La Sportiva Miura

MZ_Miura_971The La Sportiva Miura (MSRP $160) needs no introduction. This an awesomely technical, high-performance, do-it-all, “quiver-of-one” climbing shoe. What I love about the Miura is that it excels on all angles and rock types, it is comfortable, and thanks to its unique lacing system, it is exceptionally easy to tie and untie. The angled, low-profile toe box is great for straight-in cracks, liebacking cracks, and all types of edging and face climbing.

There are few negative things to say about this shoe. It has a long break-in period, and the laces can blow out if you’re not careful.

The La Sportiva Miura, aka the “Bananas,” is a perennial favorite among climbers, so much so that if Sportiva ever stopped producing them, their Chiquita-brand colors would have to have to be retired in some kind of climbing shoe hall of fame. I’ve been through numerous pairs of the Miura, and they’ve been with me on everything from sport to trad, boulders to big-wall. I have a hard time imagining a better-fitting, better-performing do-it-all-well shoe.

The Miura has a long break-in period in which the shoe feels too stiff and clunky. Expect anywhere from one week to one month to break these shoes in, depending on how much you climb and how heavy you are. 

The lacing system on the Miura is an ingenious and unique system that allows these shoes to be easily cinched down or opened up. Just pull the laces from the ends and the whole shoe cinches down around your foot—no needling through each criss-cross. However, the laces also tend to blow out early. Expect to replace the shoe laces before you have to get your Bananas resoled.

This is a shoe that can be sized super tight for bouldering and sport-climbing, or loose for all-day wear. True Miura aficionados may own two or three pairs in an array of sizes for that reason.