I bought my first pair of Anasazis a couple of years ago, and loved the sticky rubber and precision feel. However, for me the fit of the brown Anasazi VCS was never quite right – wearing a size I could get my feet into, there was always dead space in the heel. This was partly because of the design of the shoe, as the heel cup was intended to force the foot forward into the shoe and so provide more power to the toe, but for me, it just meant an irritating lump sticking out of the back of the shoe (there's since been a redesign of the brown VCR since then). In UseThe new teal colour is likely to stay looking tidy for a bit longer than the old colourway, and also isn’t too girly – which I approve of, but which should also mean that blokes with narrower feet can also wear them without feeling too self-conscious.
The Anasazi LV Velcro has a slightly different heel shape, however, meaning even less dead space, and a more comfortable fit. Although the LV is Low Volume in terms of width, height and heel and made for those with narrow feet, I have fairly wide feet and the shoes were still comfortable after a short amount of wearing in (the only issue is that the two halves of the tongue don’t always meet over my feet if my feet are hot and therefore a bit bigger). The Velcro fastening is more flexible than on the brown Anasazi VCR, which allows you to fasten them more precisely.
The first place I tried them out was bouldering at Black Crag and Long Scar, above the Wrynose Pass in the Lakes. The rock there is super rough volcanic rock, with small pockets and edges for hand and feet, and excellent smearing. Here the Anasazi LV excelled itself, with the precision toe and stiffness of the shoe making it ideal for this sort of rock. Next up was a trip to Almscliff. So how would the Anasazi LV fare on Yorkshire grit? I have to admit to not being the most ardent lover of Yorkshire gritstone bouldering (unless it’s Crookrise). Plus, with the shoe feeling so stiff and precise on Lakes volcanics, surely it wouldn’t perform as well on the grit? Close UpFortunately I was wrong, and I happily skipped up a balancy problem I’d been unable to master on previous trips. With some more wearing in and a bit of softening up, I think these boots would be excellent on grit too.
Indoors, they are particularly good for edging and small pockets, but performed well when smearing too. The Velcro fastening makes them easy to slip off between routes, or to just loosen them off whilst belaying.
It’s probably fair to say that there are more comfortable women’s/low volume shoes around for longer routes and routes up to HVS (for example, the Five Ten Siren) However, for precision and stickiness for mid to higher grade routes and boulder problems without sacrificing too much in the way of comfort, these should do the job nicely.