AKU Croda

These climbing boots are precisely directed towards via ferrata route or scrambles over clean rock, rather than bigger mountain routes that often require scree descents and crossings of snow in the Alps or bogs in the Highlands. So you get a suede upper with lacing that extends to the toe for a precise fit. The toe profile is also ideal for climbing as it allows very precise toe placement. You get a rubber rand around the toe and heel for durability and a fairly clutter-free upper. The low ankle cuff is ideal for allowing freedom of movement and when climbing in these on good rock you really feel unhindered by their weight of just 1392g (pair, size 11). A Gore-Tex waterproof lining ensures dry feet too. The slightly softer flex means the walk-in to the crag is easy on the foot too. Use this for easier via ferrata routes and they should be ideal. But the suede upper is not as durable as full leather, while the full rubber rand provided with some boots is better for the scree descent that may be required after the climb. The sole does not have a dedicated smooth climbing area under the toe or the stiffness of other boots here, which reduces climbing performance. This is less of an all-round climbing boot compared to others here.

 

Upper: suede leather, Gore-Tex waterproof lining
Sole: Vibram Nepal
Sizes: 4-13 (men’s); 3-8 (women’s)
Trail fit profile: forefoot 2; heel 2; volume 2; length 2
Crampon compatibility: B0
Weight: 1392g (pair, size 11)
Made in Italy
Stores in UK: England 10; Wales 5; Scotland 4; Ireland 3

Verdict: Buy it if you want a lightweight flexible boot for pure rock routes and particularly shorter via ferrata routes in the Alps.