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Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Expert Reviews & Buying Guide

quadcopter reviewsBest Rock Climbing Shoes

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How to Choose the Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Rock climbing is a sport that requires several pieces of gear, but rock climbing shoes are your top priority before you start climbing. Picking out your rock climbing shoes takes a little more research than your average shoe, so we decided to write a buying guide to save you the trouble. If you’re ready to get climbing, you’ve come to the right place. When it comes to choosing the best rock climbing shoes, you have to understand how the sizing works, as well as other features that these shoes have that your everyday shoes don’t. Here are a handful of things to consider before buying your first pair of climbing shoes.

Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Material: Climbing shoes are made out of different materials for durability, strength, and ease of cleaning. The most common materials are synthetic or suede, but you can also find shoes made of leather if you’re looking to really invest in the sport.

Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Gender: The shoe’s gender will help determine what shoe fits you best. Some rock climbing shoes come in unisex sizes, but those that solely for males or females may have a difference in the width and length of the shoe.

How to Choose the Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Color: Color can be very important to climbers, especially if you climb with a team. You can find almost every color you can dream of in a pair of climbing shoes if you search long enough. If color is important to you take a look at the color options before purchasing.

Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Sole Material: The sole material of your rock climbing shoes is very important if you ever decide to climb outside. Most soles are made out of rubber to prevent you from slipping and falling, but there are other synthetic materials out there, too.

Best Rock Climbing Shoes

Sizing: There are two types of sizing for rock climbing shoes: European and US. European shoes are measured in centimeters while US shoes are measured in inches. Be sure to double check the sizing before you buy to avoid having to return your shoes!

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Closure: Just like all athletic and sporting shoes, rock climbing shoes have to be closed in some way. The two most common ways to close your shoes are laces and straps. Laces are tied up, while straps are usually closed with velcro.

Top 10 Products

Now that you’re prepared to buy your rock climbing shoes, it’s time to find the best pair for you. We’ve hand selected the top 10 best rock climbing shoes to bring you the best options to choose from. Our top pick and budget pick are the top two picks, but we have an additional 8 pairs of rock climbing shoes to give you a little bit of variety in sizes, closures, and shoe material. Without further ado, here are the best rock climbing shoes for you!

La Sportiva TarantuLace Climbing Shoe

La Sportiva TarantuLace Climbing Shoe
La Sportiva’s TarantuLace Climbing Shoe is named after tarantulas for good reason. These synthetic and rubber climbing shoes are designed with grip in mind to ensure you stay climbing up and not falling down. The quick-pull lacing system allows for easy and precise regulation of how tight your shoes are. This allows you to make sure your shoes are on snugly enough to stay on, but not so uncomfortable you can’t move your feet. These shoes were created with intermediate climbers in mind to allow them to smear, hook, and edge like the pros. The soles allow you to find purchase on almost any ledge or crook for better balance and stability. Whether you wear these outdoors or in the gym, you can expect the moisture control and breathability no matter how hard you go. La Sportiva is considered to have several of the top rock climbing shoes and the TarantuLaces are no different.
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Mad Rock Nomad Climbing Shoe

Mad Rock Nomad Climbing Shoe
For those just starting out in the climbing world, the Mad Rock Nomad Climbing Shoe isn’t a huge investment and fits just like a normal shoe. Unlike most climbing shoes where you have to size down a few sizes, you can easily order your normal shoe size and receive a pair of climbing shoes you can start with right away. Most people love these shoes for indoor climbing, so if you’re interested in finding a climbing gym these shoes are perfect. The upper part of the shoe is made out of synthetic suede, while the soles are made of rubber for good traction. The shoes themselves were designed for multi-pitching or climbing trad routes, so you can also climb with these outdoors once you get enough experience. We consider these shoes to the best climbing shoes for bouldering because they are a small investment to getting started in this rather expensive sport. For comfort while you climb, grab a pair of Mad Rock Nomad Climbing Shoes.
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SCARPA Origin Climbing Shoe

