The last time I wore an Evolv shoe was six years ago, when I first started climbing. I wore a hole through the 2007 version of the Evolv Elektras, thanked Evolv for a great beginner, intro shoe and moved onto a more aggressive climbing shoe of a different brand. As it came time to buy new shoes over the last six years, I hadn’t much considered Evolv, until the last two years when they began transforming their identity and shoe design, producing much more performance-oriented shoes such as the Evolv Geshido. (It also didn’t hurt to have Chris Sharma and Lisa Rands as part of their design team). Today we review the Geshido SC, which by just looking at it, one can tell that Evolv has stepped up their game. Here’s why:
Fit: As these shoes are stiffer and not as inclined to stretch, getting the right fit is essential. Mary originally ordered the Geshidos in a 37, her average shoe size, and found that she needed an extra inch to squeeze her foot inside. As it turns out, as a unisex shoe, the men’s and women’s sizes do not equate, so keep that in mind when trying on these shoes. We eventually exchanged the shoes for a size 40, which is a much larger size than any of us regularly climbs in and yes, Mary, Missy and I all tried climbing in them – we kind of sound like Goldilocks and the Three Bears in our sizing chart below:
For me (Cate), the snug fit allowed for the heel cup to feel secure and the arch of my foot to feel supported. The toe box was a bit snug, but so long as it wasn’t a super hot, humid day, it felt fine. The shoe has not two but three velcro straps which allow for the shoe to be adjusted perfectly to your foot for more aggressive climbing or for a more relaxed warm-up.
Form: I’m not sure if it’s watching Chris Sharma and Lisa Rands crush in these shoes, or just a very well designed aesthetic looking shoe, but I like the form of the shoe. It is undeniably a performance shoe with a down-turned toe, moderately high arch, and a heel cup meant for heel-hooking: aggressive enough to use on over-hanging climbs, but not so aggressive that it can’t also be used for edging (more on that in Function below). While the heel cup did not suction cup to my heel, it does have a snug, structured form, with no fear of it popping out. The color scheme is appealing but not obnoxious. As a stiff shoe, its form allows for great support while maintaining aggressive capabilities.
Function: I’ve had these shoes for the last three months and have tried them on a variety of surfaces and types of rock – from indoor gyms (both plastic and wood), to granite, schist, and gneiss, these bad boys got to test a little of everything and functioned very well. They use TRAX rubber which is a stiffer rubber and less sensitive but worked well enough for smearing. Where the rubber and shoe’s function really shined though was in its edging abilities. If the majority of climbing you do involves concentrated edging, these are a fantastic choice for you. I appreciate that this shoe provides both the ability to edge well and tackle aggressive, overhanging climbs. Additionally, as someone who likes to spend the majority of my time at the crag barefoot or in flip-flops, the velcro function is key for easy on and off.
Finances: I found these for $116 on backcountry.com, but up to $145, which I’d say is quite a good deal for a performance-based shoe.
Crush Status: Well-rounded keeper! I’m psyched to have these shoes in my toolbox for routes requiring both edging and overhanging capabilities. If you’re looking to make the transfer from your intro shoe into a more performance-based show, these are the shoes for you.