to force you to buy an extra pair of expensive shoes. Without sneakers for trail running that will act as a tread from the main dangers of rough terrain that are stones, tree roots, and dirt, you are unlikely to fall for this sport.

The right sneakers will protect against bumps and slipping and help you to focus only on fresh air and breathtaking views of the forest, park, or other areas that you have chosen as your location. That’s why I decided to write reviews on the five pairs of trail running shoes that I profoundly recommend trying if you want to engage in this type of sport.

Top 5 Trail Running Shoes

To put it simply, trail running is far away from your usual morning jogging routine. Therefore, if you want to change or alternate between different types of running, you need to understand and accept the difference of the specific clothing pieces required. Trail running is among pretty dangerous sports and involves running around tricky obstacles on the way, so, high-quality sneakers are a guarantee of successful completion of the route.

If wearing ordinary sneakers, it is almost impossible to enjoy this type of running without experiencing inconvenience or injuries. However, there is no separate category of shoes for trail running.

Therefore, you need to understand what characteristics are necessary for good trail running sneakers to choose the right pair for yourself.

The most important points to consider when choosing the perfect shoes are convenience, ergonomics, and a high degree of cushioning and protection. Also, the material should be durable and, ideally, waterproof.

It makes all soft and flexible running shoes unsuitable for trail running. After talking to my friends who have been into this type of running for a long time, I spent a couple of nights looking for the perfect shoes at an affordable price. I have settled on these five pairs of shoes and will gladly share the list of the best trail running shoes with you.

1. ASICS Women’s GEL-Venture 5 – Great Waterproof Trail Running Shoes

When it comes to trail running, it’s better to pick rigid sneakers with a thick but flexible sole. That’s why I turned my attention to this Asics Gel-Venture pair. I like the Japanese brand Asics, as it has the largest selection of running shoe lines for various purposes, including trail running.

These sneakers are solidly built, especially the upper part. They have treads and a built-in protective plate that will save your fingers and feet from sharp stones.

At the same time, the pair is quite lightweight. Once you wear these shoes, you will feel the stability of the soles that is a must when running on forest paths. I also want to praise the composite material used for their production. It makes these running shoes water-repellent and wear-resistant, so even if you suddenly get caught in the rain, the shoes will not lose their appearance and protect your feet.

The technology of a gel shock absorber in the insoles allows you to dissipate the shock load during long runs on ascents and descents of the road. Besides, these sneakers are quite wide in feet and offer great arch support. Also, they have a pretty attractive look. You can choose your favorite color or match the color of your costume and get aesthetically satisfied by putting these shoes on. All in all, it is a very durable, reliable option for starting trail running.


  • Attractive design available in many colors
  • Water-repellent and water-resistant
  • Comfortable soles


  • Quite pricey

2. New Balance Women’s 510V4 – Well-Cushioned Trail Running Shoes

The first running shoes that I have been in love with for a long time are these New Balance ones. They look stylish, complimenting my sports clothes, and are great for jogging in the morning. Besides, they can boast of all the necessary characteristics that make up a good pair of trail running sneakers.

In addition to the durable material and extra protection of the toe zone against bumps on the road, these shoes feel even more comfortable and lighter than the previous version. They are wider in feet, and the material is breathable. So, if you have wide feet, this model would be ideal for you.

Unfortunately, the size chart is not very accurate. If you are a fan of New Balance shoes and know your size for sure, you should buy this pair without hesitation. It is a good budget option for those who are just starting trail running and do not want to spend a lot of money on an extra pair of sports shoes.


  • Comfortable even for people with wide feet
  • Great cushioning
  • A fair price
  • A stylish design


  • Not the most accurate size chart

3. Salomon Women’s Speedcross 4 – Extremely Comfy Trail Running Shoes

It is just an incredible find in the ratio of price and quality. You definitely won’t find such quality at such a low price. At first, the design of these shoes may seem a little bulky, especially if you are used to lightweight sneakers that feel like slippers. But this pair will ensure the necessary protection needed for trail running. I recommend purchasing half a size larger than your usual one so that these sneakers will fit you perfectly.

The material is superior, and I like that this model is waterproof. A firm grip and thick rubber soles offer great protection. The distinctive feature of this model is a tiny pocket on the shoes’ tongue, where you can fix and hide laces.

These shoes also glide slightly on wet surfaces, but serve perfectly in dry weather and will protect your foot from bumps and damage. If you were looking for a pair with the Quicklace system suitable for trail running, I recommend opting for this one.


