There haven’t been a lot of options for a ‘canyoneering’ shoe. We’ve probably all tried the original 5.10 Canyoneer and had problems with the sole coming off. I was excited to see another player throwing their hat in the ring for a canyoneering shoe. I’m picky with what I put on my feet. Canyoning requires a lot out of a shoe from comfort hiking to traction on the rock. Most of my canyoneering is in sandstone canyons in Southern Utah. But I thought I’d put it to the test on a local waterfall in Utah County. For my review I jotted down a few of the considerations I have when looking for a shoe, with a rating 1-5.
I wear a US 9.5 street shoe, sometimes a size 10 if I want some additional space. I tried a size 10 for this shoe, to make room for neoprene socks. I guess Adidas had the same thought, as these were too big for me. I’d say it runs about half a size big, even with a neo sock.
Of course I’d be able to tell better how the comfort of the shoe is, if it fit. But one thing I noticed was the high backing on the shoe was quickly beginning to irritate my Achilles, even after a short hike (less than a mile). This is a personal thing, but I wouldn’t want to hike a long ways in these.
This is one of my top requirements for a canyoneering shoe. It’s what I like best about 5.10’s shoe. The Hydro Pro uses stealth rubber, so they have the right idea. It worked as good or better on the slippery rocks and moss as a normal shoe. I’d like to try it on some sandstone, but I think it’d be good enough, but not quite as sticky as 5.10.
There are a few features I care about in my shoe. I was wishing this had some kind of a way for the water to escape once it was in my shoe. But it’s not a deal breaker. The laces seem strong enough, and has a Velcro cuff around the ankle for more stability. I had to retighten this a few times as it got loosened up from being wet.
I don’t really know how well it will hold up. It’s bound to be better than the original canyoneer, with its sole issues. I would like it better if it had stronger material on the toe and the sides of the shoe. Long sections of Mae West sandstone will probably wear holes in the side. Probably was designed with wet canyons in mind, more than the US South West. We’ll see how it goes after some multiple trips.
My overall rating is 3 ½ stars, mainly because of the pain in my heel from hiking. If it were more comfortable I’d recommend it more. That being said, if it’s comfortable for you to hike it it’s a good alternative to the options that are out there.