I am not ashamed that I prefer high-quality, great-performance gear. I also like the best shoes. La Sportiva Tarantula was my first pair and has been my favourite climbing shoe.
Before deciding which shoes I wanted for my climbing, I researched various brands. But, once again, I bought a product from La Sportiva.
It is the ease of putting on the shoe that I first notice. Some shoes are difficult to put on and can be time-consuming. The La Sportiva Tarantula is easy to slip on thanks to its laces-free design. It is cleverly designed, with opposite locking straps that can be adjusted up or down and tightened/loosened.
Design & Materials
The La Sportiva Tarantula shoe is an entry-level climbing shoe. It’s slightly more aggressive than regular beginner shoes. The La Sportiva Tarantula has a flat sole and a rigid profile. It also features a last that is low in asymmetry, which improves performance and technical precision. This shoe is a good choice for beginners, although it may initially be a bit unusual. Once their feet get used to it, they can climb much faster with this shoe than a non-asymmetrical beginner shoe.
Comfort and wear are the main features of the La Sportiva Tarantula. The unlined upper will offer maximum comfort once it has been worn. La Sportiva’s Frixion RS rubber sole is extra durable and will not wear out before you have reached a level where it’s necessary to replace the shoe. The stiff sole offers maximum support for feet not used to climbing shoes and will perform well on vertical climbing.
La Sportiva Tarantula’s leather upper is comfortable and feels great around my feet. It is not lined so the leather can get hot in the shoe, but it is manageable. La Sportiva’s FriXion rubber soles performed well against the rock, with very little slip. This is alarmingly sticky. However, the front hook of the La Sportiva Tarantula Climbing Shoe is not very long. This means that technically more difficult routes may be possible.
Performance & Functioning
La Sportiva’s FriXion (r. RS) rubber is included with the shoe. FriXion (r. rubber) will not grip as well as other rubber options such as the Vibram S edge or Stealth C4. There is always a compromise between performance and durability. We shouldn’t expect to get the premium rubber found in high-end performance shoes at a lower price.
Velcro closures are a feature I love that allows for super-quick on/offs. This is a very important feature as I don’t like being bothered by time-consuming ons or offs.
This velcro system also makes it easier to “lock” your shoe in the desired position, allowing you to feel better while climbing.
The Tarantula is a versatile climbing shoe that offers comfort and versatility. The Tarantula is an excellent all-around shoe for both beginners and experienced climbers. This is a great entry-level shoe for beginners. However, it’s not the best choice for experienced climbers. However, the price is very reasonable for what you get.