With the Canadian summer rock season just starting up, many of us are looking at our faithful old approach shoes and admitting that the soles are worn thin and the holes we wore in the uppers with pride last season no longer seem so cool. It’s time for a new pair of approach shoes.
There’s quite a range of possibilities, with shoes that climb almost as well as some beginner rock shoes, but aren’t as comfortable for hiking, and shoes that are almost as light and cushioned as trail runners. The Scarpa GTX Rapid hits a median point between these two extremes that will appeal to many climbers.
At just 640 grams/pair in size 42.5, the Scarpa Rapid GTX feel light as a running shoe, an especially nice feature both when wearing them on a long approach and packing them for the descent. That being said, our reviewers found them reassuringly solid while edging and scrambling over large scree, thanks to the Dynamic Protection System insert in the forefoot and the TPU arch insert.
The high-friction, low-profile forefoot of the Vibram Megagrip soles stick to slabs. The waterproof breathable Gore-Tex lined upper is protected by bands of polyurethane, but don’t expect it to put up with an unlimited amount of foot jamming abrasion.
The Rapid GTX hits a sweet spot for many climbers between a runner and an approach shoe. If you’re looking for a light, solid shoe for both approaches and hiking, try it out.