The Scarpa Zen Pro manages to push the boundaries of what’s possible in terms of performance from an all-round multi-activity shoe. It has a suede leather upper with some synthetic overlays, a rubber rand at the toe and minimal stitching, which means it’s going to be very durable. There is no waterproof lining inside, though, so this is not the best option for wet terrain. But the toe box is much firmer than most, making it ideal for rockier ground. The heel cup is also firm while the sole unit is much stiffer than most multi-activity shoes, both toe to heel and laterally, and this makes the Scarpa Zen Pro much more suitable for using on rocky ground. It also has a deep studded outsole so getting a grip on wet grass or mud is much easier with this shoe than many others. But there’s also a smooth ‘climbing zone’ under the toe for precise climbing performance. On the foot the fit is closer and neater, particularly around the toes, making this ideal for scrambling over rocks. The Scarpa Zen Pro’s studded sole is ideal for approaching crags over muddy ground while the durability means the shoe should be a reliable workhorse year after year. The niggle is the lack of waterproof lining, which means that although the studded sole may allow you to tackle wet and muddy terrain you may get wet feet. It’s also quite heavy at 1176g (pair, size 11).
Upper material suede leather, synthetic and rubber overlays
Waterproof lining none
Sole unit Vibram Spyder 2
Men’s sizes 41-48
Women’s sizes 37-42
Weight 1176g (pair, size 11)
The Scarpa Zen Pro is a superb all-round shoe for scrambling, walking or lightweight backpacking, but its range is limited to dry terrain as there is no waterproof lining.
Review by Graham Thompson
Published in Trail magazine May 2014