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Five Ten Dragon Lace Climbing Shoe
The New Five Ten Dragon - there's a reason this shoe is named after such an aggressive beast. Updated for 2019, the "ultimate bouldering shoe" is back! It keeps the same last but with some improvements and new features. It now has a split sole, with the same thickness and stiffness in the front but with a soft midsole and thinner rubber in the heel combined with an updated heel shape. This gives more flexibility and therefore better fitting into the arch. It's extreme asymmetry combined with a thin layer of 3.5 mm Stealth® HF™ rubber give it expert precision, a high level of sensitivity, and a grip that will make you feel like your hooking with dragon's claws. The HF™ (high-friction) rubber compound has been specially developed for overhanging and steep problems where you are unable to exert as much downforce on a hold - i.e., this rubber grips harder with less effort required by you to make it stick. This is a highly aggressive, highly high-performance climbing shoe, not designed for the faint of feet.
With a microfibre inner with microfibre lining the shoes feel comfortable straight out of the box and means the Dragon will have the absolute minimum amount of stretch.
There is more rubber over the toe, to give enhanced toe hooking. The lacing system is asymmetric, this gives a more ergonomic fit and also allows for an extended toe rand to protect when toe-hooking and give more contact friction on the top of the shoe. Laces will give a more accurate fit if you have a very wide or narrow foot. They are intended to be fit extremely snugly to achieve the highest level of performance possible.
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HF stands for "high friction", and that's just what you get. The HF compound requires less downward force to achieve friction, meaning that it excels on overhanging terrain where the feet exert less power than the arms.
3 product reviews
I purchased size UK 10 since it's the same as in my new Hiangles. After a few sessions they've broken in but they're still noticeably more snug in the toes than hiangles. That said, they're extremely sensitive and nice and tight in the heel. Indoors I wear them laces open so they're supple enough for boxes. I also tried them on technical slab granite with laces pulled tight and the sensitivity was extremely useful on smears and micro-edges. That said, my toes were on fire after a couple ascents...
I was initially attracted to this shoe because of the price but the peformance is really good, they are great for steep bouldering. Intially hey are quite stiff but they soften up quite well. The heel fits my foot perfectly and the laces make it so that I don't have to wear them too tight for the heel to stay on.
These shoes are great on small foothold particularly on overhangs and the stealth rubber is the best I've ever used and provides excellent smearing ability despite the aggressive downturn.