  • Stylish design available in different colors
  • Great toe protection
  • The Quicklace system


  • A bit pricey

4. Saucony Women’s Grid Excursion TR12 Sneakers – Women’s Trail Running Shoes for Arch Support

Saucony is a brand that has long established itself as a respected and time-tested manufacturer, especially when it comes to its line of sneakers. Although the products from well-known brands tend to be more expensive, the technologies used to ensure the quality of the material and soles of these sneakers speak for themselves.

This model features everything you need for a comfortable trail running on forest paths. The characteristics include a durable top and a grid of supporting pads to fix shoes on your feet, thus, avoiding injuries. The outsole is also sturdy and comes with an anti-slip feature.

This pair is ideal for wide feet, as these shoes do not taper in the toe so that you are guaranteed maximum comfort. Also, this model is quite lightweight, so you get the effect of bare feet wearing these shoes without the risk of injuries. What’s more, these sneakers offer good arch support.


  • Durable rubber anti-slip outsoles
  • Comfortable fit
  • Made of high-quality materials
  • Great arch support


  • Not waterproof

5. Merrell Women’s Vapor Glove 3 Trail Runner – Great Trail Running Shoes For Starters

These trail running shoes are comfortable to run long distances, and your feet will be well-protected from injuries in these sneakers. The space in the toe is enough for feeling comfortable in this pair as if you were wearing slippers.

If you decide to purchase this model, go for the shoes one size larger. They are made of quite a dense material and can be small in size. However, despite being quite sturdy, these sneakers do not cause discomfort in the arches or spoons. I like the balance of the soles and the durability of this pair.

Also, I want to note that these sneakers have minimal padding, making them extremely lightweight. If you have been looking for a minimalistic design and comfortable feet, consider trying these trail running shoes.


  • A wide choice of eye-candy colors
  • Suitable both for jogging and trail running
  • Pretty lightweight and provide a barefoot feeling


  • Not waterproof

Frequently Asked Questions – Answers to Popular Questions on Trail Running Shoes

Below, you can find the necessary information on how such shoes should fit and how to choose the right model for yourself. I hope that my answers to these popular questions will help you to learn about the specifics of trail running shoes and make an informed choice.

What Are Trail Running Shoes?

Trail running shoes are basic cross-country sneakers that have an aggressive tread with a pronounced pattern. The rubber of the soles of such sneakers is softer compared to basic models. If running on the asphalt, such outsoles will erase quite quickly, but they cling well to grass, soil, and clay. These characteristics make such sneakers great for trail running on different terrains.

How Should Trail Running Shoes Fit?

You need to choose trail running shoes in strict accordance with the size of your feet. In tight sneakers, you won’t be comfortable, and wearing large shoes, increases your chances of getting an injury while running.

Lacing should provide the maximum degree of fixation. I want to note that it is very convenient when there is a one-hand tightening system in the shoes, such as the Quicklace one.

While running on long distances, the feet can swell a lot, and when descending from the hill, you rick knocking down your fingers. That’s why you need to get yourself of pair of trail running sneakers with a firm fit and toe protection. Also, it is better to buy shoes made with breathable materials.

How to Choose Trail Running Shoes?

Since you will probably run not only on soft soil but also on gravel, you should pay attention to the protection of your toes. The top of the trail running shoes should be made of durable materials. The net canvas is not suitable for this type of sneakers, as sand and stones can get into the shoes through such a thin fiber and can cause discomfort.

Do not forget about a quality shock absorption feature. While you are running, your soles strike hard against the surface. It can lead to problems with joints, spine, and even fractures of the foot bones. One way to protect your feet in the long term is to choose shoes with good cushioning and foam soles. Also, some special gel pads and inserts that complement insoles are common for trail runners.

Final Remarks

There are many vital things to remember when picking the right trail running shoes. If you are just starting this type of running, choose sneakers with maximum fixation of the feet and good cushioning.

If you plan to run in the mountains, the main danger is to beat your toes on the stones. That’s why it is extra important to select the best trail running shoes with extra toe protection.

Trail running implies an ever-changing terrain, with rocky soil, swamp, and muddy tracks that can appear on your way. Therefore, the sneakers should have a firm fit and, ideally, have waterproof and anti-slip features.

When buying trail running sneakers, remember that the most important point is your convenience wearing them. I hope that after reading these recommendations, you will get yourself an ideal pair of shoes.

Are you interested in trail running, or are you a fan of jogging? Have you tried any of the trail running shoes that I’ve reviewed above? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Last update on 2022-11-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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