Review by: logger1, 2006-06-17
I swear by these.
My foot size is a 9.5, and I wear men's 8 = pretty darn tight. I can fit into a 7.5 but cannot put weight on them without lots of PAIN ! Size 8.5 is good, 9 is big enough to keep my toes straight.
Mad Rock's quality is not fantastic, but their performance is. I climb solid 5.11 in these and love them. Because Mad Rock's not very consistent in its production here are a list of things to look out for:
1. Make sure they are not so tight that you can't walk in them for a minute w/o your toes screaming -> I can walk in mine (size 8) just fine, but my toes go numb after an hour of so.
2. If there is air pockets when you walk around -> then they are WAY too big because they stretch at least half a size. ( These are not made to be loose. )
3. The end of the lacing system may or may not rub against the top of your forth/last toe -> depending on which particular shoe you get.
4. The lacing may rub against the tendon that curls your feet toward your body -> This is not much of a problem because you can always just lossen the last few lacings, where it hurts
5. Heel cup may dig into your Achille's -> again depending on the individual shoe.
6. There's kinda of a lump for some where the dual density goes from thick to thin -> You'll only feel this when you are walking around on hard stuff. It doesn't affect climbing in my case.
7. Finally, there is variation in their sizing by up to 1/4 of a size, again depending on the particular shoe.
Because of these individual variations that I have encountered, I highly recommend trying on the specific pair before you buy them. But once you find the pair that fits you --> It's like wearing a snug pair of rubber socks. They are very precise and flexible, edge well if you develop some foot strength, and smears great. Also, there is no question to its hooking ability, heel or toe ( top or bottom ).
I have Captain's toe ( 2nd toe is longer then first ) and these do not put undue stress on my 2nd toe like the Mad Rock Flash.
Yeah the rubber wears fast, but you can get a $20 Mad Rock or $25 Stealth C4 resole kit -> and it'll last longer than any La Sportiva or Five Ten -> provided you don't abuse the upper or rand.
As a final testment:
I'm a student, I don't make much money, and I own three pairs of these.