“I got curious when I saw Nike with a trail shoe on the shelf and ended up buying one and testing it on the trails. Surprisingly, I enjoyed the feel of Nike Wildhorse 6 on the trail and looking forward to more muddy miles with it. “
When I started running, Nike was my first running shoes. To its credit, I was able to go at just 1 minute over my target sub 1 for the 10K distance last January 2011. At that time, Nike was more of a lifestyle shoes entering the running boom. I eventually shifted to several niche running shoes, which had better technology with softer soles and more energy returns. This was the time before I got shoe reviews, team shoe sponsorship and a lot of shoes to try out. Each having its own technology that’s more apt for running. I haven’t bought a single running shoes from Nike since then, up until NOW.
I chanced upon a Nike Wildhorse 6 at the store. White / Mint Green colorway, hard spokes for traction and added heel support with a tight knit fabric. It looks interesting. I’ve heard nice reviews for Nike Kiger but this is the first time I got to see a Nike Trail Specific Shoe. Also, Nike did offer Nike Trail branded items. Then I felt that Nike has probably seen something in the trail community that I’ve always believe in. It’s a growing and viable market. The next thing I did was the find the cheapest way to acquire it and it turns out that it’s 30% off at Tobys.com. I got it a few days, just in time for my short trail runs at nearby trail areas.
First impression is that its light color is not apt for trails but it does look nice and flashy. Let’s get dirty and think of the laundry later. It’s about 11 oz for my 9.5 shoe size. A bit heavy but it does make up for that soft cushy feel when you wear it. Just perfect for slow pokes like me. It also has a collar around the ankle that provides support and also as a way to minimize dirt entering the shoes. It has a mix of rubbery outsole that includes the side and the toe area with mesh fabric for breathability. Spoiler alertt. It’s the mesh part that’s hard to wash after the time with the dirt but mostly, the mud just washes of. It also has a wide toe area. I know this is a clincher for those with wider foot.
The biggest feature I look out on trail shoes is the traction. Hard outsole for soft surface is the usual mix though I have shoes that are have soft rubbery soles that have less traction on dirt but can have a better grip on paved and rocky surfaces. It’s always a pros and cons analysis depending on the route profile. So Nike Wildhorse 6 has hard spokes for traction. Since it’s rainy season, most of my runs are on wet, wild and muddy surfaces. I’m happy with the grip and traction over muddy and almost different trail surfaces. I also like that unlike other trail shoes, it’s not much of a mud grabber. The weakness probably of the wildhorse is on wet rocky and paved surfaces as it can be a bit slippery. I guess it’s just a small compromise as it has good grip on most surfaces.
On the average, I go for 10-12 easy kilometers on back to back days on weekends. I like that it feels soft on the feet. I feel less wear and tear because of the cushioning and foamy midsole support. I guess that’s the added weight compared to just 8 oz for Nike Kiger 6. Wildhorse 6 would be a good training shoes or even racing shoes for longer distance as it can really reduce wear and tear on you feet, legs and knees.
Overall, I’m impressed with the Wildhorse 6 as it’s something I’d feel comfortable with the grip over most surfaces. Though, I might opt for hybrid shoes on routes with more paved and rocky surfaces. How impressed I am with Nike Trail, I also got myself a Nike Terra Kiger 6, but that my friend is a story for some other time.
Note: This is not a sponsored post.