10 Best Cross Country Shoes Reviewed & Compared For 2021

If you are a cross country runner, you know how much distance you can cover in a single run. We are talking about several miles of off-road running. Whether you are a professional or just into general fitness, you have to be on great shoes – a pair that will carry you to the end of the road without a glitch. That is why as an athlete, you require the best cross country shoes that will help you finish your runs without a single worry.

Remember, on or off the track, you can only be the best if you are working with great equipment. In cross country running, your shoes are your number one equipment. Therefore, you need to learn to always pick from the top of the chart.

Best Cross Country Shoes – Comparison Table

Product NameColorWeightImage
Salomon Men’s Speedcross 4 Trail RunnerSlate Blue/Black/Blue Yonder12 ouncesSalomon Men's Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoes, Slate Blue/Black/Blue Yonder, 10.5 D US
ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 24 Running-ShoesBlack/Green Gecko/Phantom12 ouncesASICS Men's Gel-Kayano 24 Running Shoe, Black/Green Gecko/Phantom, 11 Medium US
HOKA ONE ONE Men’s M Clifton 4 Running ShoeBlack/WhiteHOKA ONE ONE Mens Clifton 4 Black/White Running Shoe - 10 M
Saucony Men’s Kilkenny XC5 Spike Cross Country Spike ShoeCitron/Navy/Red2 poundsSaucony Men's Kilkenny Xc5 Spike Cross Country Spike Shoe,Citron/Navy/Red,12.5 M US
Adidas Performance Men’s Supernova Riot M Trail RunnerClear Brown/Black/Base Green4 poundsadidas Men's Supernova RIOT M Trail Runner, Clear Brown/Black/Base Green, 8 M US
Salomon Women’s Speedcross 4 W Trail RunnerPoseidon12 ouncesSalomon Women's Speedcross 4 Trail Running Shoes, Poseidon/Eggshell Blue/Black, 7.5 Wide
New Balance Women’s WT10v1 Minimus Trail Running ShoeGrey/Blue12 ounces
NIKE Women’s Flex 2017 RN Running ShoeBlack/White/Anthracite/Wolf Grey12 ouncesNike Womens Free RN 2017 Running Shoe (9 B(M) US, Black/Anthracite Dark Grey)
Brooks Women’s Transcend 3Silver/Beet Root Purple/Fresh SalmonBrooks Women's Transcend 3, Silver/Pink, 6 B
Saucony Women’s Kilkenny XC5 Spike Cross Country Spike ShoeAqua/Vizi Coral2 poundsSaucony Women's Kilkenny XC5 Shoe Cross Country Spike Shoe,Aqua/Vizi Coral,7.5 M US

Best Cross Country Shoes Reviews

For the love of our customers, we have reviewed the top 10 best cross country shoes in 2018 below. Following thorough field research and several customer references, we have compiled a list of top of the class best cross country running shoes for cross country athletes.

1. Salomon Men’s Speedcross 4 Trail Runner

This 4th edition of Salomon Speedcross trail shoes is the first in our list of cross country shoe review. It caught our attention with its close-to-foot design that makes it one of the most comfortable trail runner shoes on the planet.

This baby has a sensifit design carefully holding your foot from the midsole to the lacing system. In other words, once they are on, they become part of your feet. Add their cushioning to the list and you will be able to handle anything on the trail. With these trail running shoes, you don’t have to worry about any harm.

Designed with a new generation fabric, this GORE-TEX shoe comes in a weatherproof design for all season of running. Nothing can limit you with this kind of creation on your feet. Its manufacturers prioritized your safety as a cross country runner without compromising comfort. The shoe is lightweight, which makes it your best choice for long-distance running.

At this point, we are just about to start. Salmon Speedcross 4 GTX has contra-grip rubber sole designed for soft trails. The sole is complemented by a mudguard strip that makes it durable and weather resistant.


