Who should buy the Salomon Pulsar Trail

The Pulsar Trail is THE shoe for you if you're on the lookout for a: 

  • jack-of-all-trails that can go fast or slow, and travel short or far 
  • grippy trail shoe with top-notch protection that doesn't cost a fortune

Salomon Pulsar Trail salomon pulsar

Who should NOT buy it

The Salomon Pulsar trail is, by no means, a running shoe for summer. With its plush upper, it's a touch hot. This said, it'd be better to go for the Salomon Sense Pro 4. Want the absolute grip even on wet surfaces? The Salomon Sense Ride 4, as our expert describes, has an "insane grip." 

Salomon Pulsar Trail red upper

Whether fast or slow, you can do it with the Pulsar Trail

In the Salomon Pulsar Trail, "We get an all terrains all paces ride," remarks a long-time runner. Its energetic and snappy ride propels you forward; an expert says in this shoe, "You don't lose speed." 

Salomon Pulsar Trail ride

Think of the Salomon Sense Ride 3 or 4, but with a livelier kick to it. That's how the Pulsar Trail runs. And if you want to take it easy, it's also not harsh on the foot. 

Roll through your strides

Its rocker design "speeds up your transition," shares one reviewer. He then continues that this makes you "spend less time on the ground and more time moving forward."

Salomon Pulsar Trail midfoot

Ready for the rough terrain

The Salomon Pulsar Trail's midsole is on the denser side, which not only helps amp up its energy return; it also addresses (1) protection and (2) stability. 

Salomon Pulsar Trail cushion

On dry firm trails, a few technical rocky passages, pavement, and muddier wet trails, a runner "found a consistent, well-cushioned stable ride everywhere." Another who has weak ankles also attests to this, saying that it guides his foot well. 

With its max cushion grade stack, as described by a running shoe reviewer, it also helps tone down the harshness underfoot. He then adds that this makes the Pulsar trail "ultra worthy."  

Not the lightest but runs light

Even though it's lighter (283 grams/9.9 ounces in US men's 9) than most trail running shoes (297 grams/10.5 ounces, on average), runners still don't categorize the Salomon Pulsar Trail as one of the lightest trail running shoes available. 

Salomon Pulsar Trail weight

But they do agree that while it may not be the lightest on paper, it's quite a different story on the run. An ultrarunner even says this, "It's not heavy on the foot; it's quite nice actually." 

Secure but doesn't choke the foot

"Overly precise fitting" is a feedback from one critic that perfectly summarizes the fit of the the past Salomon trail running shoes. But this all changes with the Pulsar Trail. Yes, it's still snug. But it's no longer snug to the point that it's constricting. 

Salomon Pulsar Trail fit

Everything about the upper works well together. The padded tongue, the lacing system, and the midfoot wrap are all in sync in keeping the foot in place. What's even better is when you cinch the laces down, you won't feel any lace pressure. 

The Salomon Pulsar Trail's heel hold is fine as hell 

The heel cup is well-padded, preventing heel slips. As one trail runner puts it, it has a "solid but not overwhelming or rigid rear hold" to it. 

Salomon Pulsar Trail heel hold

Toe box has some room to offer

When your foot starts to swell, don't worry. The Salomon Pulsar Trail's to box is roomy. And what's even greater is it's not the type of spacious that's sloppy. 

Salomon Pulsar Trail toe box

Plush upper comfort

"Pretty darn plush" is how a video reviewer finds the shoe's upper. And this doesn't just amp up comfort; it also maximizes protection. "This will be a very debris-resistant upper," adds another trail runner. 

Complementing it is the toe bumper that does a great job shielding the toes from jagged rocks and roots. Now the bigger question is—is there some downside to the upper? 

Salomon Pulsar Trail toe bumper

Unfortunately, yes. With the plushness it offers comes a not-so-breathable feel. So, if you want a summer-ready trail shoe, the Pulsar Trail is a pass. 

Lasting durability and grip 

What more can you expect from a Contragrip outsole? A Salomon fan even has this to say: "I'm not concerned about the outsole of this Pulsar Trail." And he means this with regards to both grip and strength. 

It has a sticky grip to "keep you steady and safe from slippage" even on demanding trail surfaces. And even on these terrains, a trail running expert gladly reports that he's "seeing hardly any wear on the outsole." 

Salomon Pulsar Trail outsole

However, you might want to take extra caution on wet rocks. On these, the Salomon Pulsar Trail has "slipped a little bit." 

Facts / Specs

Terrain: Trail
Weight: Men 283g
Drop: Men 6mm
Arch support: Neutral
Forefoot height: Men 26.6mm
Heel height: Men 32.6mm
Pronation: Neutral Pronation / Supination / Underpronation

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Salomon Pulsar Trail video reviews

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.