Finding Your Sole
Rubber matters! Stack the odds in your favour by choosing a sole that suits your style of climbing or bouldering.
We offer a large selection of compounds and thicknesses to choose from:
Five Ten Stealth C4 (3.5 mm)
Vibram Grip (3.5 mm)
Vibram Grip (5.0 mm) (+$5 per pair)
Vibram XS Grip (4.0 mm) (+$5 per pair)
Vibram XS Grip 2 (4.0 mm) (+$5 per pair)
Vibram XS Edge (4.0 mm) (+$5 per pair)
So which rubber is best? …all of them, but for different situations.
Before choosing a rubber, we recommend considering how each of the following points will affect your climbing:
Softer rubbers (e.g. XS Grip 2, XS Grip) tend to provide better grip on overhanging terrain, slopers, and slippery holds or slippery rock.
Harder rubbers (Stealth C4, XS Edge) tend to provide better grip on very small footholds and edges, especially on vertical terrain. They also tend to provide more durability.
Thinner rubbers will provide more sensitivity, and excel on overhangs and slopers, but will come with a loss of durability.
Thicker rubbers will provide more stiffness, and help with edgeing on vertical terrain with small footholds and edges. They will offer more durability than their thinner counterparts
Light climbers should generally aim for softer rubbers and avoid 5.0 mm thicknesses, while heavier climbers should consider the harder compounds and medium to high thickness.
A note on sensitivity and stiffness:
Shoes with a very stiff midsole and structure will not see the same sensitivity change from different sole thicknesses or compounds. For example, putting a 4.0 mm sole on a pair of La Sportiva Tarantulas (originally 5.0 mm) would have an undramatic effect on sensitivity because the shoes have a very stiff midsole, so the total stiffness of the shoe is not as heavily dependant on the sole. However, a soft shoe like a Python or a Moccasym will be heavily affected by sole thickness and compound, because the sole is the main contributor to stiffness.
If you are still unsure, please reach out! We love helping you get the most out of your shoes.