  • Designed with protective cushioning for safe running
  • This shoe can go anywhere since it’s weatherproof
  • Easy to put on and off, thanks to its Quicklace design
  • Durable with contra-grip rubber soles
  • Lightweight feature conserves a great level of energy


  • It has tall lugs that should be reduced to avoid unsteadiness
  • Doesn’t dry fast that makes it only suitable for summer use

2. ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 24 Running-Shoes

If you love running off-road, you need to consider the type of shoes that you wear. You need to spend your money on quality shoes that are specialized for running so that you can get the best from them. If you are wondering the right pair to purchase, consider ASICS Men’s Gel-Kayano 24 Running-Shoes.

One of the best things that you will love about the shoes is that they are designed with a high cushioning that makes them ideal for long distance training. The shoes are designed to provide you with comfort. The shoes are responsive and absorb shock even when you are running on uneven terrains.

The upper body of the shoe is designed with a mesh that provides both breathability and flexibility. It wraps well on your foot and the laces provide a snug fit. The design of the shoes also provides comfort and the stability you need when running.

It is designed with fluid ride midsole that offers the right combination of bounce back as well as cushioning effects. This gives you durability and reduced weight making the shoe comfortable for running.


  • The shoes provide a good fit
  • They are comfortable
  • Shock absorbing feature
  • Provide better stability
  • Mesh offers flexibility
  • Offer better traction


  • Some people find them heavy
  • They are expensive

3. HOKA ONE ONE Men’s M Clifton 4 Running Shoe

When you are picking the best cross country shoes, you need a good cross country shoes pair that can overcome different types of terrains. Not only should the shoes provide you with support but also good traction so that you can get a perfect grip when running.

Are you having trouble selecting the right cross country shoes? HOKA ONE ONE Men’s M Clifton 4 Running Shoe is a top rated shoe that makes running fun and comfortable. The shoes are designed with a mesh and synthetic material that provides a durable performance as well as comfort features. The shoes feature a durable rubber sole with better traction on the ground.

Many runners love the wider fitting forefoot that provides maximum running comfort. The shoes are also lightweight and breathable which makes them ideal for cross country. The mesh and thin synthetic material ensure a good flow of air while keeping the weight of the shoe minimum. Additionally, the shoes are designed with a breathable fabric lining that provides in-shoe comfort.

Another thing you will love about the shoes is the speed frame construction that ensures you do not experience forefoot irritation. You can run comfortably for a long distance without experiencing any irritation on your forefoot.


  • Designed with a breathable mesh
  • The shoes are durable
  • Comfortable
  • Provide a nice fit
  • They are lightweight
  • Perfect for everyday training


  • The cushioning would have been better
  • Shoes wear out too fast

4. Saucony Men’s Kilkenny XC5 Spike Cross Country Spike Shoe

When it comes to running shoes, the brand you choose highly matters. You don’t want to end up with a low-quality shoe from a brand that is not recognized on the market. Saucony is one of the most trust brands that produce quality running shoes. The company provides different types of running and walking shoes that are comfortable for the users.

The shoes are designed with 100 percent synthetic material that makes it durable. You can use them on different surfaces like trail, gravel, and grass.

Running requires lightweight and comfortable shoes so that you don’t end up being tired. This is why the shoes are designed with a lightweight upper design to help you get the best from the shoes.

The shoes are designed with a minimal layering that gives you a performance-driven fit whether you choose a flat or spike version. In regards to the traction, you will love wearing this cross country shoe. It features a firmer midsole combined with a rubber outsole that offers you with the best traction as well as optimal turnover.


  • Shoes are comfortable
  • Provide a nice fit
  • Made with a quality synthetic material
  • Nice stability and cushioning
  • Offer a nice feel and performance


  • Not ideal for hard surfaces

5. Adidas Performance Men’s Supernova Riot M Trail Runner

Adidas is a well-known brand when it comes to quality shoes. If you are looking for quality cross country shoes for men, Adidas Performance Men’s Supernova Riot M Trail Runner will be a great purchase.

I love these shoes because they provide a snug fit which keeps you comfortable throughout your running process. The presence of sock-like construction enables the shoes to fit well. Additionally, they are designed with large hook and loop elastic strap to help in securing the laces and your feet.

