The Saloman Ellipse GTX vs. The Original Version
Since our original review of the Ellipse GTX, Salomon updated this hiking shoe. This new version costs $10 more and features updates to the midsole, lacing system, leather upper, and toe protection. Check out the side-by-side comparison below, followed by details on each change.
Here's a summary update of the between the Ellipse GTX and the previous version:
- Upper Material — The new model features waterproof split suede leather layering on top of the mesh upper, replacing the PU coated leather found on the original.
- Toe Cap and Protection — The redesign featured in the Ellipse includes a taller, more narrow toe cap.
- Updated Midsole — From the exterior, the midsole of this new version was updated. We're waiting on a response from Salomon about exactly what changed here.
- Updated Laces — The new lacing system has thicker laces. The uppermost eyelet is now a plastic hole that goes through the upper, which allows for more variation in lacing technique compared to the previous eyelet, which was an external loop.
- Price — The list price of the Ellipse is $130, an increase of $10 on the original.
Until our reviewer completes a new, comprehensive review of this new model, the text and assessments below reflect the original Ellipse GTX.
Hands-on Review of the original Salomon Ellipse GTX
The Salomon Ellipse GTX
is made with a PU-coated leather and mesh upper, and a Gore-Tex waterproof liner. The sole is Salomon's
non-marking Contagrip rubber.
Heading into the canyons for the day in the Ellipses. These lightweight shoes are a great day hiker on moderate terrain.
See the chart below for a comparison between the Ellipse
and the other shoes we tested.
We had a hard time getting a good fit in this shoe, which ultimately affected its comfort for us. We originally ordered it in a women's size 10, which ended up being too long. We sized down to a 9.5, which fit us better lengthwise, but found the shoe really confining width wise with zero room for toe splay. Considering that we have narrow feet and usually have the opposite problem, we were surprised at how confining the interior of the shoe was. And as much as it was tight in the toe, we had some heel lift issues in the rear. This shoe was just not meant for our particularly foot. But even putting all that aside and going purely on the comfort of the sole, we still found the Ellipse
wanting. There is nowhere near the same amount of cushion in this shoe as the Hoka One One Tor Summit
, and after trying and loving such a comfortable pair it left us wanting more out of the other models in this review.
These shoes offered adequate support, though the arch was slightly flat. As we mentioned above, we did have a bit of heel slipping as well. We did like the adjustability of the lacing system, however you might have a hard time keeping the toe box loose while still tightening up the top. If so you can always pull the laces out and retie them skipping the first eyelets.
Coming down a steep and loose trail in the Ellipses. This shoe gave us adequate support for a variety of terrain.
The rubber on this shoe is soft and sticky, and the lugs did a good job gripping bare rock, but they are not as aggressive as some other models.
These shoes use Salomon's
"Contagrip" rubber soles. The multi-directional lugs have some spacing for shedding mud and rocks, but the tread is not as thick or aggressive as some other models, like the Oboz Sawtooth Low BDry
or the Vasque Vasque Talus Trek Low UltraDry - Women's
. The rubber is fairly sticky though, and the flexible toe allowed us to scramble around on steep slabs without fear of slipping.
We liked the traction on bare rock. The sticky rubber and flexible toe let us scramble up and down slabs with ease.
At 1 pound 10 ounces, the Salomon Ellipse GTX
was only an ounce heavier than the lightest shoe in this review, the Ahnu Sugarpine WP - Women's
. If you're looking for a pair that won't weigh you down, these are a great choice.
Water beads off of the nylon mesh uppers that are overlaid with thermoplastic urethane (fancy plastic for added protection and durability). The textiles are water resistant and the waterproof Gore-Tex lining is like a waterproof bootie. While the upper resists saturation, the ankle is lower cut than some other models, like the Hoka One One
shoes that we tested. While it's not much (half an inch or so), sometimes that's all it takes for an errant splash to enter your shoe.
You can hang out in a pool of water and not get wet feet in these shoes.
Lightweight construction often compromises the sturdiness of materials that make a hiking shoe durable, but that wasn't the case with this model. We bushwacked in these shoes through low, prickly bushes, and not a single mark was left on them. We wore them through streams and mud and dusty trails, and they continued to look practically new. The nylon mesh upper and abrasion resistant lining protects the shoes so that no matter how many times you take your shoes off, they lining doesn't pill or tear. A synthetic toe cap protects the toes but also protects the front of the shoe from wearing out, and after months of hiking, the soles look hardly worn.
This pair of shoes has been worn regularly for almost a year and they still look brand new!
These shoes are best for day hiking with a light pack or for those who like to move fast on the trail. While we don't feel like there was enough support and comfort to use the shoes for overnight trips with a heavy pack, they are still a great option for long day hikes.
Heading out for a day hike in the "backyard." If you love to get out for regular walks in nature, these shoes are a great choice.
Just a few years ago, this $120 shoe was one of the most expensive shoes that we tested. It's still $120, but a lot of other models have gotten more expensive, including our Best Buy winner, the Merrell Moab 2 Ventilator - Women's
. We even tested a $210 pair this year, the Lowa Renegade II GTX Lo Women's
. Considering that you are getting a Gore-Tex-lined waterproof shoe for this price, we think it's a pretty good value overall.
While the Salomon Ellipse GTX
has won our Editors' Choice award in past reviews, some of the newer options on the market have overshadowed it. We loved the comfort of the Hoka One One Tor Summit WP
and preferred the support and traction of the Oboz Sawtooth Low BDry
, our new Editors' Choice award winner. The Ellipse
is still a great option though, particularly for those that prefer a running shoe feel on the trail. They are also reasonably priced at only $120 for a Gore-Tex shoe.
has released an Ellipse 2
line, but continues to make the popular Ellipse
. Some of their other options include the Ellipse 2
($130), Ellipse 2 Aero
($100) and the Ellipse 2 Mid LTR GTX