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You will undoubtedly earn extra gnar points by soloing the North Chimney while approaching the Diamond in your dad’s hand-me-down New Balances, but it would be a bit safer for you to trade in your raggedy old sneakers for a pair of legit approach shoes. Visit Backcountry.com for discounts on approach shoes.
As usual, we receive a portion of the sales—the listed items have not been tested by the editors.
La Sportiva TX2 Approach Shoe
$97.50 (25% off, was $130)
The TX line from Sportiva is home to some of the top approach shoes on the market. The TX2s are the lightest that Sportiva makes, weighing in at just 9.8oz per. The breathable and quick drying mesh upper makes them a sure choice for long approaches or trail runs on hot days, while the sticky rubber outsole offers supreme traction on any terrain.
La Sportiva TX Guide Approach Shoe
$119.25 (25% off, was $159)
The TX Guides are a bit burlier than the TX2s, meaning they’re slightly heavier, but still lightweight at 12.3oz. This weight gain however provides extra comfort and support. They feature an Ortholite Approach footbed and EVA midsole for stability, and the Impact Brake System alleviates wear and tear on your joints while trekking downhill.
Scarpa Crux Air Approach Shoe
$97.46 (25% off, was $129.95)
The Crux Air Approach Shoes are designed for arduous approaches under the summer sun. The synthetic knit upper is ultra-breathable, paired with a polyester lining to wick away moisture.The Vibram Megagrip outsole provides excellent grip on trail and rock alike, and the rubber toe rand adds durability and protection.
Scarpa Kalipe Approach Shoe
$111.71 (25% off, was $148.95)
Scarpa beckons you to “Brave scrambles and dicey approaches in the Kalipe Shoe.” The Vibram Exagon Grip and Megagrip rubber sticks to rock nearly as good as your climbing shoes, allowing you to move quickly and confidently in the mountains. The suede and mesh upper makes this a durable and breathable piece of footwear.
Asolo Magnum GV Shoe
$224.96 (25% off, was $299.95)
The Magnum GV is a workhorse designed to get you to those hard to reach places. It has a Gore-Tex membrane for waterproofing, a cushioned midsole for comfort, and above the ankle support. The Magnum GV also has an extended toe rand for extra protection, and a grippy outsole for maximum traction.
Butora Wing Approach Shoe
$96.75 (25% off, was $129)
The Wing is more akin to a climbing shoe than a street shoe. It features a flat surface under the toe for stepping on holds, a rubber rand that wraps all the way around, and a stiff sole for optimized stability while climbing. The Wing would be an excellent choice for long scrambles and technical trails.
Evolv Cruzer Psyche Approach Shoe
$59.21 (25% off, was $78.95)
The Cruzer Psyche is one of the most classic approach shoes on the market, and for good reason. It has a rugged rubber outsole for traction on the trail, while the canvas upper is stylish and casual enough to be worn around town without shouting: “Look at me! I climb!”
DAKINE Ho’okipa Flip Flop
$32 (20% off, was $39.99)
Ok, so it’s not an approach shoe. But it is extremely nice and convenient to have a lightweight pair of flip flops in your crag bag so you’re not having to re-lace your approach shoes in between each climb. Protect your feet from the jagged rocks and debris at the base of the cliff while still letting your dogs breathe.