SCARPA Origin Climbing Shoe
The SCARPA Origin Climbing Shoe is made with 100% suede and comes in European and US sizes. The soles are rubber and perfect for gaining traction as your climb up and down rocks at the gym or outdoors. SCARPA prides itself on delivering a beginner climbing shoe with comfort to encourage new climbers to continue coming back to the sport. The strap allows for the ultimate security and snugness so new climbers won’t have to deal with slipping in and out of their shoes as they climb upwards. With a resilient and sticky rubber sole, you’ll be able to climb in several different conditions without worrying about slipping or falling. SCARPA has constructed shoes for hiking, climbing, skiing, mountaineering, and other outdoor pursuits since 1938. They’ve been a brand you can trust in the outdoor sporting arena for a long time and their customers will tell you no different. We choose SCARPA’s Origin Climbing Shoe as the best climbing shoes for beginners!
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Evolv Elektra Climbing Shoe

Evolv Elektra Climbing Shoe
Evolv’s Elektra Climbing Shoe is the first women’s specific shoe on our list. When you buy these shoes, you have two colors to choose from: teal and purple. Both are made of synthetic materials to deliver on durable and comfortable shoes for beginner climbers. The Elektra shoe has been one of the top selling women’s shoe since 2014 because it offers the trifecta of comfort, performance, and value. This shoe was designed for beginning to advanced climbing shoes who climb both in the gym and outdoors. Evolv and TRAX Rubber have worked together on this shoe to deliver a more environmentally-friendly manufacturing process when it comes to developing the rubber sole. They came up with eco-TRAX is now considered one of the top eco-friendly recycled rubber soles on climbing shoes. Evolv’s Elektra Climbing Shoe is truly the best women’s rock climbing shoes and their awards prove it!
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Black Diamond Momentum Shoe

Black Diamond Momentum Shoe
Black Diamond is one of the most trusted outdoor brands on the market and they’re no different when you are looking for climbing shoes. Black Diamond designed these shoe to be flat and neutral for the best performance when climbing upwards. Their engineered Knit Technology gives the upper part of the Momentum Shoe better breathability and comfort, too. The liner at the front edge of the shoe gives stretch to where you need it as you move from boulder to boulder. The 4.3mm rubber soles are made to last and mold for consistency and performance when you’re on the wall. This shoe also has two velcro straps, allowing you to adjust the shoe snugly to your foot without worry of it falling or slipping off. These shoes were meant for moderate routes, or boulders and gym sessions, not outdoor climbing. For a sensitive and form-fitting shoe for beginners, look no further than the Black Diamond Momentum Shoe.
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Five Ten Rogue VCS Shoe

Five Ten Rogue VCS Shoe
The Five Ten Rogue VCS Shoe is another women’s climbing shoe that offers a lot of variety. You have three color choices including purple, purple & charcoal, and neon blue & charcoal. The upper part of the shoe is made from split grain leather to give you comfort and breathability as you climb. You can easily adjust the fit of your shoe by closing the velcro straps. The rubber sole gives you plenty of grip and purchase on ledges and crooks. The shoes are made with stealth rubber to ensure you get enough friction, catch, and strength. Every shoe is made in the USA, too. Five Ten is a brand that extreme sports athletes know and trust as they’ve been making shoes for the most dangerous sports for almost 30 years. If you want a brand you can trust to give you the safest climbing shoes, Five Ten’s Rogue VCS Shoe definitely takes the cake.
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Mad Rock Drifter Climbing Shoe

Mad Rock Drifter Climbing Shoe
The Mad Rock Drifter Climbing Shoe may look like a beginner’s shoe, but it’s climbed more than just the easy routes. Mad Rock suggests this shoe for routes and climbers who are level V15 or easier. The upper material is made of leather, while the soles are made of 3.8mm rubber. Whether you’re a guy climbing in the gym or along the side of a mountain, you can trust these shoes to mold and perform when you need it. Mad Rock began as a climber-owned company to make highly innovative and affordable rock climbing shoes. Today, they still follow their first motto of innovating and creating the best shoes for climbers that they can afford. The manufacturer suggests sizing 1.5 sizes up to ensure you get the perfect fit. Be sure to check the sizing guide to help you make the best purchase. If you’re a man ready to tackle the rocks, try the Mad Rock Drifter Climbing Shoes to overcome any challenge.
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Climb X Rave Climbing Shoe