You will also appreciate the continental rubber outsole that provides an excellent grip whether you are running in wet or dry conditions. The shoes are also designed in a way that they boost your energy and keep all your steps charged with light and fast energy.

The upper part of the shoe is designed with a mesh that makes it breathable. This provides a cooling effect on your feet especially when it is hot.


  • Designed with a quality rubber sole
  • Provide a snug fit
  • Rubber outsole provides a better grip
  • Ideal for outdoor activities
  • Nice traction
  • Good looking and fits well


  • Don’t have a waterproof layer

6. Salomon Women’s Speedcross 4 W Trail Runner

Finding a perfect pair of shoes for the cross country can be tough. There are so many models on the market and this can make the whole process of finding the best one complicated. However, if you need a good pair that will serve you for many years, I would recommend Salomon shoes for women.

The shoes are lightweight and perfectly cushioned to provide women with comfort when running. They are designed to provide you with enough protection when you are running on the trail. It is made of a mid-feather upper construction that fits you well.

They utilize contra grip technology that combines geometry, compound, and density to work well on various sports as well as surfaces. These cross-country shoes are also designed with a quick lace system that provides you a one-pull tightening. You don’t have to spend a lot of time tightening the laces to get a perfect fit.

Another thing that you will love about thee shoes is the sensifit cradle the feet from the midsole all the way to the lacing system. This gives you a secure and snug fit hence keeping you comfortable.


  • Provide enough protection
  • Perfect for wet and dirty terrains
  • Designed with ant debris mesh
  • They are lightweight
  • Cushioned to provide comfort
  • Features a quick lace system
  • Offer great traction in the woods


  • The soles are hard
  • Some people find them too narrow

7. New Balance Women’s WT10v1 Minimus Trail Running Shoe

If you are planning to buy a pair of cross country shoes, there are so many things that you need to put in mind so that you can end up with the right pair. You want a high-quality shoe that can withstand heavy use and provide your foot with ample protection. You also want a shoe that is durable and flexible and one that gives you the right support.

Would you believe me when I tell you that the New Balance Women’s provides you with all that and much more? This is a top quality shoe that is designed for women who are love cross country. It features 100 percent synthetic material and a vibram sole that make it durable.

The vibram outsole features flex grooves that provide you with better traction and durability even when you are running on rocky trails. The shoes are also designed with a synthetic mesh material that provides comfort without compromising performance.

When it comes to comfort, the shoes have got your back. They feature a premium lightweight foam support for long-lasting comfort. They also have a midfoot wrap that keeps your feet steady. Another feature that you will not find in many cross-country shoes is the odor-resistant treatment. This means that even after sweating, your shoes will not smell bad.


  • Synthetic mesh makes the shoe breathable
  • Provides better traction
  • You will enjoy long-lasting comfort
  • Feature an odor-resistant treatment
  • Made with a durable material


  • They are small

8. NIKE Women’s Flex 2017 RN Running Shoe

Running is one of the best activities that you can engage in to keep your body fit. If you want to enjoy running on different terrains, it is important to consider the types of shoes that you have. Invest your money in high-quality shoes that are specifically designed for running.

In this case, NIKE Women’s Flex 2017 RN Running Shoe can be a great investment. The shoes are designed with synthetic and mesh material to provide you with comfort and durable performance. They also feature a quality rubber sole that is durable.

You will appreciate having a good running shoe, especially during summer. You need a shoe that is breathable to keep your feet cool. This is why this one is designed with a breathable material that allows free flow of air.

The shoes provide you with a lace up closure so you can adjust it to give a snug fit. For enhanced comfort, the tongue and the collar are well padded. If you would like to clean the shoes, they feature a removable foam insole.


  • The running shoes are comfortable
  • Breathable
  • Designed with a quality rubber sole
  • Available in different colors
  • Foam insole is removable


  • The shoe runs small

9. Brooks Women’s Transcend 3

When you are running, you should concentrate on the activity, not the types of shoes that you have. If you want to have a nice experience running on different terrains, get shoes that are specifically designed for running. Brooks Women’s Transcend 3 is one of the best shoes for cross country that is parked with many amazing features.

