The Testarossa MkII will please devotees of the early 2000s original, and route climbers alike, and is a worthwhile addition to La Sportiva's extensive rock shoe range, says Nick Brown.
Having worked on both and worn the new Mago a lot, the 2 are very different. The Mago is lighter, more asymmetric and far more flexible so much more big toe focused. The sole patch on the Mago is much smaller making it feel far softer, and the heel is closer fitting and has better hooking ability. The feedback I’ve received from most Testarossa users is that they miss the old shoe, and dislike the bulky solid heel! I see a big increase in resole requests on originals as a result.
For me the Mago is the better choice, but each to their own
My old Testarossas died the death after the last resole. I always resoled in C4 and they were the best shoes I’ve ever worn, best looking too. I never had an issue with the heel, and actually found the bagginess there a bit of a shock absorber latching heel hooks.
No idea about limestone pockets, but what the old shoe was amazing for was standing on marginal edges and nubbins, especially on hard techy bouldering. So many times I've struggled on a problem with other shoes then put the Testarossas on... Suddenly easy! I hope the new ones have the same precision edging powers, but in the meantime I've stocked up with another pair of the old ones to keep me going.
Somewhat surprising to read the lack of enthusiasm for these new Testarossas; for me they are the best all round sport shoe I’ve owned for the 7a-8a bracket on granite or limestone. Super comfortable straight out the box and they excel on anything vertical and steeper, edges or pockets. Maybe my feet are weird but they heelhook better than my solutions too.
> Maybe my feet are weird but they heelhook better than my solutions too.
Mountaineering Scotland is urging hill goers to prepare for the clocks going back this weekend. They are asking every person in the hills to pack a headtorch - and a spare - as British summertime comes to an end.