Who should buy the Scarpa Mago

It can be said that the benefits of the Scarpa Mago are enough to woo in even those who are still on the fence about it. It is a solid option if you:

  • Prefer a climbing shoe that offers support and stability during ascending.
  • Prefer a climbing shoe that is ground-adherent thanks to its Vibram rubber outsole.
  • Prefer a climbing shoe that is ideal for use on bouldering, sport and trad routes, and indoor climbing.

Scarpa Mago logo

Excellent grip and durability

The Vibram XS Grip 2 outsole makes the Scarpa Mago rock adherent. It is 3.5 mm thick, rendering a balance between grip and durability.

Scarpa Mago outsole

Provides extra adhesion when edging and smearing

The pronounced rubber that wraps the base of the upper yields extra adhesion when edging and smearing.

Scarpa Mago outsole 1

Excellent toe power support

This rock climbing shoe carries a TPS Insert midsole. TPS or Toe Power Support is a thermoshapable unit placed under the forefoot. Its customizable fit provides better performance when pushing and pulling and increases precision.

Scarpa Mago midsole

Excellent arch support

This offering also employs the X Tension system, an active randing that crosses under the arch. It helps lift the foot during motion and renders optimal support and stability. 

Scarpa Mago arch

Secure lockdown

Scarpa designers use 1.8 mm suede and microsuede (synthetic leather) in the Mago’s upper. It is constructed using an intricate stitch pattern providing seamless panels at the toes. This feature helps maintain form and comfort, especially when toe-hooking. 

Scarpa Mago upper

Secure fit

Dual tabs are attached at the back of the shoe to assist climbers in donning and doffing. Its closure system helps in managing the overall fit.

Scarpa Mago laces

Scarpa Mago vs Instinct

Both the Mago and Instinct are climbing pieces manufactured by Scarpa for male senders. Shown below are some of the differences between these two climb-centric offerings.

Downturn. The Scarpa Instinct is a moderately downturned shoe for climbers. This design allows individuals to climb multiple pitches with ample comfort and support. Optimum performance on the tiniest footholds, on the other hand, can be expected from the Mago’s aggressively-downturned shape.

Application. The Instinct is designed by Scarpa to be used for sport climbing and bouldering sessions. Its set of components and technologies also enables users to handle cracks and vertical faces set in the great outdoors. Moreover, this Scarpa climbing piece is crafted mainly for intermediate senders. Meanwhile, the indoor and outdoor Mago can handle trad, sport, and bouldering projects like a champ.

Upper. The Scarpa Instinct’s unlined upper is made of microsuede. It comes with a heavy-duty rand around the forefoot zone for extra grip for toe jamming and hooking. Its heel section features a Bi-Tension rand to hold the wearer’s rearfoot securely in place while delivering protection from abrasive elements. On the other hand, the hybrid Scarpa Mago, as stated above, is crafted with both leather and synthetic to offer comfort while maintaining its form.

Midsole. The Instinct from Scarpa is equipped with a 1mm-thick Flexan midsole. It has a stiff construction, granting climbers with ample support and underfoot protection. The Mago’s medium-stiff midsole information, meanwhile, offers both stability and precision.

Outsole. The Scarpa Instinct sports a 4mm-thick Vibram XS Edge outsole for surface traction. It covers the shoe’s heel and forefoot sections only, granting the arch zone added flexibility. The Mago uses a thinner Vibram XS Grip 2 outsole, which is explained further in the Performance section.

Nice to know

  • Individuals looking for a less aggressive rock climbing shoe best suited for beginners may check out La Sportiva’s Tarantulace.

Facts / Specs

Weight: Men 215g
Technology: Leather, Synthetic
Construction: Slip lasted, Lace-to-toe
Fit: Performance fit
Downturn: Aggressive
Environment: Indoor, Outdoor
Material: Leather, Synthetic, Vibram

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Scarpa Mago video reviews

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.