Kim Jacobs and her husband own an international adventure travel company (Mountain Spirits) and take people trekking, skiing and climbing all over the world: Asia, Europe and South America. When Kim is not working, she climbing rocks somewhere on this planet, normally close to where she just finished working be it Utah, Idaho, Thailand, Spain, Italy, Argentina.
I just spent a month in my new Alpina Diamonds and am in love with this shoe! I run hiking and climbing trips and have tested many different shoes over the past 20 years and these shoes rate right up at the very top of the list. They are comfortable, light, durable and come in fun colors that us climbing “dirtbags” can wear to dress up on a night out!
Now, on to the details:
Size: I didn’t have a chance to try them on prior to testing and so I went with my “normal” size (37) and they were a perfect 37. I have a wide foot and they fit perfectly out of the box, no hot spots anywhere. It seems like a narrow foot would fit in these shoes fine as my laces have a ton of room to tighten down.
Performance: I have used the Diamonds mainly as approach shoes. When I got them earlier this spring I was in Moab climbing at Indian Creek. If you have been there then you know that approaches are straight up on sandy trails over sandstone rocks/slabs and most of the time you are carrying a heavy pack. The Diamonds are stiff enough to keep your feet from getting tired yet still soft enough to be able to navigate sandstone slabs without slipping. After the Creek I went to Spain for more of the same and they worked great on the limestone there. They breathe great and my feet have never felt super hot in them which is a huge bonus. During my travels I wore them through endless airports when I normally would have been in flip flops. Last but not least, I have even taken them on short runs (up to 5 miles) and they worked great. I went into this test with a weird foot injury/pain and it is now long gone.
Durability: Besides being dusty, they are showing little wear after 30 days.
Weight: I was surprised at how light they are and love this feature! Many approach shoes are heavy and clunky but these are light without being too soft in the sole. If I need to throw them on my harness or backpack they are light enough to carry along which is a bonus.
BONUS, Fun colors: They come in great colors and make whatever you are wearing much more fun (and somewhat European).
Overall I am thrilled with my Alpina Diamonds and would highly recommend them. These will be going on all of my upcoming trips this summer…hiking in Italy, Nepal and the Rockies. Get some!