Best Overall Women's Climbing Approach Shoes
Five Ten Guide Tennie - Women's
The excellent edging and superior overall climbing ability of the Five Ten Guide Tennie - Women's
is what sealed the deal for us when deciding which shoe deserved the Editors' Choice Award. At OutdoorGearLab, the prestigious Editors' Choice Award for each gear category goes to the product that performs well in all categories when compared to the rest of the gear tested. The Five Ten Guide Tennie excels at the crucial elements tested (climbing ability) while also performing well in all other categories. While it is not as supportive of a hiker as some of the other shoes in this review, this shoe still performs that task adequately. In addition, its ratings for weight and durability ranked these shoes close to the majority of the other shoes, which makes it what we consider the best all-around, do-anything-and-everything rock climbing approach shoe.
Best Bang for the Buck
La Sportiva Boulder X - Women's
The Best Buy recipient needs to have good overall performance while at the same time be more accessible to people on a tight budget. The La Sportiva Boulder X - Women's
is one of the least expensive options of the group we tested, and it also came in at the top for most of our rating criteria. Where the Boulder X really shines is in its hiking ability. It provides great support for your feet regardless of the length of your slog or amount of weight you carry. The unique lacing system helps to tailor the fit of the shoe to each individual foot and task. It has high performance sticky rubber that provides great traction. This means that not only is this the most supportive shoe for long hikes, it also climbs well enough to trust them on slabby approaches or moderate climbing routes.
Top Pick for Light Weight
Evolv Cruzer - Women's
The Evolv Cruzer - Women's
stood out as unique within the group of shoes that we tested. While it lacks the support and protection needed for long approaches or approaches where you need to carry heavy loads, it was designed with a different purpose in mind. It is ultra lightweight, and compact while not compromising its climbing ability. The tread design and its low-volume fit means that it can smear and climb cracks remarkably well. The midsole is extremely flexible, and the uppers are made of a rugged duck canvas material. This means that you probably wouldn't even notice it hanging on your harness. Additionally, it has an added bonus that the heel is designed to fold down so it can double as your comfy belay shoe or your slippers back at camp.