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General Climbing Discussion

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another shoes question

3:31:00 PM
I have been doing some reading and I am wondering whether climbing shoes are made for specific aspects of climbing. ie these shoes for sport, these for trad, these for bouldering etc etc. Is this the case or just another aspect of marketing .

3:43:27 PM
There certainly is a big diffrence betwen styles of shoes for climbing. I will use Sportiva styles as an example as thats what i use most of the time...

(refer to )

Mega - ankle boots designed for seriusly painful endurnace crack routes where you stuff your feet inside nasty sharp places for long periods. They will be stiff as a board to take wieght off your own foot muscles.

Mythos - all round semi rigid shoe which edged ok and is comforatble on longer pitches. Shoe is not curved so wieght dosn't get forced onto the front edge. The toe is not pointed so its not great for thin cracks or pockets.

Muira - semi flexible with pointy toes. Great for thin crack routes and steep pockets. Lots of power gets forced onto the front toe when edging. The sole is rigid enough to take some of the strain.

Katana - mixture of Muira and Mantra. A bit softer and pointer than the Muira. Velcra is great for boudlering!

Mantras - super specialized for extreme overhung pocketed sport routes. The shoe is very curved and with a super pointy toe. No rigid sole so your foot does all the work - which is good when you are trying to do funky moves with it!

3:47:55 PM
to answer your question better -

steep bouldering - go with velcro - pointy - and lightwieght shoes. Heel hooking rubber surface area is impotant

vertical bouldering - same as above but don't go as curved in the design.

trad - robust, strong and stiff. They need to fit comfortably as well as you wear them all day and might even walk in them!. If you are doing exterme trad (ie thin cracks) then pointy toes are important. Laces are good to keep your shoes on all day and don't get trashed in cracks like velcro does.

sport - more robust and comfortable versions of the steep bouldering shoe. a stiffer sole could be important. velco ok.
4:12:34 PM
This post reminds of the other thread about shoes for slabs. Do they work? Are they better than the old non-sticky EBs that people wore in the 70s? If sticky rubber does work, why haven't the old run-out slab routes been down graded?

4:15:46 PM
I want those nail boots on John Gills site. They would edge wickedly!

4:25:24 PM
thanks for that Neil.....very informative and concise. answered a couple of things I'd always wondered about.

4:26:15 PM
if you have a look in the granite guide (booroomba and crags around canberra) you will notice a few of the harder slabs have been down graded with the advent of sticky rubber, comments like used to be 24 in EBs. Though looking at the climbs you wouldnt get me leading them sticky rubber or not....those things are scary...


4:49:48 PM
how do you guys rate la spotiva rubber to stealth. i ask becos some of the sportiva shoes look really nice .eg venom but im a bit hooked on the stealth rubber.
5:13:15 PM
Horses for courses, I have done a few of the harder slabs at Booroomba and yet there are crack climbs that you could not pay me enough money to do.

On an interesting historical note, Peter c--ker one of the FA Team on Integral Crack repeated the climb last weekend. This is an amazing 35 years after Peter Aitchison and Peter c--ker climbed it in 1969. Peter led the climb in a single pitch cleanly. His comments were that is seemed a bit harder than when they did it. A flake had broken off raising the grade to 20 in the late 80's.

I hope I can still walk 35 years after my first climb...
6:19:58 PM
For best results I suggest a Galibier Contact for your right foot and and EB for your left foot.

7:21:05 PM
Has anyone got the new Scarpa ‘vision’s?
I rate them well for bouldering and relatively short trad (wouldn’t spend a day on the watchtower in them.)

9:33:48 PM
thanks neil,
I am on my second pair of shoes, sportiva miura, which now that they have broken in are really good. I had never thought about exactly where the power is transferred within the shoe. Now that I think about it though you are right, it feels really strong and solid in the toe. I like this apsect as I can feel confident with placing my weight on the toe even when bouldering on an incline I tend to push hard in with the toe, anyway I digress
I did try the velcro Katanas but the top of the heel where the loops are felt like it was cutting my achilles in half so I passed on them.
as my miuras are still relatively new I might hold out on getting a second pair for a while yet( tempting as it is) , as an incidental, I was told that it usually takes three pair of shoes before you end up getting it right.
cheers and thanks.
10:42:00 AM
Hi Frilly,

Sorry, haven't tried Katanas so can't comment there. Perhaps you could give us a bit of a "spec"... and we can then give you some ideas on shoes that would suit you. Tell us:

* What kind of climbing you do (is it always short sport routes... or long multipitch stuff demanding shoe comfort...)

