Who should buy the Scarpa Mescalito

The Mescalito is an excellent Scarpa shoe, thanks to its combination of positive traits and capabilities. It is a solid option if you:

  • Prefer an approach shoe that promises lasting protection against the ruggedness of the terrain with its reinforced construction.
  • Prefer an approach shoe that has the ability to stick to most outdoor surfaces
  • Prefer an approach shoe that provides walking comfort on level terrain.

Scarpa Mescalito logo

Excellent grip performance

Owners can travel across a variety of terrain with adequate grip performance on the Mescalito’s Vibram Litebase outsole. The name its developers gave it—Litebase—is the design technology that makes it as light as possible (being about 40 to 50% thinner than a regular outsole).

Scarpa Mescalito outsole


Since it is based on Vibram’s Megagrip compound, which is made of rubber, it provides enough slip resistance with every step—whether the surface is dry or wet.

Scarpa Mescalito outsole 1

Excellent surface traction 

Blocky protrusions (a.k.a lugs) are scattered all around it for a better hold of the ground, especially on slopes and loose soil. The front end of this sticky layer that is made extra smooth lets wearers latch on to boulders and similar features with added traction.

Scarpa Mescalito outsole 2

Comfortable cushioning

The Scarpa Mescalito’s heavy-duty midsole is made of EVA or ethylene-vinyl acetate. It has a partly soft, partly rigid construction (dual-density) that delivers a combination of cushioning and footing balance.

Scarpa Mescalito midsole

Provides stability over rough terrain

It comes with a stiff insert made of TPU or thermoplastic polyurethane for additional stability over rough terrain. Right atop it sits a cushy footbed for added underfoot comfort and support.

Scarpa Mescalito midsole 1

Comfy in-shoe feel

This Scarpa approach shoe envelops the foot in its 1.8-mm thick water-resistant suede leather upper. Its liner, which grants a comfy in-shoe feel, is made of recycled polyester. This liner works with the footgear’s stretch fabric tongue and collar that gives users an even more comfortable ride in the lead-up to their climbing destination. 

Scarpa Mescalito insole

Provides protection from destructive terrain hazards

It has a hard-wearing polyurethane rand around its base and a rubber cap reinforcing its front end for 360-degree protection from destructive terrain hazards. 

Scarpa Mescalito upper

Easy to wear

Making on and off as easy as possible, Scarpa designers attached a pull loop to the shoe’s heel. The Mescalito’s to-toe lace-up closure features round lace holes, most of which are non-plated. Configured through these eyelets by default is a synthetic lace.

Scarpa Mescalito heel loop

Scarpa Mescalito vs. Zodiac

The Mescalito is one of Scarpa’s high-quality shoes built for the approach. That being said, so is the Zodiac. Choosing which one to get between the two requires knowledge of the aspects that set them apart. The following list will detail the things that differentiate the two.

Price tag. The Scarpa Zodiac takes the cake in this round. Yes, the competing approach shoe is cheaper than the Mescalito by approximately $45.

Weight. Consumers who are quite particular with freedom of movement on the trail might side with the Scarpa Mescalito in this category. Indeed, the featured shoe is lighter than the Zodiac by about 60 g.

Outsole technology. The Mescalito, as previously discussed, sports the Vibram Litebase outsole. Its rival, on the other hand, is armed with a grippy layer called Drumlin (also by Vibram). The one in the featured approach shoe provides traction without the unnecessary heaviness, while the one in the Zodiac puts more emphasis on downhill security with its aggressive heel brake.

Lining. While both Scarpa kicks in this head-to-head are lined on the inside for extra comfort, only the one in the Zodiac keeps the foot comfortably warm. Yes, the Zodiac is engineered with a breathable fabric courtesy of 37.5, which as the brand’s name suggests, keeps the temperature of the shoe’s interior at 37.5 degrees Celsius.

Facts / Specs

Weight: Men 14.6oz / Women 12.5oz
Features: Heel brake
Material: Leather
Waterproofing: Water resistant
Top: Low
BRAND Brand: Scarpa
Closure: Lace-to-toe

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Teddy Dondanville
Teddy Dondanville

Teddy is a professionally trained Apprentice Rock Guide with the American Mountain Guides Association and a Wilderness First Responder with the National Outdoor Leadership School. Besides guiding outdoor rock climbing, Teddy also has years of experience in route setting and coaching climbing indoors. Through his guiding, route setting, and coaching, Teddy has experimented with climbing shoes for over a decade.