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Michael's Passions

Sport Climbing

Michael's Bio

mike

mike wrote a review of on July 16, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: Runs small

So I've been wearing these exclusively for a few weeks to break them in over a wide variety of terrain - indoor, granite, polished limestone, and fresh limestone. They are now well-broken in and have been through enough different movement styles to give them a clear review.

I sized the same as my Shamans (which is the same as my street shoe), and the first two rounds I questioned whether they would fit - it is definitely a smaller volume shoe in all directions compared to the Shaman, and it was some effort to get them on. That said, after several hours climbing in them over several sessions, they have adapted well to my feet - easy to slide on, still a tight fit but comfortable enough to wear while working a route for over 30 minutes.

The pros - very precise toe, especially on steeper terrain. For problems and routes that require getting the toe in on a small hold and keeping it there, these work great. I was really impressed by how hard I could edge down on miniscule footholds on vertical climbing. Heel and toe-hooking are what you would expect - a moderately deep heel cup and the single strap keep the shoe on even when yarding hard on a heel, and the extended toe patch scums into the wall just fine.

Shoe gets a little warm for extended wear, but I think this is every shoe that has a large rubber toe patch for hooking - climbing rubber doesn't breathe. Rubber is a little thick to start, but to be fair, it does extend the life of the shoe significantly, and I rarely think the extra 1 mm of rubber is what is ever going to hold me back.

General Consensus - super precise shoe to point directly into holds and gain good purchase; high performance with a good level of comfort once broken in. Sized similar to Shamans, especially if these are being used as the SEND shoes, but might be worth it to go a 1/2 size up if it is used as a training pair.

(3)

 

mike

mike wrote a review of on March 5, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

Pretty psyched on these shoes; I am a fan of slippers in general, especially if they can hold a heel or toe hook decently well. I've been using these in the gym to set and forerun problems, and have taken them outside sport climbing and bouldering as well.

The material stretches well to accommodate different foot shapes, and it is sensitive enough to give a good sense of control on holds. Was happy to feel I could really press my weight into small holds and feel stable for a soft shoe. I'd suggest sizing down a full size from other Evolv shoes if you want these as a harder-route shoe.

The other plus is that they are very light and low-profile; makes it really easy to toss these into the pack for a day of climbing.

(1)

 

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mike

mike wrote a review of on August 26, 2012

5 5

The new Primes (SC and Lace up) have found their way into my regular rotation of climbing shoes, performing solidly on footwork intensive boulder problems, as well as long, technical face climbing.

Quick Background on reviewer - 10 years climbing experience, 6 years professional coaching experience. Climbing in the 5.13 range.

Shoe Pros -

- crazy amount of rubber coverage, it's almost like a lightweight rubber sock pointed forward. Any angle you can place your foot on the rock has the capability to stick well.
- semi-symmetrical last provides a good step of power across the first two toes. Edging and smearing are solid, and heel and toe hooking are baller.
- Nice construction; feels like it will last a lot of abuse.

Could be better -

- longer break in time than shoes with less rubber. First few sessions have these feeling tight and stiff. Break in to be comfortable and much softer, but the first few sessions are foot squeezy.

- Enough rubber coverage that it can make the foot sweat some on long routes.

(0)

 

mike

mike wrote a review of on April 26, 2012

5 5

Started using these about a month ago, and thus far they are holding up solidly. Much lighter than initially expected from an approach shoe, but solid construction and the materials are tough.

Nice level of stiffness in the front portion of the shoe an a low-profile toe that works well for jamming into cracks. On a trip to St. George a few weeks ago, I was able to warm up on mid 5.11 sport routes in these before putting on my climbing shoes.

(1)

 

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mike

mike wrote a review of on March 9, 2012

5 5

So I never climbed in the original Pontas, so I can't really make a comparison between these and the first version, but I have worn many, many different climbing shoes in 10+ years, and I've been quite a fan of these since I picked them up.

(For reference - I work as a routesetter and climbing coach, and have usually climbed in Anasazi Lace-ups for a stiffer technical shoe, testarossas for a steep sport shoe, and Speedsters (or the old school Mantra S, for those that remember it) as a gym shoe.)

The style of this shoe is flat and pointy, and it climbs very similar to other shoes in this category (think Anasazi lace-up). The three velcro straps work about as well as laces for tensioning the fit throughout the whole shoe, and the heel cup is decently deep and secure enough that my heel hasn't slipped out on strong heel hooks. Decent toe cap rubber over the rand for toe-hooking. If you have decent footwork and can place your toes well, I think this shoe will serve you pretty well on just about any terrain - while many new shoes are pushing the downturned toe as a necessity for hard climbing, these feel they will perform just as well on steep routes as on thin vertical routes.

(0)

 

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mike

mike wrote a review of on September 22, 2011

4 5

Really, really like these - right out of the box solid fit and feel great climbing indoors and on steeper routes. The heel and toe hooking are definitely the shine points - I can crank from pretty strenuous body positions and don't feel any slippage.

Haven't pulled them out for anything dead vertical, since I have stiffer shoes for that kind of climbing.

My one issue is with sizing, and I'm tempted to re-order and downsize. They were perfect out of the box, but are stretching a lil bit much. I know shoe sizing is kinda personal, but here are my stats -

Foot - Size 10.5 running shoe, wider, relatively flat feet with a minimal morton's toe.

Climbing Shoe size w/ Sportiva -
Size 41.5 Testarossas, perfect fit.
Size 41 Pythons - shoes are physically 2 cm LONGER than the testarossas.
Size 41 Vipers - very close in size to my pythons.

(1)

 

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mike

mike wrote a review of on June 9, 2009

5 5

Fun on all types of terrain, really sensitive sole that has enough flex to really dig in with your toes.

Similar to a lot of the other Mad Rock shoes, rubber strips over the toebox really do help with toe-hooking, especially on steeper terrain. The rubber on it is as sticky as any other shoe I've tried, and they are holding up well. Really good for training and working on footwork, as you have a very good feel of the holds underfoot.

Feels pretty good out of the box, but definitely stretches a little in size - hence my preference for the lace-up version that can be cinched down moreso as time goes on.

(1)

 

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mike

mike wrote a review of on June 9, 2009

5 5

Like the other reviews have said, these come a little stiff out of the box, but break-in very well.

I've usually liked softer-soled shoes, but the Mugen-tech's are on-point with being sensitive enough to feel out footholds and even smear, while being very supportive on edges and pockets. The rubber over the top of the forefoot has proved useful on toe-hooks, and the heel locks on solid.

(0)

 

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