I just ordered a pair of size 38.5 (M) EU La Sportiva Kataki climbing shoes to try out. I stepped back from the Katakis for a while to sort out the sizing of different La Sportiva shoe models and I still hold the opinion that the Katakis are sized slightly large. That’s going to turn out to be perfect, though, because if I can get the Katakis to fit like the Otakis do (the Velcro version of this shoe), then I’ll be golden!!! I need a good all-around shoe and the La Sportiva Otaki climbing shoes are the ones it looks like I’ll be trying out on the rock for this purpose as soon as the weather clears up. I would, however, like the laced version and the shoes that I’ve drooled over ever since La Sportiva announced them and I was the first at my gym to have them – the La Sportiva Kataki (Mens) climbing shoes. These are fantastic shoes, and if I can get the right fit with them, they’ll be outstanding as my go-to, all-around climbing shoes!!! I just have to get the right size broken in just right. This has been a process for me with the Otakis and the Katakis both. I decided to go with my gut on the La Sportiva Otakis, and it helped that a neighboring climbing gym that was two and a half hours away had a pair of these in the size I thought I needed so that I could try them on. I wanted to buy them on the spot, but waited a week to think on it and then drove back up there to purchase them the next weekend. My Otakis are size 38.5 (M) EU and just a smidge large for their size as far as La Sportiva shoes go, which is perfect for my feet. The Katakis, I hope, are going to fit the same way. If the Katakis fit like the Otakis do, I’ll have my quiver of shoes full and won’t have to purchase any more for awhile. I might have to purchase a second pair of Katakis for when the inevitable resole event comes up (I have a rule to always, always, always have a back-up pair of shoes that I like and/or wear a lot), but other than that, I foresee a bright future for me with the Katakis, provided they fit like their Velcro counterpart, the Otakis.
I love La Sportiva’s shoe design as far as the fit goes. La Sportiva shoes just fit my feet. They’re the only brand that consistently gives my forefoot enough room without putting my little toes to sleep or otherwise cutting off the circulation to some part of my foot. Scarpa is said to have a wider forefoot, but I haven’t found this to be the case at all. I have a wide forefoot and the Scarpa climbing shoes are always too narrow for my feet. The approach shoes from Scarpa fit my feet better than the La Sportiva approach shoes, however, which I find very interesting. Anyway, that’s a post in itself and will likely become a series of posts much like the Sunday Sesh series, or possibly part of it. We’ll see. For now, try on some climbing shoes and find your fit!!!