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Who invented the first climbing shoe?
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spydermonkey


Jul 31, 2002, 10:29 AM
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Who invented the first climbing shoe?
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I was just pondering to myself one day while climbing in the McDowell Mtn., who invented the first climbing shoe and how did they get the idea?

spydermonkey


hollyclimber


Jul 31, 2002, 11:36 AM
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From our own rockclimbing.com, the history of Royal Robbins includes his invention of the first dedicated climbing shoe.

http://www.rockclimbing.com/athlete/view.php?ID=Royal_Robbins


spydermonkey


Aug 1, 2002, 8:58 AM
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Thanks for the info. That is some interesting facts and knowledge.

spydermonkey


jgill


Aug 9, 2002, 1:49 PM
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I don't mean to slight my old friend, Royal, but shoes designed for rock climbing appeared before either of us took to the rock. I suspect cloth-soled slippers may go back to the 1800s, but this is only a guess. My first rock shoes(about 1956) were Zillertals (Austrian) - like a very light mountaineering boot, suede uppers and black rubber soles with a slight lug pattern. Very stiff - you could edge on anything and friction on nothing!. In the late 1950s I bought a pair of PAs (French - by Pierre Allain), which looked very much like today's climbing shoes - smooth thin rubber sole with a canvas upper. If you go to "John Gill's Photos" I'm wearing these on Blacktail Butte.
Royal designed a combination mountaineering boot and rock shoe particularly suitable for the long, big walls(aid) of Yosemite and elsewhere around 1960 or so - I'm not sure of the date. It was very effective for the times.


jbone


Aug 9, 2002, 2:10 PM
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Huh?

Someone makes a shoe that Climbs. Does it set up draws too?? ha ha...

it's Friday. Yeaaaaahhhh...

J-Bone


billcoe_


Aug 13, 2002, 9:45 PM
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John: I thought Kronhaufers (sic?) were the prefered climbing shoes in the valley before PA'S or RR's?

I suspect Europeans were using variations of light mountaineering boots for rock climbing fairly early on too.



Regards:

Bill


jds100


Aug 15, 2002, 9:38 AM
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Thanks, especially John and Bill. (I keep forgetting where the initials for PA came from, and now I'll this resource to go back to.)

Weren't there the old rop-soled shoes, too, used by Europeans? And, of course, the hobnailed shoes/boots?

Does anyone know of a particularly good resource, book or internet, for the history of climbing, including matters such as this (gear development)? Thanks.


cyberclimber


Aug 15, 2002, 10:35 AM
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Hey John
Thanks for the post and correction and history. It is so great to be able to hear from a living legend. Thanks for setting such a fine example and for being willing to share your knowledge and memories with us.
May your love for the rock never die.


jgill


Aug 16, 2002, 9:01 PM
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PA = Pierre Allain. Yes, Kronhoffers were popular also. If I remember correctly (no guarantees!) they were more flexible than Zillertals. I had a pair or two. RDs(Rene Demaisson?) came out in the 60s and were stiffer than PAs, with suede uppers and smooth black rubber soles. They were really good for that era, but pre-sticky rubber. Rope and cloth soled shoes probably go back to the 1800s, and of course hobnailed boots were used earlier. Last I heard John Sherman was getting into hobnails!
(let's start the rumor at least!)

[ This Message was edited by: jgill on 2002-08-16 22:24 ]


apollodorus


Aug 16, 2002, 9:19 PM
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GOTCHA! Since you didn't specify rock climbing, I get to say that the first climbing shoes were the nailed boots that first appreared in Zermat sometime around 1850. They didn't have crampons back then, eh?


dee


Jan 16, 2004, 2:11 PM
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It was Charles Cole (5.10 Co. fame) in about 1935.

 

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