Unlike the two other approach shoes reviewed the Wildfire shoes are 100 per cent synthetic with no thick suede panels. Instead they are made of a tough ballistic mesh that is protected by a latticework of stiff material. There’s also a thick protective rand that runs right round the shoe, reinforced with rubber round the toe. The mesh makes the shoes very breathable – you can blow through it – and thus good for hot weather.

The lacing, through eyelets, runs down to the toe to ensure a precise and close fit. The shoes also come with two-part footbeds so the volume can be adjusted. I found the fit fine with just the upper part of the footbeds.

The tread is almost smooth at the toe for balance on small holds and there’s little cushioning under the forefoot so there’s good contact with the rock. The heel is well-cushioned. The main part of the sole gives good grip. The sole is quite stiff, which is good for support when climbing but not so good for walking, not that I would want to walk long distances in these.

 First published October 2013.

Overview

  • Overall: 4 out of 5

Pros: breathable, secure fit

Cons: quite heavy

  • Details: PRICE Ј110 UPPER reinforced ballistic mesh LINING synthetic MIDSOLE under heel only OUTSOLE Vibram Tech Approach Evo WEIGHT 938 grams SIZES men 6-13, women 3-9
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