Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro title image.jpg

Five Ten Trail Cross Mid Pro

Words Pete Roggeman
Photos Deniz Merdano
Date Jun 2, 2021
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Earlier this year I reviewed the Five Ten Trailcross XT. Like the Five Tens most riders are familiar with, they offer best-in-class grip, but unlike typical models from the flat shoe heavyweight, they share similarities to Adidas' outdoor brand Terrex's trail runners (or hiking 'shoes') making them lighter and very comfortable to walk in. This made them feel better on my feet when hike-a-biking and while I haven't found typical Five Tens like Impacts or Freeriders to be uncomfortable, the Trailcross' light weight and running shoe-inspired last was a cut above.

What I failed to report in that review, because it was a problem I discovered later, is that the neoprene ankle gusset - a great feature designed to keep out loam, rocks, and other debris - was sized too wide for my average ankles. The effect of this was that instead of keeping all that stuff out of your shoe and avoiding peddles and loam trapped in your shoes, it did the opposite, acting like a funnel, which increased the amount of that stuff that found its way into my shoes. This trait wasn't as noticeable in the winter months for some reason as it was when things dried out a bit - fluffier loam, more dust...I'm not sure why, but as January gave way to February and March, it became clear that every ride was going to end in needing to tip the shoes upside down to empty them out - if I made it that far, because frankly there were several rides where I had to stop partway through to eject trail debris from my shoes. I was otherwise impressed with the shoes but this trait makes them far from ideal if your ride conditions include loam or other bits of trail being sprayed towards your shoes or ankles.

Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro3.jpg

Two things separate the Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro from its lower cut siblings (the mid-height Trailcross XT and low-cut Trailcross SL): other than the higher cut and tighter ankle gusset, it's the d30 ankle protection.

Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro1.jpg

As you can see, the ankle protection is not thick, so it's low-profile enough to be out of sight and mind, but it will take the edge off a stinging blow.

Differences between the Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro vs Trailcross XT

The shoe I'd wanted to test all along was the Trailcross Mid Pro, seen here. Despite the name, it is actually closer to a high top, and thankfully the neoprene cuff on the Mid Pros is more snug than on the XTs. Unlike the Trailcross XT, the Mid Pros do a very effective job of keeping out all of the stuff your front tire kicks up at your feet and ankles, leaving your feet protected and comfortable.

The other notable difference between the Trailcross XT and the higher-cut Mid Pro is the d30-clad protection zone on the inside and outside of each ankle. This feature will be one that appeals more to some than others but is thankfully thin and not really noticeable, so even if you have no use for ankle protection whatsoever, you'll never notice it. Unless you need it - then you'll be thankful. Those with bulbous ankle protuberances no doubt have memories of very painful contact with cranks, the occasional chain stay, or something on the outboard side like a stump or rock if you're really unlucky. No matter what it hits, your medial malleolus (malleoli?) is especially sensitive and that shit hurts. I've hit it over the years, and a little extra protection in this case is a nice touch, especially because it doesn't add bulk or weight that you feel.

Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro2.jpg

The sole of the Mid Pros features Five Ten's Stealth Phantom rubber, with the familiar dotty pattern throughout, and ridges at the heel and toe which provide great traction when hike-a-biking or bird-dogging that next steep line.

Beyond those differences, the Trailcross Mid Pro is basically identical to the XT, but I'd recommend avoiding the XT due to the issue with the ankle gaiter, unless you have wide (c)ankles or aren't concerned about stuff getting in. The idea of a high top shoe for spring and summer riding may not be that attractive in hot climates, but the neoprene cuff is thin and perforated and the sock that encloses your foot, as well as the material on the forefoot of the shoe, are both mesh, so the shoe breathes very well.

What is odd to me is that the Trailcross Mid Pro has the ankle protection, but like the XT, it has none around the toe, which would be a great addition for V2 (hint hint Five Ten). I can understand having one or even two minimal versions of this shoe for bike packing and trail riding, but a high top version seems aimed at more aggressive riding, particularly with the ankle padding, and the rest of the shoe doesn't really have the same design direction, and although I'll admit it's worked well for me in all kinds of terrain, I have tagged my toes a few times and it reminded me that they're unprotected. Despite that, as with the XTs, the Mid Pros are comfortable, light, dry quickly and stick to the pedals like gum to a sidewalk. If you can forego the lack of toe bumpers, the Five Ten Trailcross Mid Pro are a great bet for all but the coldest and wettest days on the bike*.

