We have reviewed multiple top brands and dozens of dozens of shoes to come up with the top climbing shoe for wide feet. Our winner, the Scarpa Boostic, stood head and shoulders above the competition, we’ll break down why below.
Everyone who has ever hit the climbing wall at their local gym knows exactly how much hand strength comes into play when scaling a wall. What those weekends warriors who are thinking about taking their climbing game to the next level don’t always realize though, is just how important your feet are in a challenging climb.
You might be able to scale a short simple wall or easy outdoor route with you upper body taking on the brunt of the work, but as climbs become longer and more challenging your feet play a critical role on your success. Without the right pair of shoes you are holding yourself back and taking what should be an exhilarating experience and turning it into a painful, potentially torturous event.
Unfortunately, finding the right climbing shoe can be a seriously involved task. You need to consider the style of climbing that you participate in most (bouldering, gym climbing, edging, face climbing…), the specific features of the shoe (the sole, the closure, the lining) and the fit. The wrong style of shoe can not only make you uncomfortable during a climb, it can hamper your performance or possible even increase your risk of injury.
When you’ve got wider than average feet, picking a shoe becomes an even greater challenge – especially if you are relatively new to the sport. It can be tough to judge how a shoe will feel while you are out on a climb if you only wear them for a few minutes in the store – will they stretch? Will they hold up to the use and abuse of regular climbing? Will they become increasingly uncomfortable as your climb goes on, limiting your time and performance?
That brings us to why we chose the Scarpa Boostic and it begins with:
The Scarpa Boostic was specifically designed to help you navigate the toughest, most aggressive climbs, and these efforts produced a resounding success. This climbing shoe features outstanding grip right out of the box, which makes it an ideal option for edge climbing and for climbing without the benefit of a useful or clearly defined foothold (smearing).
The Boostic also features a toe box that is asymmetrical – this doesn’t affect the fit at all, but helps tremendously when it comes to gaining a secure foothold in precarious places.
While choosing based on either performance or comfort is a common plight for most climbers – especially climbers with wider than average feet – the Boostic somehow manages to deliver above and beyond just about every other climbing shoe on both fronts.
The toe box, despite being designed for performance as mentioned above, has ample space for wide feet. And, adjustments made to the original design have addressed previous issues with the heel cup creating a more secure and comfortable fit. Once you’ve had a chance to break them in (which doesn’t take long), these will be among the most comfortable climbing that you’ll ever have the pleasure of wearing – without sacrificing performance in any way.
The Scarpa Boostic secure with Velcro straps, making them easy to get on and off and easy to adjust. You can create a super secure and comfortable fit in a matter of seconds without having to fight with laces.
The Scarpa Boostic are crafted from synthetic leather which makes them very durable, but also keeps them from stretching. You’ll most likely get the best fit by choosing the size of your standard shoe, possibly even a half size smaller. Don’t choose a pair that you’ve got to cram your feet into and expect them to expand like climbing shoes crafted from natural leather tend to do – you’ll only be setting yourself up for uncomfortable climb after uncomfortable climb waiting for something that won’t happen.
This is where the “best” products usually become a question mark for buyers who are on a budget, because more often than not, the statement “you get what you pay for” holds true. Somewhat surprisingly though, the Scarpa Boostic climbing shoes are very reasonably priced compared to other top climbing shoes.
Depending on where you are shopping, the prices for the Boostic can go as high as $150 a pair or more, but with a little shopping around you can find these top of the line climbing shoes for under $100 – which is an absolute steal for a climbing shoe of this caliber.
There really isn’t a whole lot to pick apart with the Scarpa Boostic climbing shoe – they are at the head of the class in overall performance and comfort and they are constructed of the highest quality materials and certainly built to last. The one potential knock is that they are not the best shoe on the market for crack climbing – if this is your primary discipline, you might have to look elsewhere for your dream shoe.
Sometimes the “overall best” shoe for any category doesn’t quite do it for you or fully meet your specific unique needs. For those of you that don’t love the fit, look or style of the Scarpa Boostic, here are some outstanding alternatives for climbers with wide feet:
Five Ten is well known among avid climbers for producing top quality shoes for just about every climbing discipline – so it is no surprise to see one of their designs on this list. And – of all the top brands out there, Five Ten is consistent for delivering shoes that work well for climbers with wider than average feet.
While our number one pick is among the most comfortable climbing shoes on the market – the Anasazi Moccasym is the most comfortable climbing shoe available. Unlike the Boostic, the Moccasym does stretch (quite a bit actually), so you need to go at least a half size below your street shoe size (maybe a full size) – and there is a decent break in period, but once you get them broken in, these shoes feel more like slippers than climbing boots.
The Moccasym is a slip on shoe so there is minimal time invested in getting ready to start your climb and it really excels when it comes to crack climbing – so if that is your favorite style of climb, you can easily insert these as your number one shoe. Price point toward the lower end, which makes the Moccasym a good choice for climbers on a budget.
The Shaman is a high performance shoe from Evolv – a company with an outstanding reputation for delivering quality products to aggressive climbers. Evolv has listened to criticism (the minimal critiques customers had on things like fit and comfort) and addressed them with the latest version of the Evolv Shaman to deliver a climbing shoe that is at or near the top of the pack in terms of performance and comfort.
The Shaman is the shoe favored by the 2015 US Sport Climbing Champion Kai Lightner, so you know it is more than capable of handling your most challenging climbs. The biggest potential downside of the Shaman lies in its price tag – it is the 2nd most expensive shoe on our list and might be a bit out of range for climbers who are on a budget.
La Sportiva TC Pro
The La Sportiva TC Pro landed Alpinists Mountain Standard Award and stands tall as one of the best designed shoes for crack and edge climbing. La Sportiva delivers great protection, outstanding comfort and construction that lends itself to scaling the most challenging walls.
The TC Pro is lace up, which helps the climber to create the most secure fit and feel for difficult climbs, but it also means a bit more time invested getting ready and post climb. This shoe performs as well as any on our list, but in this case, the performance comes with a higher price. The TC Pro carries the highest price of any climbing shoe on our list, so you’ll need to open your wallet a little bit wider if this top quality shoe from La Sportiva is on your wish list.
When taking all-around performance, comfort and price all into consideration, there is simply no better option out there than the Scarpa Boostic. The shoe is simply outstanding for new, intermediate and experienced climbers and can be found at a very reasonable price. If you want top performing climbing shoe that will fit well and remain comfortable on your wider than average feet, the Boostic is your shoe.
If you’ve got specific disciplines that you favor, like crack climbing, or are in the market for a shoe that will stretch upon break in and conform to your foot you can’t go wrong with any of the climbing shoes in our honorable mentions.