These are shoes that are designed for moderate overpronator looking for support and effective cushioning. They are designed with a highly breathable laser cut mesh on the upper to keep your feet col especially when running on hot days.

They feature a moisture-managing Element mesh upper that gives you the desired protection from different elements while still keeping you cool. It is also designed with a soft fabric lining that provides you with a nice insole feel.

As compared to other cross country shoes, these ones are designed to provide more support naturally on your knees, hips, and joints. With its DNA midsole, you can achieve maximum cushioning and more energy return.


  • Provides the best support and cushioning
  • Highly breathable
  • The shoes are comfortable
  • Offers more plush and flexibility
  • They are durable
  • Effective pressure distribution


  • Users say they are heavy for running

10. Saucony Women’s Kilkenny XC5 Spike Cross Country Spike Shoe

If you are a cross-country enthusiast, you understand the importance of having quality shoes. You want to buy shoes that can handle different terrains while still providing you with maximum comfort and performance. Try Saucony Women’s Kilkenny XC5 cross country shoes and I am sure you will love them.

This cross-country shoe is designed with a lightweight upper body that provides a nice fit. The upper body is also designed with minimal layers that make it lightweight without compromising its durability and comfort.

Additionally, the shoes are designed with an air mesh upper that makes it breathable. Your feet remain cool hence you feel comfortable all the time. The shoes feature an EVA midsole that provides maximum rebound as well as durability without adding too much weight. This midsole also absorbs shock to enhance your comfort when running.


  • Increased comfort
  • Better stability and cushioning system
  • They are lightweight
  • Provide a snug fit
  • Made with a high-quality material
  • Designed with a quality synthetic sole


  • Some people find them too narrow

Things to Consider – Best Cross Country Shoes

As a trail runner, there are a lot of things you need to consider in order to be able to pick the best cross country shoes. There are lots of competition from different brands and designs. Without the right information, you might end up drowning in junk. For a cross country shoe, the key factors to consider should include:


Many cross-country trails are mostly uneven and rocky. This means that there are high chances of experiencing injuries. This is why you should look for quality cross country shoes that will provide you with more protection in the midsole as well as the outsole. In as much as the shoes should provide you with enough protection, they should not compromise your comfort when you are running.


From the heel to the fore toe, the comfort of your race depends on the cushioning 100 percent. You need comfortable cross-country shoes so that you can perform well. Look for a shoe with a heavily padded midsole to offer comfort even when you are running on the rockiest terrains.


Just like any other exercise or activity, cross country running can have you sweating from head to toe. Sweating in the foot can cause a lot of discomfort and inconvenience. That’s why it’s important to consider breathable shoes that will allow moisture to escape out.

You want to keep your health and hygiene in mind when selecting your running shoes. You don’t want to end up like other runners with smelly feet and shoes just because of the little things you ignored. That is why, according to trail experts, breathability must be considered.

Need to be Lightweight

Cross country running consumes a lot of energy. It would be unfortunate to spend extra effort on lifting your shoes. A great trail running shoe is one that helps an athlete to conserve much of his or her energy. Running shoes with lightweight design meet you half way as an athlete.


Unlike other running terrains, cross country terrains can be uneven, wet or rocky. You need to look for the best shoes that offer you the best traction. This will ensure that you do not slip or fall when you are running and cause injuries. Having shoes that provide you with better traction also ensure that you get an increased performance when you are running.

Other considerations

  • Weather resistance
  • Perfect fit
  • Durability
  • How thick is the sole?
  • Consider the style

Final Verdict

Not all shoes you find on the market are ideal for cross country running. This is why runners should invest in the best cross country shoes that are comfortable, breathable, stable and provide the right support. The shoes should also be durable and provide you with protection. The above guide and reviews cover quality cross country shoes that will make you enjoy running. Depending on your needs, you can pick the right footwear that meets your requirements from our top list.

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