Comfortable, high-performing trail-running shoes perfect for runners who rack up high mileage on a mixture of sealed surfaces and reasonably hard-packed trails.
Women’s specific design
Stretch lace cover
Traction for trails not hills
Fewer color options in the women’s range than the men’s
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Dynafit Ultra 100 women’s: first impressions
Dynafit have designed a new and very comfortable last for the Dynafit Ultra 100, creating one of the best trail running shoes for women currently on the market (it was one of our selections for the Advnture Awards 2021). The shoe also offers high levels of cushioning, and it is aimed at runners who train over long distances.
The “Pomoca” outsole – a material with its feet in the ski industry – also provides grip for a range of surfaces, although I would recommend them for hard-packed trails, rather than muddy hills.
The heel-to-toe drop is a nice, neutral 6mm, and a “Heel Preloader” gives good support and fit around the heel while also offering comfort thanks to a lower and softer profile on the back of the shoe (see also: how should trail running shoes fit?).
The durability of the upper part of the shoe is enhanced by a rubber toe and heel bumpers, while the lacing system is hidden beneath an in-built stretch cover that provides protection against dirt and pebbles, and also helps prevent the laces coming undone.
• RRP: Standard $140 (US) / £135 (UK) GTX $170 (US) / £170
• Weight (per shoe): Standard 270g/9.5oz GTX 290g / 10.2oz
• Drop: 6mm
• Materials: Pomoca outsole, mesh upper covering laces, GTX membrane in more expensive option
• Sizes: 3 - 9
• Colors: Fluro, Pink & Black / Poseidon Silvretta / Poseidon Super Mint
• Compatibility: Longer distance trail running
Dynafit Ultra 100 women’s: on the trails
Dynafit have put some thought into the women’s version of this shoe, which is considerably lighter than the men’s (by around 40g per shoe) and has a narrower fit, including in the forefoot and heel. There are only three colorways for women, compared to five in the men’s range, but they are all bright and beautiful.
If you like a trail-running shoe with cushioning, you will love the fit and comfort levels of the Dynafit Ultra 100. It is aimed at people who train across long distances, and it does facilitate miles and miles of easy-going running. And if you still need convincing you need specialist footwear for trails rather than co-opting your usual runners for the task, check out: trail running shoes vs running shoes: what are the differences?
It is suggested that the shoe will suit runners accessing a range of surfaces, but having tested it out on a variety of terrain types, we recommend it for use on harder-packed trails rather than mud and wet rocks. Where this trail shoe comes into its own is when you need to transition from trails to tarmac because the cushioning is great for both.
The added detail of lacing system hidden beneath an in-built stretch cover is a bonus because it keeps out annoying dirt and stones, to an extent. Obviously, debris can still get in via the ankle area.
The uppers have enhanced durability thanks to a rubber toe and heel bumpers. They also look really modern and funky.
Note that the shoes are short – I recommend going a whole size up from your normal running shoe size.
These shoes have become my go-to for winter trail runs on firmer surfaces.
Fiona Russell is a widely published adventure journalist and blogger, better known as Fiona Outdoors. She is based in Scotland and is an all-round outdoors enthusiast with favorite activities including trail running, mountain walking, mountain biking, road cycling, triathlon and skiing (both downhill and backcountry). Aside from her own adventures, Fiona's biggest aim is to inspire others to enjoy getting outside and exploring, especially through her writing. She is also rarely seen without a running skort! Find out more at Fiona Outdoors.