I usually hate getting new rock shoes—a fact evidenced by the duct-taped, resoled, skunky derelicts that I used before the Scarpa Force. New kicks are painful, it takes a while to trust them, and I always feel like I’m abandoning a friend. But the first time I tugged on the Forces, they fit like a cat in a drainpipe and climbed like a bear in a tree. The deep heel pocket kept my foot lodged precisely where it should be for stability and power, and even with the dual Velcro straps cinched tight, circulation never ceased.

With a more or less flat last and supportive midsole, they’re comfortable enough for multi-pitch routes, but precise enough for bouldering. Edging and feel was great, and these can do anything most climbers could hope to accomplish. Badasses who crave maximum precision—and pain—best look elsewhere, but as an all-arounder, the Force is tough to beat. Available at Schnee’s, Northern Lights, and Timber Trails. $130;