/ Best footwear for the Cuillin ridge
Just wondering what people would recommend as best for 1 or 2 day attempt on the Cuillin ridge, I have a pair of Sportiva Trango's that are great for scrambling but still quite heavy and clunky, I see approach shoes are a popular choice but that would mean me buying a pair, would it be worth it?
Any time in the Cuillin I have always been glad for the ankle support from my big leather boots. Once winter is over my leather boots feel like slippers anyway haha.
I had the opposite experience: did it in big boots and regretted not doing it in fell running shoes. Approach shoes hadn't been invented at the time (early 80s). These days I always use approach shoes for similar alpine stuff (Grade II-III alpine ridge scrambles) and would only ever consider big boots if I were expecting snow.
I certainly think I would feel more comfortable doing the VDiff climbing in approach shoes but I have yet to test this theory.
A pair of Walsh PBs with slightly worn down studs. (Well they'll be worn down anyway after a day on the ridge!)
I did it in two days in big boots.
If I did it again I would take fell running shoes and a pair of climbing slippers.
You can get by with just a few slings for runners, but it was really windy when I did it, and the combination of just a few runners, high winds and big boots felt quite exciting on Naismith's Route for an E1 leader.
I did it in approach shoes (Sportiva Boulder X) with the inners removed - worked out great.
Not sure I'd want to do the TD Gap in my Inov-8s so I wouldn't recommend fell shoes for it, but obviously some people get on just fine like that.
If dry then climbing/approach shoes are both light and capable. i've done it in 5.10 tennies and they performed well but they are a bit 'flat footed' and i had the soles of my feet aching on the walk out. Perhaps some of the newer offerings from scarpa/Sportiva etc would be even better as they look to have a more built up heel
Guess its personal preference, but myself and a good friend did it in a day last summer in what can only be described as pretty much ideal conditions (95% dry throughout) I wore very light Zamberlain leather walking boots with a vibram sole and Dave wore trail shoes. At the end of a long day we had this discussion and he said he could have done with a bit more ankle support especially on the scree decents. I led TD gap (dry) in my boots and found it ok. Having something with a firm edge to it was definately useful but I was glad not to be wearing my B3 boots that have zero flex!
In the dry I like 5.10 Camp Fours. Good cushioning, and very sticky.
First time I did it was in tennis trainers. Second time I used approach shoes. Carried rock slippers for confidence on decent into gap and naismith's both times.
I think if I could affor a pair of scarpa cruxes I'd use them alone.
Csn't comment on a two day attempt, but when I did it in June, I had a pair of 5:10 Insights (cheap off a well known auction site!) and found them to be superb, not only for the technical pitches but also for descending on steeping rock.
My partner however was in pretty big walking boots and didn't have too much trouble, but couldn't say how he felt of the technical stuff.
I would say though that a pair of approach shoes are a very good investment either way!
Best of luck.... just take plenty of water!
> In the dry I like 5.10 Camp Fours. Good cushioning, and very sticky.
Yep. Or Insights.
Tried on a pair of tennies and camp fours today, like the feel of the tennies better but might not feel that after a long day. Both felt big in the toe box tho, have quite narrow feet, any alternatives worth trying for a narrow fit.
I did it in trainers with a pair of old rock shoes in the sack just in case. It was wet on the way up (and quite a bit of the ridge) so I took some dry socks as well and changed into them once I got on to the ridge and past all the bogs. Don't think I would have been as comfortable in big boots.
Camp 4s are amazing at smearing and jamming. Tennies are a better all round shoe, you can edge a bit with them, but I prefer the 4s.
> Tried on a pair of tennies and camp fours today, like the feel of the tennies better but might not feel that after a long day. Both felt big in the toe box tho, have quite narrow feet, any alternatives worth trying for a narrow fit.
Try the womens version of the camp fours for a narrow fit.
Not an option, I have huge narrow feet, size 45.
> Not an option, I have huge narrow feet, size 45.
I found the Camp Fours quite a sloppy fit for my feet, and a bit clompy. The Sportiva Boulder X are a much more precise fit for narrow feet. They were great for scrambling in Skye.
I did it last year in one day in scarpa approach shoes sized to be comfy - they were great. My friend opted for very snug fitting tennies and was in agony by the end. Your feet will swell over 15 hours!
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