* Do you frequent they climbing gyms? If so, do you stand around chit-chatting in between routes like I do... and thus require shoes that aren't so painful that you can't wear them for ages

* What style of climbing do you do... ie do you stick to facey stuff, or slabby stuff, or steep stuff? Is heelhooking something you do lots of?

* Do you have a particular preference as to whether your booties are laceups vs velcros vs slipons?


1:49:09 PM
the main things with shoes is that they fit your foot shape.... look at how your toes are shaped and look for a shoe with similar shaping.... ie if your second toe sticks out more than you big toe there will be some shoes shaped for that foot shape and those shoes designed for a longer big toe might not fit as well....

2:10:47 PM
Hi Frilly,

I'm hopeful that lots of people reply to you with opinions, because that way, you will essentially get reviews on a bunch of different shoes. I myself do lots of gym stuff, lots of steep stuff, and not much multipitch stuff. I did however dig out my trad rack over the weekend for my first trad effort in AGES. And I'm quite slow on the traddy stuff, so my shoes need to be comfy.

I don't do much crack climbing - mostly because I'm crap at it, but also partly because of a buggered ankle that is still in recovery mode. I'm a tad nervous about what would happen if I feel and my foot failed to free itself from the crack!

Anyway, in my lifetime, I've worn Boreals (little laceup beginner shoe... don't recall the specific model), Five-Ten Huecos, Scarpa Dominators, Triop Rap and also Triop Wings. My favourite shoes are currently my Triop Wings - for lots of reasons: they are really comfy shoes anyway - but also because they cause no unnecessary grief for my buggered ankle... they were comfy from day 1... they are slipon/velcros... so quick and easy to put on... they seem to perform well in all situations (with the exception of the rare occurrence where you find yourself trying to exit a roofy heelhook on full extension, which is a situation I don't believe you are likely to encounter) and they are a really cute red shoe. In other words, they should match your tartan stuff really well :-) If you like the Mythos then as far as I can tell, these would be the slipon/velcro equivalent of Mythos, but comfy from day 1 and a different colour. A much better allround shoe also. (Please note: these shoes are provided to me by my sponsor, though I don't talk anything up publicly unless it is worthy of being talked up. And I've never heard of anyone saying anything about the Triop Wings other than "I love these shoes"). For further info, please refer to:

Cheers matie - good luck.


3:43:18 PM
who cares as long as it helps your feet stay drier..

3:50:30 PM
It could be worse, they could be called "Whispers", "Libras" or "Fleurs"
4:17:19 PM
There was a Suzuki Katana - can't remember anyone running up even a low grade climb with one though. It's also a Japanese knife - useful, perhaps, when arguing that something isn't really a grade 31 after all ... I mean, he didn't climb it in the right style,
red socks with yellow shoes, that has to be a deduction of at least three grades!

7:34:40 PM
Going back to the subject of rubber a while ago, has there been much evolution of rubber/shoes over the last 5 or 6 years?

I've got an old pair of La Sportivas (I think they're called Cliffs or something) and the soles are looking pretty ratty. They've been sweet for cracks, edging and are comfortable enough, but I don't really feel comfortable smearing with them. I just wondering:

- if they're worth resoling
- has rubber become sticker since I got them (to deal with the whole smear problem)
- can you use one brand's rubber on another brand's shoe if there's a difference in performance
- or should I retire them and go for something different (are shoes that are good for smears generally bad for something like small edges?)

Any thoughts would be great
9:56:40 PM

can't answer all your questions because worn shoes are relitave, but I have resoled shoes with different rubber (5-10 on Mythos) with good results, & I find smearing shoes (which are softer ie more surface area to smear with) are not as good on micro edges (which are harder & stiffer, esp round the toes).

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There are 32 messages in this topic.


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