Climb X Rave Climbing Shoe
For the perfect gym climbing shoe, check out the Climb X Rave. This shoe is created with a double stitch construction to ensure durability and longevity. The padded collar and heel give you comfort where you need it most as you tackle your next climb. The antimicrobial foot pad keeps foul smells away after long hours in the gym. When choosing your size, size one size up for a comfortable fit or one size down if you are looking for a more aggressive competition style fit. Your toes should be touching the end of your shoe at the very least either way. The shoes themselves come pre-downsized, so as a new climber you should size up until you feel comfortable with a tighter fit. You’ll have four colors to choose from at checkout: red, yellow, blue, and gray. The Climb X Rave Climbing shoe is truly a great pair of shoes to start your climbing career in.
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Evolv Spark Climbing Shoe

Evolv’s Spark Climbing Shoe is built to last with high-quality leather and 3D Air Mesh to give your feet room to breathe. With Enhanced Arch Support, you’ll feel comfort in the middle of your foot as you climb. With a semi-symmetrical profile, you’ll be able to enjoy the benefits of a near neutral shoe that gives in all the right places. Like other Evolv climbing shoes, you’ll find 4.2mm TRAX rubber in the soles that allow you to stay upright and on the wall without fear of slipping or falling. The rand is made of VTR Rand which gives you extra thickness in the toe, too. This shoe is available in sizes 5 to 13 in Men’s US sizes, so be sure to check the sizing chart before you purchase a pair. For men who sweat in the climbing gym, the Evolv Spark Climbing Shoe will ignite your motivation while keeping your sweat at bay.
Evolv’s Spark Climbing Shoe is built to last with high-quality leather and 3D Air Mesh to give your feet room to breathe. With Enhanced Arch Support, you’ll feel comfort in the middle of your foot as you climb. With a semi-symmetrical profile, you’ll be able to enjoy the benefits of a near neutral shoe that gives in all the right places. Like other Evolv climbing shoes, you’ll find 4.2mm TRAX rubber in the soles that allow you to stay upright and on the wall without fear of slipping or falling. The rand is made of VTR Rand which gives you extra thickness in the toe, too. This shoe is available in sizes 5 to 13 in Men’s US sizes, so be sure to check the sizing chart before you purchase a pair. For men who sweat in the climbing gym, the Evolv Spark Climbing Shoe will ignite your motivation while keeping your sweat at bay.
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Butora Endeavor Climbing Shoe

The Butora Endeavor Climbing Shoe is the only wide foot specific climbing shoe on our list. Made with moisture-wicking split leather material, you’ll be able to climb for hours on end without drowning in sweat. The full-length polyurethane midsole is best for torsion rigidity and precision edging, making this shoe great for intermediate to advanced climbers. With an asymmetrical toe shape, the entire shoe length follows the natural flow of your foot. The soles of these shoes are made of 100% butyl Butora F5 rubber, giving you a super sticky sole for easy climbing. Many climbers prefer these shoes for slab or vertical climbs as the sole shape is perfect for climbing with mostly with power from your top half. Others suggest sizing half a size up to find your perfect fit but check the sizing chart before you buy. With all the power and precision you want, the Butora Endeavor Climbing Shoes are truly the best rock climbing shoes for wide feet. Never look for another wide fitting climbing shoe again!
The Butora Endeavor Climbing Shoe is the only wide foot specific climbing shoe on our list. Made with moisture-wicking split leather material, you’ll be able to climb for hours on end without drowning in sweat. The full-length polyurethane midsole is best for torsion rigidity and precision edging, making this shoe great for intermediate to advanced climbers. With an asymmetrical toe shape, the entire shoe length follows the natural flow of your foot. The soles of these shoes are made of 100% butyl Butora F5 rubber, giving you a super sticky sole for easy climbing. Many climbers prefer these shoes for slab or vertical climbs as the sole shape is perfect for climbing with mostly with power from your top half. Others suggest sizing half a size up to find your perfect fit but check the sizing chart before you buy. With all the power and precision you want, the Butora Endeavor Climbing Shoes are truly the best rock climbing shoes for wide feet. Never look for another wide fitting climbing shoe again!
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