In the past year, no trail-running shoe has received more attention than the Saucony ProGrid Peregrine. Released in early 2011, the shoe is built on the same base as the highly praised Saucony ProGrid Kinvara and updated Kinvara 2 (*Est. $90) . Compared to more traditional trail-running shoes, the Peregrine plays off popular minimalist running trends by being much lighter and sitting far closer to the ground. It weighs just 10.1 ounces (men's) -- light for a trail shoe -- and has a mere 4 mm heel-to-toe drop. Reviewers say this allows runners to better react to the terrain than heavier, bulkier models. Plus, the shoe encourages a midfoot strike. Despite the Peregrine's more minimalist feel, runners say the outsole provides stellar protection; multidirectional lugs help ensure a stable foot-plant on even the muddiest terrain. While this shoe could be classified as a lightweight trail shoe, reviewers say it's well suited to most runners. It's incredibly comfortable, provides plenty of support and handles well on a variety of terrains. Some reviewers say the mesh upper isn't very breathable (problematic in hot climates), but the shoe is light enough that it didn't bother most testers.
The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine has received major attention and praise from several of the industry's top publications and experts. Runner's World selected it as the recipient of the coveted Editor's Choice award in the April 2011 bi-annual trail-running shoe guide. Running Times, which doesn't rate shoes, chose it as one of its top new trail shoes. In addition, Outside, Shape, Women's Running Magazine and Canadian Running all selected the Peregrine as a top trail shoe in their annual guides. Since the shoe was recently released, there are few user-generated reviews; in this case, professional reviews are far more insightful.
1. Runner's World
Runner's World's shoe reviews are considered the gold standard, and Warren Greene and Martyn Shorten are largely viewed as two of the most well-versed experts in the market. Nine models are selected in the Spring 2011 installment. The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine earns the coveted Editor's Choice distinction for its stellar traction, low profile, minimal weight and stability. One wear-tester calls it "just what a trail shoe should be."
Review: Ground Breakers, Warren Greene and Martyn Shorten, April 2011
Running Times is a strong source for running shoe reviews. Here, 12 new trail shoes are divided into four categories: barefoot-style, minimally cushioned, lightweight cushioned and protective/durable. The Peregrine makes the grade in the lightweight cushioned category, with the reviewer saying it moves in the direction of on-trend minimalist shoes but offers more protection and cushioning. While the review is positive, Running Times doesn't compare or rate shoes, saying that selecting proper footwear is a highly individualized process.
Review: 12 New Trail Shoes Reviewed, Brian Metzler, June 2011
3. Women's Running Magazine
Sixteen wear-tested winners in a variety of categories are picked in this Spring 2011 shoe review from Women's Running Magazine. Each model was tested by several runners, and the article features a brief description of the benefits of each shoe and tester comments. The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine is one of two trail shoes selected. Wear-testers praise its comfortable fit and light weight; they also appreciate the multidirectional lugs, which make for a secure foot plant.
Review: Spring 2011 Shoe Review, Jessica Sebor, Spring 2011
Thirteen shoes are selected in Shape magazine's most recent annual guide to women's athletic shoes. Models are chosen based on a variety of categories such as "Best Walking Shoes" and "Best Shoes for Fitness Classes." The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine is one of three trail shoes selected, winning the distinction of "Best Trail Running Shoe for Speed." Wear-testers say the lower profile allows runners to really feel the terrain, but that the shoe doesn't lack in the protection department.
Review: Shape's Shoe Guide 2011: Find the Best Athletic Shoes, Sarah Bowen Shea, March 2011
In Outside magazine's 2011 Summer Buyer's Guide, editors select 12 shoes as top picks for trail running shoes. Each selection is accompanied by a short editor review. The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine is said to be one of the most popular shoes in the Outside test. Editors say the shoe performs well on a large variety of terrains, and feels light and nimble but "sure-footed enough for [a] challenge."
Review: Summer Buyer's Guide, Editors of Outside, May 2011
6. Canadian Running
As in previous incarnations, Canadian Running magazine's annual trail-running shoe guide features numerous pairs of trail shoes, but there's no indication that they were tested. The Saucony ProGrid Peregrine is one of the publication's picks, with editors calling it "an outstanding trail-running shoe that delivers uncompromising performance."
Review: Making Tracks: Trail Shoe Review, Gus Alexandropoulos, April 1, 2011
Jason Mitchell, the proprietor of FeedTheHabit.com, both writes and solicits personal reviews of the latest trail-running shoes. The site's evaluations are detailed and balanced, and although a bottom line is provided on each shoe, Mitchell and friends don't rate shoes or pick favorites. Here, the Saucony ProGrid Peregrine is praised for its outstanding outsole, which can handle even the "sloppiest" terrain. Buraglio does note that the closed mesh uppers provide little ventilation.
Review: Saucony ProGrid Peregrine Trail Running Shoes Review, Donald Buraglio, April 27, 2011