Saucony Peregrine 7 Overview
Over the past few years, the market for trail running shoes has exploded. The choices are endless and there seems to be an ever-expanding stream of new models with new features.
Living in the High Rockies, when I look for trail runners, I am pretty much seeking a shoe that can do everything; a Jack-of-all-shoes, if you will. I want to be able to backpack, hike, and run in them interchangeably. They must provide comfort and a bit of support without missing a beat as far as traction, stability, and long term quality is concerned. And I have a strong preference for a traditional lacing system.
I was stoked to test out the Saucony Peregrine 7 for all of those reasons. They’ve been touted as some of the best trail runners out there, and in this highly competitive market, that says a lot. The Peregrine 7 features Saucony’s PWRTRAC outsole, a grippy and aggressive traction system that can carry one through most terrains. They are cushioned moderately, creating a comfy fit, while retaining the sensitivity a true trail runner would desire. They’re also quite light, weighing in at about 8.4 ounces per shoe. That’s a big bonus as far as comfort and traveling fast over long miles are concerned. Could these be the trail runners I’ve been looking for all my life?
See the full Saucony Peregrine 7 review below.
Saucony Peregrine 7 Star Rating
The Saucony Peregrine 7 is a neutral shoe with grit, and the outsoles are tough with enough grip to stop you in your tracks. Think approach shoe lite.
While we often give out awards and Picks for gear, we won’t be for shoes. After testing many shoes and finding the right fit for each member of our team, we realized that a shoe is simply too subjective to unequivocally recommend to anyone.
Our advice is to know what brands of shoe fit you generally by trying them on in store, and then look for excellent models, which we review here. Look in our specifications table to see if the shoe generally fits wide, narrow, or standard-sized feet. There are a lot of differing elements among shoes, but this is the one that matters right off the bat.
Update: We tested the Peregrine 7 in 2017/2018, and Saucony released the updated Peregrine 8 in late 2018. The new shoe is very similar, but features a new PWRFOA midsole that adds some rebound, 6 mm outsole lugs, a slightly thicker stack height (3 mm thicker), and a tiny bit more weight. Overall a very similar shoe with a new midsole. As always with shoes, we suggest you try it on to see if it feels good.
Saucony Peregrine 7 Specifications
|Feature Type||Feature Specs||What This Means|
|Weight||8.4 oz. (238 g) per shoe||A very light trail runner. This is for a women’s shoe, so an average men’s will be a bit heavier. Light on the feet means less strain on your legs.|
|General Fit||Standard||The Peregrine 7 has a standard fit in general, not crazy wide or crazy narrow.|
|Cushion||Low/Medium||The cushion is just between low and medium at 21.5 mm. This is great for runners who want to feel the ground and get some support, but not too much.|
|Heel-Toe Drop||4 mm||This is a low heel-toe drop. It’s more than a zero drop, but not nearly as high as a standard shoe or boot.|
|Stack Height||21.5 mm heel, 17.5 mm forefoot||The Peregrine 7 has low to medium cushion.|
|Arch Type||Neutral (Normal Arch)||The arch is neutral on this shoe.|
|Rock Plate?||Yes||The Peregrine 7 has a rock plate, which helps when running on hard, rocky ground. Also helps the shoe last longer.|
|Lace System||Traditional, Flat||The laces are a traditional tie method, and lay flat, true to most trail runners.|
|Sizes Available||7-14 for Men, 5-12 for Women, with half sizes||Most sizes for most people.|
|Manufacturer Warranty||Not Listed||Saucony doesn’t explicitly say how long their warranty policy lasts. They do say: If you are not satisfied with your order, simply ship your item back to us free of charge, or return it to a corporate Saucony store near you.|
|Retail Price||$120||A premium price for an excellent trail runner.|
Gear Review of the Saucony Peregrine 7
Origins: Easing You In
This autumn, I took a road trip with my husband to some rad and exciting places. Carson National Forest in New Mexico, where the mountains are bigger than you’d expect and the deserts are vast. The San Juan Mountains near Silverton in colorful Colorado, a place I’ve deemed my second home. And the Moab area of Utah, the most alien landscape I know: dirty, red, and wild.
We’d been preparing for this trip for a few weeks by choosing which hikes to do, runs to take, and where to pitch the tent each night. We went through lists of what gear would be best to use and what gear we should bring along “just in case” — all the usual prep two gear-heads set on having an epic time go through.
When it came time to picking out the most appropriate and versatile footwear to bring along, I chose the Saucony Peregrine 7. For hiking, backpacking and trail running. I’d worn these around my home and on some simple mountain trails; they did seem like a do-it-all shoe, so I figured, why not?
Revelation: The Moment I Knew
In New Mexico, on the second day of our trip, we were camped along the Rio Grande River on the edge of a large gorge. It was very beautiful. This inspired us to go for a run down the gorge, to the river, then back up to camp. We figured it would be a handful of miles with around 1,500 feet of elevation drop to then regain. This, for us, is a pretty solid run.
On the descent, it became apparent that the ground wouldn’t make this easy; it was a desert after all. The sand and rock shifted constantly on the steep trail, and the switchbacking was sharp and abrupt. It was one of those situations where the drop-in was more challenging than the ascent. A fall would have been painful and potentially really dangerous.
In many trail runners, I would have felt extremely apprehensive to run on this terrain. Walking, sure. But pretty much controlling a free fall for miles? You really need to trust the shoes you’re wearing in order for that to feel comfortable. I’ve definitely had some accidents with other shoes in this same situation.
Yet almost immediately, I realized that the Peregrine 7 could more than handle it. I very rarely lost any traction with the loose ground, they were delightfully responsive to where I placed pressure, and the laces held tight. On the ascent, I was pleased with the protection this shoe provided, as I hit my toes on rocks endlessly and never felt pain.
