Scarpa Vision climbing shoes
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I’m a fan of Scarpa’s Vision climbing shoes, because they are the only shoes I need to pack whether I’m heading for sport, trad, boulders, or gym—or don’t know what I’ll be in the mood for when I get there. I get the sense they are not designed for specialists in any particular style, but seem like all the footing I’d need for fun, recreational climbing at almost any level. (Of course, I’m not planning on redpointing any 5.13d’s anytime soon.)
Scarpa Vision climbing shoesScarpa Vision climbing shoes
The weekend weather’s been sour lately, so I’ve been putting a new pair through all sorts of abuse for the past two weeks at the Santa Fe Climbing Gym.
As far as construction goes, the toe is aggressive, and the instep is moderately arched for sporty moves at the gym or on boulders, but it’s still comfortable enough to handle longer climbs, or keep on while belaying. And the sole has a midrange hardness, but still smears well.
I particularly like the soft leather tongue, which lends the shoe the cool, snug feel of a driving glove-tight all around, but no hot spots.
The only drawback to a good all-around shoe like this is that it might not satisfy niche climbers. For example, you can pull off a heel hook to some degree, but it’s not what you’ll get with a high-performance sporting shoe. The rubber on the Vision’s heel is pretty slim, so you put up with a bit of heel slip. That said, Scarpa’s produced an excellent all-around shoe for a fair price. If you’re looking for one pair to go with you wherever you climb, the Visions are all the shoe you’ll need. Scarpa Vision, $139.95; www.scarpa.net