La Sportiva Nago
I had a bad climbing experience with my shoes in the summer heat of Smith Rock. I was climbing a technical route and not getting anywhere because my feet were in such pain. I had never experienced pain from climbing shoes bad enough to make me fall off the route I was trying to send. I think the heat of the rock caused my foot to swell making the shoes even tighter than normal. A little foot discomfort is pretty common when it comes to good fitting climbing shoes. In fact most climbers cram their feet into super tight shoes to increase their performance. After my experience I decided I needed more comfortable shoes where I wouldn’t have to worry about my feet on the next hard climb. I tried on many pairs of shoes and did some edging in the store to reproduce some discomfort. In the end I decided the Womens La Sportiva Nago’s would give me what I wanted.
When deciding on this pair of shoes I looked for comfort, performance, and durability.
I decided on this pair of shoes over the men’s nago and even the La Sportiva Mythos because the toe box is larger. The source of my discomfort with the Moccasym was my toes so I wanted something that would accommodate some swelling. I used them every day in Thailand in 90 degree heat and never had a problem with shoe tightness. In fact as my feet swelled it filled out the shoe and gave me a nice snug fit. They are pretty narrow around the arch of the foot since they are designed for narrow feet but the laces provided the adjustability to make them comfortable for my slightly wider feet.
I typically don’t climb super hard routes but for the grades I have climbed (up to 6c/5.11c) I have not had any issues with my feet. I’ve had just as much ease smearing and edging with these shoes as I did with the moccasyms. They have been great for single and multi-pitch routes alike.
This is the one area where I have been disappointed. Within about 30 uses the sole started to peel away from the rand. For beginners this is common since as one struggles to get up the wall it’s easy to drag your feet up to the next hold. I know better than to do this when I’m climbing now and it appears that my big feet stretch the shoe and pull the rubber rand away from the sole. I have another male friend who uses the same pair of shoes and the exact thing happened with his shoes as well.
Overall they fit and perform how I wanted, but I think they could be a little more resilient when it comes to durability. Overall I would give them a 7 out of 10. When I need to purchase another pair of shoes I will likely look for something different and hopefully find a shoe that will stand up to a little more abuse.
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