The Miura's Vibram XS Edge rubber is hard. It edges like a razor blade, and effortlessly holds the down-turned toe in pockets. When new, the hardness of the rubber makes the shoe feel very stiff and imprecise, especially to lighter climbers. The patience to learn how to climb in this shoe is rewarded, however, particularly after they've softened up. Expect a longer than normal wear in period, compared to many other La Sportiva models.
The sizing of this shoe depends on where you want to take them: size them ultra tight (2+ sizes down from your street shoe) for your sport or bouldering projects, or just a half to a full size down for all-day adventure routes. They're so good we'd almost consider buying both sizings.
The lacing system is slick, completing an easy-to-slip-on package that provides a secure fit with minimal fiddling. They're also durable, with a tough upper, and soles that will outlast the brilliant color — as well as your first set of laces.
Taking the Miuras to the beach, CA.
For years, the Miura set the standard for edging shoes, all of its iterations an improvement over the last. They have a decently down-turned shape, but its real edging power is derived from the XS Edge rubber of its sole. It doesn't have the molded P3 midsole of the other popular La Sportiva models, so you'll have to do a little more heavy lifting to get the same results when edging. This difference in the midsole doesn't seem to contribute to foot fatigue, but is noticeable on the really hard stuff.
This shoe is a beast, protecting your foot from all the damage you're trying to do by jamming and twisting it in cracks. The Miura has taken to the big days on big walls as well as it has to the hard sport and bouldering it was originally designed for. It has been around for a while though, and a lot of shoes have come out in the last few years that are worth considering if you're looking to make the transition into trad. Depending on what margin of advantage you're looking for, the Miura will do the job almost anywhere.
Smith Rock edge testing, Smith Rocks, OR.
The Miura is great, but not perfect on pockets. It's not as steeply down-turned as many contemporary high-end sport shoes, but they can still sneak into pockets and let you pull yourself into the rock. It only feels less than amazing when compared to most aggressive modern designs. This shoe is incredibly versatile, but can't expect it to thrive in very steep terrain as well as a shoe specifically engineered for that purpose.
This shoe cranks on small features that you can't even feel, which is both good and bad. All the hard rubber encasing your toe lets you push down hard, but significantly diminishes the sensitivity of the shoe. On the other hand, the stiffness of the sole provides support, which reduces foot fatigue on long, less-than-vertical pitches.
McKenzie Long using the smear power of the Miuras.
The Miura has to fit your footwell and be sized appropriately to wear all day. After wearing in, the shoe can be very comfortable. Expect a reasonably long wear-in time though. If you size this shoe for its originally intended purpose — hard sport, and bouldering — it won't be a wear all-day shoe. Sized a half size to a full size down as a trad shoe, it is very comfortable on all-day routes. The Miura can be tricky to fit to your foot, because it won't feel immediately comfortable no matter how you size it.
The flatter fit of the original Miura (left) makes them a better all-arounder and generally more comfortable than the Miura VS (right).
Depending on how you use them, you may only need one shoe for all your climbing. If this is your quiver-of-one climbing shoe, then the value increases considerably. Used purely as a sport shoe, and being not nearly as comfortable or as adaptable as many other high-end shoes in this application, they won't do it all. They are durable, easily resoled, and a known quantity in terms of performance.
falls behind the several specially-designed shoes when it comes to pure high-end sport climbing/bouldering. It also lacks the flat sole and high-top upper that make some shoes so comfortable on the biggest days. But it still does both styles of climbing well enough that it can easily stand in on your harder sends with minimal compromise. This shoe is still being used by cutting-edge climbers around the world, a testament to its versatility and longevity in a rapidly expanding sport.