The new Five Ten Anasazi Lace Up V2, is the latest incarnation of the famous pink Anasazi Lace Up, originally released in 1996/97. Over its lifespan the Lace Up Pinks, or “Pinkies” as they were affectionately known, became the trusted weapon of choice to a great many mid and elite grade climbers alike. The release of the Five Ten Verde, in 2006, saw the phasing out of the Pinks, with most people – including, I suspect, Five Ten – at the time thinking this was the updated replacement of the acclaimed Pink. It soon became apparent that despite the improvement of the notoriously poor heel cup, donned by the Pink, the Verde had been altered in other ways, making it a good but different foot tool. The de-tensioning of the heel, softening of the mid-sole and higher levels volume offered in the toe box, meant the die hard Pinks fan was starting to wonder whether they should have stockpiled a few of their old friends. As the voices of dissent grew louder, Five Ten announced that they were aware of these issues all along and that the Verde was never intended as a replacement for the Pinks. With that we saw the release, in July 2008, of the brand new Anasazi Lace Up V2/Blanco. So I guess the question on everyone’s lips was “is this the true heir to the throne?” Well having used the V2’s for over two months now, I can categorically reply, “yes”.
The design of the V2 addresses the issues that became apparent in the Verde; that of volume, rigidity and the de-tensioning of the heel. All these areas have been restored to similar levels of the old Pink, with the added bonus of the excellently fitting “Magic Fingers” heel cup, an already well tried and tested feature, having been in use on both the Verde and Anasazi VC for a couple of years. The V2 also comes with a Stealth C4 sole unit, opposed to the Stealth Onyx sole used on the Verde and Anasazi VC. Whether this is a good, bad or indifferent point depends on when, where and how hard you climb. The Onyx is marginally stickier in cooler conditions and loses some cohesion in warmer climes, with the opposite being true of C4 – i.e. sticker and more coherent in warmer conditions. In either case the differences are negligible and can only be noticed at the hard to elite end of the grading scale. The average consumer need not concern themselves overly with these minor nuances.
Construction & Fit
Being constructed of a synthetic Cowdura upper and lined with a synthetic material, the V2 is vegan friendly and gives way to very little stretch. Also of note, for those unfamiliar with the Pink incarnation, is the fact that these shoes tend to be quite narrow in the forefoot and have a generally low volume throughout. As mentioned above, the heel is quite heavily tensioned – to improve heel hooking and overall fit – which can cause irritation on the Achilles heel in some people. If this is the case the Verde may be a better option. Finally, the sizing on most of the newer Five Ten shoes – the V2 included – is larger than in the past. As such you may need to drop a further half to full size beyond what you would have had to in the old Pinks – see our rock shoe sizing guide here for further details.
As with the all the shoes in the Anasazi series the ability to fit the V2 in a variety of ways allows the shoe to cover many bases. Worn tight there is no limit to what a climber could achieve in these shoes, where as fitted in a more relaxed manner they will perform equally well as an all day mid-grade multi pitch shoe. That said you maybe sailing into the realms of overkill if you were to buy these shoes and not be at least operating in the lower E-grades. As mentioned earlier the V2 has a slightly more solid upper and is a little stiffer than the Verde, therefore if you’re after a shoe for more smeary territory or something that will soften up quickly then the Verde maybe worth considering.
Any solid and frequently active climber who fits this shoe could do a lot worse than buying a pair of the awesome Lace Up Blanco - white is categorically the new Pink!