*size them for thick or waterproof socks, though, and you can take on cold and/or wet least until Five Ten released the Gore-Tex version of this shoe, rumoured to be landing this August.

Five Ten inventory seems to be more available recently, and the Trailcross Mid Pro is available for $170 US at Jenson (limited sizing) or Worldwide Cyclery (good size selection) either of those will ship to Canada, or $220 CAD from Bicicletta or as always, check with your local bike shop.

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+4 AJ Barlas Pete Roggeman Tremeer023 Poz
hongeorge  - June 2, 2021, 4:13 a.m.

You had me at "Gore-Tex version of this shoe, rumoured to be landing this August."

+1 hongeorge
Pete Roggeman  - June 2, 2021, 5:20 p.m.

I hope they're ready with lots of inventory...every time we talk about these shoes, the GTX version comes up, and everyone is keen. They may need to take pre-orders...


+3 Pete Roggeman Tremeer023 Poz
Allen Lloyd  - June 2, 2021, 7:34 a.m.

I have a pair of the low tops and absolutely love them for summer rides.  They breath great and still have good grip.  My only issue is the sole wears out pretty fast, due to the rubber being thinner than other riding shoes.  The higher top and better gaiter are a great idea, my low tops grab every pebble from the ground and fling them right into the shoe.


+1 Tremeer023
useport80  - June 2, 2021, 8:02 a.m.

i've been on the trailcross xt's for the last year and they are so far my fav shoe in terms of grip and breathability. i can't wear them in winter cuz you can really feel the cold wind coming into the front.

i got the mid pros 2 months ago and i ordered the same size i did for my xts and they fit differently. something is up with sizing. im not sure what it is but my pinky toes were getting hammered while riding. not by hitting objects on the trail but just normal riding. it gets to a point where it's unbearable and i have to stop. i initially thought the shoes had to break in, so i wore them 4-5 times, and each time my pinky toes were destroyed. i do have wider EE feet so these shoes probably aren't meant for me. i just found it odd that the sizing was different with each shoe. i ended up returning the mid pros and just got new xts.


+1 Pete Roggeman
Hollytron  - June 2, 2021, 9:13 a.m.

Pete, I hope this does not cross any personal lines, but could we get an ankle measurement? I love the idea of these but likely have the same problem.

Pete Roggeman  - June 2, 2021, 11:40 a.m.

Haha! 25 cms around the ankle bone. To reiterate: if your ankles are sized like mine, the Mid Pro's cuff works perfectly, but the XT is too loose. If you have...cankle-y ankles, the Mid Pro will probably still work well - it's not like the cuff is stiff or tight - but the XT might also work for you. Hope that helps.


+1 Pete Roggeman
airwreck  - June 2, 2021, 11:07 a.m.

I got the first version of these a few years ago and found them a bit too light duty and flexy compared to the Impact High that I am accustomed to but always looking for an improved high top. Few weeks ago I got the new Impact Mid Pros and am happy with the improvements made that I've been waiting for. Wide toe box, kind of water proof, gusseted tongue, lighter. Couple hot spots since they don't have the padding they used to.

Here's some of my collection of high tops, missing from the photo is my Freerider Highs. I don't expect the new Impact Mids to be very durable since I do a lot of trail work in them. The materials look very similar to some of the other new brands of shoes that have come out recently.

Regarding fit, the shoes on the right were the same size I've always worn but these were the grey version and they must have shrank when they got wet and became really tight. Went up a half size, the ones on the left, and my feet were swimming in them. Went back down to my original size in the new Pro's and they are perfect. They also added a heel loop so getting them on is much easier now.

Pete Roggeman  - June 2, 2021, 11:43 a.m.

