NEW Boreal Kintaro

REVIEW

Monday, 2 November

Boreal KINTARO II

By Ignacio Sandoval Burón & Esteban Diez Fernández

text-autospace:none"> Developed from the first version of the Kintaro, which we had previously written about a few years ago, this latest version has a few novelties we’d like to point out after having tried them for a period of six months.    text-autospace:none">



text-autospace:none">LAST

In general terms we can say that this is a climbing shoe with quite an accentuated foot arch, this enables us to wear them really tight on this part of our anatomy. It's a quite asymmetric shoe, besides we also find that the big toe part is slightly downturned which helps improve the performance on big overhangs and small holds.

As was the case with the old ones and all of the climbing shoes from this brand from Spain that have gone through our hands in the last years, we’ve observed a loose-fitting forefoot last which leaves ample space for the toes. Reference the heel, we have the feeling that the space has been slightly reduced. 

It comes with a midsole which, like everything else in this shoe, is of a medium hardness.

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Lastly, they continue to have the V2 Rand™, a 2-part rand in the form of a “Y” that tenses the heel by pulling from two points.

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Dani Andrada showing the grip of the female version rubber. Pic: climbing.deYuji Hirayama did basically the same with the old version of the Lynx model which also comes with the same rubber.


text-autospace:none">SOLE

They continue to assemble the Zenith™ rubber, which in the last years has been the company’s personal bet, fortunately leaving to one side the numerous problems they had with the old Fusion.

You probably still remember when this new rubber appeared, the videos and photos that flooded the internet where you could see the soles of both climbing shoes literally stick together as if it was a magic trick (look at the image of Dani Andrada or watch Yuji Hirayama’s video above)…

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The thickness has been reduced. Before, when you wore them for the first time you found that they had a gross of 5 mm, which barely permitted the sufficient sensibility to notice where we were putting our feet. Now, with the 4-4.5 mm thickness this issue has been improved, although when they best feel is when we’ve worn them out a little.

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text-autospace:none">HEEL

The heel has been raised a few centimetres both in the inner part (to accommodate those with high heel spurs) as well as the external rubber, which now goes up a bit further as opposed to the previous ones which went up half-way up the heel.

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Besides, in the past, this rubber spur was smooth and now it’s ribbed, offering a better performance on heel hooks.

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Esteban Diez climbing with the new Boreal 'Kintaro' in Pedrosa (León). Pic© Ignacio Sandoval Burón.

text-autospace:none">CLOSING SYSTEM text-autospace:none">

Here we’ve found a big difference regarding the first version, the typical cushioned Lycra sock tongue has been replaced with a more innovative foam neoprene fabric. Additionally, they have reduced its length and width, achieving a more aesthetic look (it doesn’t stick out as much as it used to) and also so skipping the part where you had to carefully place the left-over tongue to avoid the uncomfortable crease over the foot.  

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text-autospace:none">FEMALE VERSION text-autospace:none">

We’ve also had the chance to test the women’s version with very girly colours (purple and pink). We feel it’s important to stress that they have been designed for narrower feet with a low and slim heel.

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Ignacio Sandoval testing the same climbing shoes on the rock of Piedrasecha (León).
Pic© Esteban Diez Fernandez.

text-autospace:none">CONCLUSION

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All in all, it’s a good climbing shoe that performs medium to well in all terrains. We therefore classify them as versatile, highlighting the excellent adherence of their Zenith™ rubber and the great comfort of a spacious last that provides major comfort than other climbing shoes for those with wide feet or those who have to wear them for long periods of time (multi-pitch climbers or those who train for long hours at the climbing gym).

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A different shot with Esteban Diez. Pic© Ignacio Sandoval Burón.


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