If my quiver of running shoes were limited to just one model, I would select the Salomon Sense Pro, no question. A long-term review is in order: I’m now onto my third pair, and recently picked up two more from REI at 50 percent off, with free shipping and a $20 gift card bonus (with $100+ purchase by members, through July 13). My first pair was retired after 520 miles, and my second pair is nearing that point, now 440 miles deep.
The Sense Pro is also available from Amazon. The product page is mislabeled: “D” sizes are men’s and “B” sizes are women’s. The differences between the original Sense Pro and the Sense Pro 2 are immaterial: the outsole has a slightly different lug pattern, and the upper has updated cosmetic details.
I’m most impressed with the Sense Pro for its versatility. Consider the range of runs and races for which it is or has been my go-to:
- Daily training in Boulder’s foothills (steep and rocky, with ~2 miles of pavement to start and finish)
- 5 x 1-mile track workouts
- Colorado Marathon (road)
- Run Rabbit Run 100 (mostly gentle trails and jeep roads)
- San Juan Solstice 50 (12k feet of climbing on singletrack and 4×4 roads)
Overall, the Sense Pro is a lightweight and durable running shoe that offers a superb fit, excellent control, and moderate underfoot protection and cushioning. It thrives on runs with a mix of pavement, gravel, smooth singletrack, and moderately technical trails — outings where a more specialized road or trail running shoe would at some point be notably inadequate.
- Weight: 9.2 oz (260 g; men’s size 9), 10.7 oz (300 g; men’s size 11.5)
- Height: 17 mm (forefoot), 23 mm (heel)
- Drop: 6 mm
- Upper: Breathable mesh nylon with reinforcing exoskeleton
- Midsole: EVA with a minimal rock plate
- Outsole: ContraGrip, lightly lugged
- Neutral last, no supportive or corrective features
- Fit: True to size, best for narrower feet
- MSRP: $130
The Sense Pro fits securely, but it’s not constrictive. In this respect, it’s much more similar to the Salewa Lite Train (my review) than the Altra Lone Peak 2.5 (my long-term review). The fit is aided by Salomon’s Endofit, which is an elasticized yoke over the top of the foot, anchored into each side of the last; as well as the Salomon Quick Laces, which apply more equal pressure than conventional laces.
The upper’s interior is buttery smooth, with no rough seams or pinch-points. Last summer I ran the 28-mile Pawnee-Buchanan Loop with only one sock (I dropped the other while loading my car), and had no blisters or even hot spots when I finished.
The upper is made mostly of fine-pored nylon mesh, with a supple but tough exoskeleton that improves durability, adds impact- and abrasion-resistance, and reduces lateral and fore/aft shifting inside the shoe. Together, the fit and the exoskeleton achieve a near perfect balance of comfort and control.
On a few races and runs my feet have become soaked. Dry times are good: the mesh is very air-permeable, and there are few materials in the upper to retain water.
Note: I have narrow and low-volume feet. The width feels about perfect, but a higher-volume foot should work.
When new, the midsole’s Profeel Film successfully blunts sharp objects, but without compromising all ground feel. Over time, however it seems to become more pliable, leaving underfoot protection increasingly dependent on the midsole’s EVA cushioning and on the outsole’s rigidity.
Unfortunately, the cushioning is also compromised with use, because of compression, and the outsole is relatively thin and flexible. With stack heights of just 17 and 23 (forefoot/heel), you will likely retire the Sense Pro’s because they simply feel too thin on mid- or long-distance runs.
For a trail shoe, the Sense Pro’s ContraGrip outsole is relatively minimal. It is most definitely designed for dry and hard-packed trails, and up to moderate grades. For outings on mostly steep, loose, and wet trails, other models will serve you better.
Unlike those more aggressive models, however, the Sense Pro naturally extends to flat and improved surfaces. Case in point: I wore the Sense Pro for all of my track workouts and tempo runs while training for the Colorado Marathon — and then raced in them, too.
For a 9-oz shoe with a minimal lug pattern, the Sense Pro has very good durability. I retired my first pair after 520 miles. The upper looks good as new, but the outsole was very bald and the midsole had become very thin. My second pair is on a similar track, although the upper exoskeleton started to delaminate after about 300 miles; it’s a quick repair job with Aquaseal.
The outsole lasts longer than I would have predicted. The CongraGrip compound seems pretty hard, and this particular pattern has a lot of surface area.
Again, the limiting feature of the Sense Pro’s lifespan will be its midsole. Once underfoot cushioning and rigidity become intolerable, it’s time for a new pair.
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