Nice collection! Thanks for the sizing insights. For sure the Trailcross has a flexier sole...good for some, not as much for others. I've liked them so far, but I also have some Impact Pros that I love. On the shore, we don't generally pedal long distances, so I don't notice differences in sole stiffness as much as others might. At the same time, they both work for me on the way down: I don't find either one too flexy or too stiff. YMMV.


airwreck  - June 3, 2021, 1:56 p.m.

Apparently I'm "heavy on my feet", that's how my wife describes my surfing, so the sole stiffness thing for me is a downhilling necessity. Long downhills get painful with a flexible sole. Also starting to think the narrow toe box thing has contributed to my bunions. That said I do like the Trailcross, and would likely pick up a pair of goretex ones.


Sylvain Gravel  - June 2, 2021, 11:36 a.m.

I have found the sole on these to be a bit brittle.  I'm no my second season but last year I didn't ride as much as I'd like because of a cracked frame.  At any rate, my pedals have dug a hole in the sole within the first season.  Now Chromag pedal pins are long and nasty but I would expect the sole to cope better.  With that said, I'll soon refill the hole with Shoe Goo and they'll be good to go for another while.


+1 Pete Roggeman
KavuRider  - June 2, 2021, 2:23 p.m.

Just ordered a pair of these from Jenson. I dig the look, hope they perform just as well!

Pete Roggeman  - June 2, 2021, 5:21 p.m.

I think you'll be happy!


aaaaaaaaaaargh  - June 2, 2021, 4:24 p.m.

I wanted a pair of high-top mountain bike shoes for a while and was excited when 5.10 dropped this new line. I was trying to hold out for the waterproof GTX model, but they were delayed until this August and my 5.10 Freerider Contacts weren't going to hold out that long, so bought a pair of the mids.

I wear size 13, and they feel a bit spacious with thin cycling socks but the fit is more than roomy enough for a pair of waterproof socks, so I think that will be enough for the occasional wet ride.

I was a little concerned toe protection might not be sufficient in these, but the toe cap feels like it will match what the Contacts provided. Hasn't been tested yet, though.

One thing I didn't expect switching to this shoe from other 5.10s is that the midsole feels noticeably thicker than the 5.10 Freerider Contacts they replaced. I tossed those old shoes as soon as I got these so couldn't compare directly, but I measured my height in both these and some 5.10 Aescents, and these seemed to add about a centimeter. I just don't feel as connected on these, so I'm going to get a second pair of shoes for rides that are more about going fast down hill and save these for adventures that might involve more walking or benefit from the ankle protection.


KavuRider  - June 5, 2021, 6:33 p.m.

Got mine yesterday, first ride today. Very happy with these! The ankle cuff kept rocks out like it should.

Definitely 5.10 sticky. Haven't ridden flat pedals for a while but it all came back to me.

They did feel a bit flexier than I am used to. Not a bad thing, but I remember my Impacts were stiffer.

They are awesome for hike-a-bike situations. NSMB is right once again!


johnny2shoes  - June 7, 2021, 2:23 a.m.

I've been using the five tennies for wet weather, hike-a-bike situations. Technically a climbing approach shoe but same s1 sole on their bike shoes. i'd recommend them. Full suede outer so does a good job against the wet,


Vik Banerjee  - June 9, 2021, 7:27 a.m.

My initial impressions of the Trailcross SLs were not great. Too flexible. Not very stable for HAB in technical terrain. Didn't work well with my usual after-market insoles. So I put them back in their box for the winter. Over that time I ended up wearing a number of really flexible shoes for other non-bikey activities. A month ago I hauled the TC SL's out again to give them another shot and liked them a lot more. I skipped the after-market insoles [made the soles more stable/fit better] and my feet had adapted a lot better to shoes without much structure/support. So the TC SL's are back in rotation as my non-technical riding shoes and they'll get bikepacked a bunch this summer.

While my opinion has improved the fact they are very flexible hasn't changed. I wouldn't want to wear them for pounding downhill on my MTB all day. I'd want something with a stiffer sole for that, but for less demanding riding that includes wet feet/creek crossings and more all around riding they are looking promising.....assuming you don't need after-market insoles and can adapt to the lack of support.

To prevent getting debris in your shoes you can use mini-gaiters like these ones. They work well with pretty much any shoe and you can ditch them when you don't need them which is nice.


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