Editors' Choice 2019: Tenaya Ra Woman Review
Our top climbing gear picks of 2019
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Fact: I have fat big toes. Pointy, downturned rock shoes aren’t my friends. But I wear them because of their promise of precision and power. After two months in the Women’s Ra—adapted (slimmed down) specifically for the female foot—I’m convinced they’re an all-around performance shoe that doesn’t sacrifice comfort. The buttery, Stretchtex microfiber upper and pillowy tongue canceled out pinch pain, while a rubber strip over the toes protected my piggies in hooks and jams. I drove the asymmetrical toes into the smallest of pockets and steadied my foot on the micro-est of chips thanks to the double midsole (this is one of Tenaya’s stiffer offerings), which, when paired with the 3.5mm XS Grip outsole, provided high-test precision and sensitivity. (The only ding would be that, given how rigid the shoes are, I sometimes slipped off smears, especially during break-in.) Two thick Velcro straps and dual heel tabs make them easy to pull on when you’re eager—or late—to start crushing your projects.
See more of our top climbing gear picks in the Gear Guide 2019: Editors’ Choice Awards, and listen to our latest podcast for an interview with Black Diamond’s climbing category director Kolin Powick.