New Year came and went, I was climbing, just like I was climbing on Xmass day. New Years present were a pair of Maestro rock climbing shoes from Scarpa. What are they good for, well a lot it has to be said!
The Maestro is a robust climbing shoe, a kind of 4 by 4.
Scarpa are very much known for their innovative designs in rock climbing shoes as well as in their mountain climbing and trail running, so it is almost a shock to see this retro looking shoe. Is very much designed with Traditional side of climbing, crack and granite long periods of wear, and with a highish ankle cover and a little extra padding their for good measure.
The Maestro is good looking show with lots of foot protection. This shoe will last a long time and should take a very good resole!
How chunky is it, how hard can it climb, is it good value. Lots of questions, lots of answers, but the answers and questions will be different for different people. Is it worth a look-most certainly. If this is your normal kinda shoe, for sure it is top end contender.
Edge rubber not Grip 2, a very important difference, for sharp rock or crystal stepping.
I normally only climb in Grip 2 rubber but I have half my climbing here on Gozo on a sandstone like shoe eating rock! I will be using the Maestro on those particularly for guiding! Could I climb 8a in these shoes-yes but I would be way happier in something more suitable. The only really hard climbs I might try in these are Chamonix and Veedavoo type stuff, where to go without ankle protection is to invite skin grafts.
A solid heel, you will be able to back foot in cracks with confidence, and it is instep withe the rest of the shoe as for durability.
The Maestro is not cheap but it will out last many if not all shoes!With the right sizing it is an all day shoe, as always make sure it fits you, sizing and particle shape of shoe are the final deciders of whether you should buy.
Here is the Maestro side by side with the Drago, comparing chalk with cheese here, but you should understand that it is horses for courses. Multiple shoes for a climbing enthusiast are a must unfortunately.
Maestro on the left Drago on the right. There is a slight down turn on the Maestros toe box, which is essential on a precision shoe but the general Last or shape of the shoe is flat.
Just enough protection, free at the back so you can point the foot down, a padded tongue and little pads around the ankles will all protect. The general feel of the foot containment is a bit boxish, due to generous amounts of rubber going along and down the fore foot for about 4 inches, this will lessen any feelings of squeezed foot in cracks and foot jams.
The lacing system is very good and is not flus with the top but recessed in, I think this is a very good feature and will prolong the life of laces and also prevent lace eyelet pain.