“Tunability,” seen in the customizable fit of the SL:PDX, plays into the weight of Speedland’s shoe as well. The company provides two different measurements based on whether or not the wearer elects to modify the SL:PDX’s trimmable outsole. Fully intact, the SL:PDX tips the scales at a stated 292 g / 10.3 oz. With the entire outsole stripped down from 7 mm lugs to 4 mm, the shoe conveniently slips beneath 10 ounces at 281 g / 9.9 oz. Weight will also fluctuate a few grams either way if the removable carbon plates are left in. I predict most folks will have reservations about irreversibly clipping off significant chunks of a shoe this expensive, so for our purposes, we’ll assume the standard weight.
If you noticed in the previous fit section, there’s a shortage of models mentioned to serve as comparisons to the SL:PDX; it really is that original. Add that Speedland endorses their shoe for runs up to 100 miles (i.e., broadly, any ultra distance), comparison becomes even more challenging. However, given its claim as, “the world’s first hyper-performance trail shoe,” I’m inclined to place the SL:PDX among other high-end, plated, performance models. With that in mind, here’s where it weighs in:
*All stated weights are based on a US Men’s size 9 unless indicated otherwise.
252 g / 8.9 oz – Hoka Tecton X
260 g / 9.2 oz (Size 8.5) – Craft CTM Ultra Carbon
292 g / 10.3 oz (281 g / 9.9 oz trimmed) – Speedland SL:PDX
295 g / 10.4oz – Salomon S/LAB Ultra 3
295 g / 10.4 oz – On Cloud Ultra
295 g / 10.4 oz – TNF Vectiv Flight
330 g / 11.6 oz – La Sportiva Cyklon
329 g / 11.6 oz — adidas TERREX Agravic Ultra
For all that Speedland is doing with the SL:PDX, its weight is impressive. Shoes too feature-laden often suffer from overengineering; despite their luster on paper, they can be unwieldy in practice. The SL:PDX manages to carry its constitutive parts well while not being too wispy. However, grams / ounces don’t reveal much about how weight is distributed. On foot, it only took a few miles to notice how bottom-heavy they felt. The SL:PDX’s outsole is made from a single piece of dense rubber, so the shoe can feel unbalanced at times. While I eventually adapted to the SL:PDX’s proportions, it made me reconsider doing any kind of workouts on technical terrain while wearing them.