On that one trial run, the Peregrine 7 performed better than I imagined it could have. Better than most shoes I have run in. It excited me and got me very amped to try it out on every trail this road trip would take us to.
I must admit, for over a decade I was a barefoot runner. It was something I was passionate about, and, in so many ways, it helped me to become a better runner. I would still love to be running barefoot, but I’ve got a case of sports arthritis in my left foot that makes barefoot running, and even minimalist running, very complicated and painful.
So when I look for a running shoe, I am looking for something responsive, sensitive, and neutral. The Saucony Peregrine 7 is a neutral shoe with a normal arch. The heel-toe drop is 4mm, and it has a heel stack height of 21.5mm, which is a relatively low stack compared to many other trail runners that provide a ton of cushion. These stats are great for someone like me: A runner looking for more protection and support than a minimal shoe would give, without going overboard.
As I mentioned, a single female shoe weighs around 8.4 ounces, making these very lightweight for a trail runner. This is something that helps to keep your feet sensitive to the terrain you’ll be running on, hiking on, or backpacking on. It felt great to be connected to the ground, even though I’ve got a sole between it and my feet
The lacing system on the Peregrine 7 is a traditional lace. This is something I love. I find it easier to customize to my foot and they seem to hold tight longer than say, a BOA system. If you’re like me and have crazy feet that are a little misshapen, a traditional lace is simply going to give a better fit.
The outsoles of the Peregrine 7 are extremely grippy and responsive. I would almost compare them to an approach shoe as far as grip is concerned, although they have a much burlier tread, making them great for gravel or talus.
My feet are narrow, with a couple unexpected curves due to arthritis. I have high, strong arches and generally am a true women’s 10.5. I found the Peregrine 7 to run slightly small as far as length. The width was standard and felt comfortable.
This particular model, the Peregrine 7, has a reconstructed heel that is meant to break in faster and cause less pain. I found it to be over-padded and cut very low, something that made me mildly uncomfortable when I first began using them. Be sure to go half a size up in these, and perhaps a whole size up if you’re on the edge of sizes.
As always, if you can try them on in store first, do it.
I’ve worn these on hikes and trail runs, along with a few road runs. I’m pleased as a pickle to say they’ve held up extremely well. The soles look almost new and the stitching is still… stitched.
A fun fact about my feet is that my toes curve up, which leads to a problem I bump into with most mesh-upper shoes: the toe box starts to wear out and tear surprisingly fast. This held true for the Peregrine 7, and after around 100 miles of use, a tiny hole started to form right over my big toe.
Your experience will vary, depending on how curved (or not) your toes are.
On the most recent trail run I took the Saucony Peregrine 7 on, I went to an area full of boulder hopping, gritty sand, and shifting rock. I did this with a lot of confidence, knowing that I would have no issues dealing with slipping or losing my footing. This is due to the PWRTRAC outsole, a grippy, aggressive, and burly sole that holds up to much abuse. These soles look almost new after miles of wear on rough and sharp ground.
In Carson National Forest, I used these in deep, fresh snow and found them to have excellent traction. Even on icy patches, slipping was not much of an issue. The soles of these shoes are my favorite thing about them.
The uppers on the Peregrine 7 are built in the classic, standard running shoe style. Mesh uppers with a cushioned and full mesh tongue. They aren’t waterproof or water resistant, but are extremely quick drying.
That said, after many months of testing my big toe broke through the upper material. This will happen to most trail runners at some point, but I felt it was too early on this one. I also got some blisters on my upper heel, and feel it has too much padding.
Trail Running vs Hiking and Backpacking
I like these shoes for trail running much more than I like them for hiking. Primarily because when I hike, I crave the ankle support of a boot, which is true for some folks, not so much for others.
The aggressive and sticky soles add confidence to my running that many shoes do not. Where they truly shine is above tree line; on talus, jumping rock to rock and cruising up steep, loose hills. Because of their light weight, they are great for agility and snappy movements. The responsive quality is perfect for extreme descents, where stopping on a dime is the difference between a great run or eating some serious shit. Living in the High Rockies, I seriously appreciate the Peregrine 7’s ability to stay stable on ice as well. Because you truly never know when ice will present itself.
Due to the solid traction, I’d say this will work for those who want to hike and backpack in them, as long as you don’t expect (or need) ankle support.
No shoe is perfect. And such is the case with the Saucony Peregrine 7.
I find the heel to be pretty uncomfortable and had some major issues with blistering. The heel is simply cut too low. This restructured heel was new to the Peregrine 7, so I would be curious to try previous or future models; they may work better for me. In any case, I found that I could tape up my heels before using these shoes and it took care of the rubbing issue. The other problem the low-cut heel presented was feeling moderately unstable when I began using them. After my first couple runs, this was no longer something I thought about. But it definitely took getting used to.
Your experience will be unique to your foot, so, once again, it is recommended to try these shoes on before purchasing, or to purchase from an online retailer that has a good return policy.
I am a runner who depends heavily on my shoes to keep me from taking spills on loose terrain. The Saucony Peregrine 7 does just that. The outsoles are strong and tough with enough grip to stop you in your tracks. You can also climb trees in them and do some light scrambling. Think “approach shoe lite.” If you’d like a neutral shoe with a lot of grit that comes in wonderful colors and holds up to a fair amount of abuse, you should absolutely check these out!
Where to Buy Saucony Peregrine 7
As of 2018, Saucony released the Peregrine 8, the next edition of this shoe. Shoe companies update their models every 6-12 months, so it’s hard to keep up. The Peregrine 7 was award-winning and got a ton of praise — time will tell with the Peregrine 8. For now you can find the Peregrine 7 for a discount, and they are great shoes.
Compare Saucony Peregrine 7 prices for men and women below.]