How do I choose the best canyoning shoes?

 Looking for the best canyoning shoes? CanyonZone will help you choose which canyoning shoes to invest in, along with a comparison of the most popular canyoning shoes available on the market today.


Choosing the best canyoning shoes isn't an exact science, but given the environmental variables we encounter while canyoning, there are a few things to keep in mind. Let's take a look at some of the variables:

-How good the grip and adhesion is
-The durability of the shoe
-How comfortable are the shoes during approach and descent

We will take a closer look at each of these points


Grip is arguably the most important feature of canyoning shoes, and the canyoneers normally base their decision on which canyoning shoes to invest. Canyoning shoes that provide good grip reinforce a canyoneer's confidence in their ability, especially in trickier sections. Technology has evolved and today the materials used are specifically designed for wet environments, increasing adhesion to rock surfaces.

The sole design also aids with traction on muddy terrain, especially when approaching.


Durability is another measure of canyoning shoes: the harsh conditions of use demand extraordinary durability and resistance as we walk through the canyons. The stitching and gluing must be of good quality to withstand the constant hitting that we expose the shoes to; the tongue has to go through countless descents to make it worthwhile.

The last construction of the canyoning shoes must also protect the canyoneer's feet from impacts against rocks and also in technical maneuvers, such as protecting the rope from wear and tear with the feet.


Comfort may be overlooked, but on demanding approaches and long descents, choosing the most comfortable canyoning shoes should be part of your decision making. Comfort does not only mean cushioning, but also protection and insulation: you are likely to descend a canyon with fresh and cool water, so these factors should be considered when choosing canyoning shoes.

Shoes that are not too heavy also help us conserve energy as we progress up the canyon.

Canyoneers in subtropical regions can benefit from shoes that provide more insulation, while in tropical and warm regions canyoning shoes that dissipate heat well and keep feet cool may be the best choice.


We have selected the most popular canyoning shoes in the market: the Adidas Terrex Hydrolace, the Fiveten Canyoneer 3, the Bestard Canyon Guide and the Mont Bell Sawer Climber.


  By far the most balanced of any canyoning shoes currently in the market, the Adidas Hydrolace 2023 is a favourite amongst professional & recreational canyoneers around the world. Adidas has invested considerably on the development of these shoes, with testing held in multiple locations from New Zealand to Bali and USA.

Since acquiring FiveTen in 2011, Adidas has also held the patent for the Stealth© rubber compound, a favourite amongst climbers. The main feature of the Adidas Hydrolace canyoning shoes is the use of the Stealth© rubber for the outsole: it is a variation of the same Stealth C4© rubber used on FiveTen climbing shoes and provides superb grip in any condition.

The Adidas Hydrolace shoes are extremely comfortable benefiting from Adidas’ expertise in the sneakers industry; they are also built to last through extensive testing and Terrex adventure footwear knowledge. The shoes provide excellent insulation even in the coldest of waters. The downside is its weight when wet: it becomes heavy due to the lack of drainage and water absorption by the neoprene used in the lining.


 Bestard’s main canyoning boots are designed with the canyoning guide in mind. Featuring an integrated gaiter to keep rocks & sand from coming in and an orange fabric on the body, it provides excellent ankle protection and is super lightweight. THe Bestard Canyon Guide’s outsole is a Vibram™ Idrogrip, which works well in wet environments but is sub-par in some rock types such as schist. We find that the grip improves after a bit of wear. Bestard offers a free resole of the shoes when worn out: you must cover the shipping costs to their workshop in Europe. The laces tighten all the way from the ankle to the toes, providing excellent fit according to your taste.

It is worth mentioning that Bestard has some new additions to its line of canyoning shoes, namely the Wildwater Pro which seems to follow the trend of black and red canyoning shoes.


 (Not standard in our range).

The Mont Bell Sawer Climber is little known in the canyoning community: a good explanation is that it is not marketed as canyoning shoes, but as shower climbing shoes. Shower climbing is quite similar to canyoning, but instead of descending a canyon, shower climbers go up, climbing waterfalls and traversing sections. It is a popular sport in Taiwan and Japan. The Sawer Climber is super lightweight and fits snugly on the feet due to its lace system, providing a climbing shoe feel. Its body construction is in mesh which provides excellent drainage but poor insulation, therefore it is a nice option for tropical climates. The Sawer Climber uses Mont Bell’s Aquagrip outsole, which provides excellent grip in all conditions, in and out of the canyon. Mont Bell also offers a felt sole which works great when walking on rocks but wears quite quickly: we’d go for the Aquagrip sole any day.

One of the downsides of these canyoning shoes is that they provide little protection for the feet, and can deteriorate quite quickly if subject to harsh & abrasive environments.

Fitwell Technology

Fitwell AquatorFitwell brand footwear, the result of skilled craftsmanship that each worker performs with passion and rigor at the Pederobba (TV) factory, capable of producing handmade shoes characterized by the quality of the Made in Italy, an element that recognized all over the world.

The design taking into account the needs of the reference market and the careful research of materials are the basis of the complex production process that leads to the creation of the first prototypes, entrusted to a team of highly qualified athletes who are committed to testing them and developing the company. provide valuable ideas for perfecting shoes.

As an international guarantee of quality, functionality and safety, Fitwell footwear is purposely built on different lasts, specific to use and with anatomical fits that deliver a very high level of comfort and reliability.

La Sportiva

La Sportiva TX Canyon

The main goal of La Sportiva S.p.A. and the basis of its activities is customer satisfaction with respect for the environment.

The R&D department is constantly looking for innovative and targeted solutions, to guarantee a product that meets your most demanding and advanced technical requirements, offering you safety and comfort in use, also thanks to the latest equipment.

All processes necessary to run production undergo periodic checks, and for each of these processes we establish performance indicators that set continuous targets for improvement, providing our company with the essential resources in terms of quantity and quality, personnel, information and training, infrastructure and working environment.
Our driving force is passion, our passion is the mountains

We are committed to complying with environmental, quality and occupational safety regulations and sensitive data, as required by current regulations.

As a final recommendation and summary.

Using the above factors to choose the best canyoning shoes for your canyoning practice will give you more confidence as you progress in the canyon. Did we miss any shoes? Please contact us.

Hydrolace 2021 Adidas or the latest model

Heavy when wet
4.5 / 5

Sawer Climber Mont-Bell

Foot protection
Poor insulation

Canyon Guide Bestard

Ankle support
Weird style
3.8 / 5

NB: Taken from BASECAMP 

If desired, see also:
 Which shoe size do I need?     
 How do I break in my shoes properly?
How do I choose the best canyoning shoes?

Overview Canyoning knowledge base: Go back.


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