/ Whats the best approach shoe?

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mew71 on 08 Aug 2012
I'm looking for a new pair of shoes for the crag, I want to be able to scramble and climb low level grade in them AND have the grip on the bottom not to slip on grass coming off the crag.
Any help gratefully received.
simonclimbs - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: I've got La Sportiva Boulder X and I love them. They have a good climbing zone around the toe and the lacing is very adjustable like a climbing shoe for great fit.

Also got a pair of La Sportiva Ganda Guides (yes I like La Sportiva) which are quite a bit more expensive but fantastic (if they fit, quite narrow). They also have the climbing zone toe and a slightly stiffer sole for better climbing performance. I used them for the cuillin ridge, amongst other things and were brilliant for walking and climbing.
xplorer on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

La sportiva xplorer's

Can't beat the buggers
HappyTrundler - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

Wellington Boots are very underrated as a pure plod in item...cheap, keep your feet dry, good grip...not Cuillin Ridge material though...
AdCo82 on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: the one's that fit and feel comfortable!
climb the peak - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: merrell trail glove are brilliant. I could probably climb up to vs in them, this has not yet been tested though. There super light, very durable and can easily be clipped to the back of your harness when multipiching
Lord_ash2000 - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: I've got the boulder X's and they are alright but build quality is unreliable. I know a few people who also have them and some have started falling to bits after not a lot of use.
Personally with mine, they have lasted well, although the laces did snap on me (both of them) and the loops on the back have ripped out. But that said, the show bit works well. I've managed to top rope English 6b routes in them so they do the job on rock and I've also done pretty long walks, 20 miles plus on paths and rocks and I've never had a blister from them.
I suppose it just depends if you get a well made pair or not.
In reply to mew71: I am very happy with my 5:10 Camp Fours, done plenty of easy multi pitch in them.
Rog Wilko on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to freemanTom (Guildford MC): Agree, Camp 4s are the business. I was quite taken with Guide Tennies till I tried them on a wet grassy hillside. Shame Camp 4s are so costly, but worth it in my view.
Al Randall on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to Rog Wilko: I like the Camp4's. Not sure about the grass but they seem to retain their friction on wet rock and I've climbed VS in them.

Al
Duncan Bourne - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:
I climbed Tower Ridge in a pair of 5.10 Camp fours. Found them comfortable and very grippy on the rock. Also for the descent and bog hopping back to the car. They were actually my wife's which I wore as my (very) old 5.10s fell apart at the start of the route.
Coel Hellier - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to Duncan Bourne:

So you made Michele do it bare-foot???
andyd1970 - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: I have the La Sportiva Boulder X too. Climbing wise they are great but I don't rate the sole as I have slipped lots of times in them just walking my dog. They also take ages to dry and really hot in summer but as yet mine aren't failing apart like other UKC's have said. It's a Pitty I slip a lot in them, as they are so comfy. If I got some new Approach shoes it wouldn't be the Boulder X's.
a lakeland climber on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

A pair of Walshes (fell running shoes) though you need to wear the studs down a bit before they are really good.

ALC
alasdair19 on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: scarpa Zen for me. Heavy but climb vs. Last a long time. Outside stopped stocking cause expensive cheaper than sportiva gandas though.

Garmont have made great shoes, tricky to find. El cap and skye ridge in same pair!
alooker - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: really like my scarpa crux shoes, tried the five tens too but they didn't fit me as well
Duncan Bourne - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to Coel Hellier:
nar she had her climbing shoes. I was surprised that her Camp 4s fitted me though
mew71 on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

Wow loads of useful stuff in the responses. I'm off to check out which brands actually fit as I have broad feet and have to use wide fit in most shoes. Thanks to all.
Styx - on 08 Aug 2012
There's a lot of very different types out there designed for different environments, the first thing you should do is stop and ask yourself:

- Where are you going to use these shoes?

- How much hiking and how much climbing are you realistically going to do in them?

Some shoes have more padding than others making them better for hiking distances in, but the more padding they have the worse they'll be for climbing in, don't underestimate this.

Pay close attention to the tread on many approach shoes, the majority of them aren't really ideal for UK conditions (i.e. wet grass and mud!), the ones with a purely dotted sole will have better grip on rock but they are an absolute horror on grass.

The Camp 4 is in my opinion the best all round approach shoe for use in most places in the UK, it climbs reasonably well, it's durable, comfortable to hike in and the tread is lugged deeply enough to provide stability on loose ground.

There's a pretty good round up with some pros/cons of the major players on the US site outdoorgearlab.com here:

http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Approach-Shoe-Reviews/ratings
Styx - on 08 Aug 2012
ads.ukclimbing.com
Jonny Tee 69 - on 08 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

Scarpa Manta.
alpinist63 - on 09 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:
used to have a pair of garmont shoes, excellent value, good for the approach, even on wet / muddy slopes, and good for climbing. But I couldn't find these shoes anymore, the new Garmont ( red...) isn't as good in my opinion.
bought a pair of Kayland Vertigo k approach , same kind of shoe as the sportiva Gandalf but a bit wider for the toes, so more comfortable for walking , very good for climbing ( the best I have had so far)and cheaper than the Gandalf too. the sole of the shoe however is the same as 5.10 guide, gandalf.... so not very good for muddy terrain.
jdawg_85 - on 09 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: I've got the camp 4's. There pretty damn sticky, and really comfortable for the walk in. I don't really climb in them though so I couldn’t comment on that, the most I've done is a couple of difs in them.
Tallie - on 09 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71:

My wife's Garmont shoes (think we got them in the Dolomites?) have been very good.

I always watch these "which approach shoes" posts with interest in the hope that someone will have discovered the ideal combination of performance on rock and wet grass.

It appears that very like waterproof vs breathable for shells, performance on both rock and wet grass / mud are mutually exclusive characteristics.

I think I'll stay with my guide's - they're great on rock with added bonus of providing amusement for my partners when I fall on my arse on the walk out.
fil-p - on 09 Aug 2012
In reply to mew71: La Sportiva ganda's. Super comfy to walk in and wear all day but climb fantastically, the rubber is super sticky both on wet and dry rock but lasts too. Yeah they're a bit more expensive but definately worth it.
In reply to Tallie:

> I always watch these "which approach shoes" posts with interest in the hope that someone will have discovered the ideal combination of performance on rock and wet grass.

I'm reviewing these http://www.evolvsports.com/shop/approach-shoes/capitan/ for UKC currently. Thought they looked like light hikers really when I got them, i.e. not really a scrambling shoe but a deep tread for grip on mud/wet grass etc. But first time at the crag in them and I was really impressed how grippy the soles were on clean rock.
mikekeswick - on 11 Aug 2012
In reply to TobyA: I've had 5.10 camp 4's and just didn't get on with them. I thought they were too soft soled to be any good for climbing harder than v.diff/sev (but do you want to??). I've got some 5.10 guide tennies now and think they are much better for actual climbing in. Re. wet grass/mud - I normally climb in the dry (!) so am not bothered about grip on wet grass or mud.
I used to have some Montrail approach shoes ,which I can't remember the name of, and they were awesome. I don't think they make them anymore but if they did i'd buy a few pairs!

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