Scarpa Zen

8.9
8.9 score
Runnerclick score (8.9)/10

Our overall Runnerclick score is based on 3 different factors: Editor's rating after in-depth testing. User ratings submitted on this page Overall score from the "reviewmeter" based on reviews across the web the weight of each factor is: 40% editor rating 15% user ratings 45% reviewmeter
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Editor rating: 8.8 / 10
User's rating: based on 0 user ratings
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Scarpa Zen Review Facts
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If you are looking for a great approach shoe that is going to keep your feet happy and comfortable and is super durable then you have come to the right place. The Scarpa Zen hiking shoes are able to handle a plethora of obstacles you may find in your way when you are out hitting the trails. Whether you are on a smooth path or rocky trail, with or without a pack, these shoes are the perfect fit for any hiker. Reviewers mentioned, however, that these shoes are not the best when it comes to balancing so that is something that you are going to want to keep in mind if you are planning on wearing these shoes to do any kind of climbing. Consumers love the comfort of the midsole and the excellent arch support they receive when wearing this product. Overall, though, these are an all-around great pair of approach shoes that customers love.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Great for hiking
  • Super durable
  • Excellent traction
  • Offers good support
  • Breathable
  • Flexible
  • Phenomenal arch support
Cons
  • Not great for climbing
  • High price tag
Outsole
Outsole

Outsole

The outsole of the Scarpa Zen is made out of Vibram Spyder which is a collaboration between Scarpa and Vibram. It is a rubber outsole but it has a differential design. There are suctions pads in the center of the sole that are hexagonal in shape to ensure you get the best traction possible. The shoes also feature a sculpted outline that will ensure you get a good grip.
Midsole
Midsole

Midsole

The midsole of the Scarpa Zen is made out of a double density thermoform EVA foam that is made to be comfortable and offer great stability for you while you are on the trails. Some customers claim that the midsole of these shoes feel rather thin and would have liked to see a little more padding here. On the other hand, this product does offer exceptional arch support that customers just love. The midsole also uses Activ Impact technology to give you exceptional shock absorption. This is going to take the impact of each step and help absorb some of it to take the pressure off of your joints and help to prevent injury and discomfort while you are out and about.
Upper
Upper

Upper

The upper of the Scarpa Zen is made out of leather for phenomenal durability and extra comfort. The upper provides you with the support that you need while you are on the trails, but at the same time, they keep your feet comfortable and allow for the flexibility you need to move your feet as naturally as possible.
Weight
Weight

Weight

When it comes to any kind of shoe you are going to want to wear something that is going to be relatively light, you do not want to be out hiking and start to feel like you are carrying additional weight on your feet. These approach shoes are going to weigh more than your typical running shoes or other shoes, they require more support and heavier materials to make sure they have what they need to keep you safe while you are hiking. That being said, the Scarpa Zen approach shoes weigh in at about 15 ounces which may seem a bit heavy but when compared to other approach shoes is actually fairly lightweight.
Breathability
Breathability

Breathability

Breathability is important when talking about shoes. You are going to want something that is going to allow a decent amount of ventilation to keep your feet cool and dry while you are out and about. You do not want to be stuck on a trail on a hot day and experience your feet overheating and feeling they are suffocating inside of your shoes. You will not have to worry about that with the Scarpa Zen approach shoes. Even though the uppers are made out of leather they have a surprisingly decent amount of airflow going into the foot chamber. Not only will this help keep your feet cool, but the ventilation will also help the sweat from your feet evaporate more quickly and escape your shoes keeping your feet dry and healthy.
Comfort
Comfort

Comfort

Customers can appreciate just how comfortable these shoes can be. The midsole, even though lacking some cushioning, is still relatively comfortable and provides excellent arch support. The leather upper aids in the comfort level of these approach shoes. You are going to want all the comfort you can get, especially if you are planning on taking a particularly long hike in the woods or up a mountain. No need to worry, the Scarpa Zen approach shoes have you covered.
Style
Style

Style

The Scarpa Zen approach shoes have a very basic design that customers do not seem to mind. There is only one color to choose from if you are purchasing these: smoke/fog. Some customers commented that they would have liked to have seen a couple more options to choose from. This product is going more for functionality than style and customers do not seem to mind the design too much and focus more on what they can do for them.
Durability
Durability

Durability

One of the best features about these shoes, according to many reviewers, is the fact that they are so durable. The Scarpa Zen approach shoes are really made to handle just about any terrain without the fear of premature wear and tear. The outsoles are made with an amazing rubber and design that makes them very durable; they can withstand miles upon miles of repeated pounding into even the roughest of terrains. The upper is also made to last, the leather will withstand a lot of abuse and not fall apart on you any time soon.
Protection
Protection

Protection

There are many features included in the Scarpa Zen approach shoes to make sure you are protected when you are out hiking. The design on the bottoms of these shoes can hold quite the grip and they have amazing traction, keeping you from slipping and falling. The outsole is also designed to protect your feet from hazards you may encounter along the way, such as jagged rocks, tree branches, and other such debris. You get a little added protection in the toe area of this product as well, helping keep your toes safe if you happen to accidentally kick a rock or root along the way. These approach shoes do their best to help protect you against any kind of injury or discomfort.
Responsiveness
Responsiveness

Responsiveness

There is not a whole lot of cushioning in the midsoles of the Scarpa Zen approach shoes and as such, they will not offer a whole lot of energy return. It is not uncommon for approach shoes to not offer much when it comes to responsiveness as you are generally not wearing them when you are running for speed. Customers do not seem to mind the fact that they do not get that same springy feeling as they would if they were wearing a pair of running shoes.
Support
Support

Support

They Scarpa Zen approach shoes offer you some decent support when you are out on the trails. You will get adequate support, even if you are out there carrying a rather heavy pack. The arch support, according to many customers, is also phenomenal so you get some additional support there.
Terrain
Terrain

Terrain

There are a plethora of terrains that you can safely run in while you are wearing the Scarpa Zen approach shoes. From flat roads to the rolling, wooded paths these shoes will help keep you safe and comfortable. This product is designed for those who like to do a lot of hiking and as such, they will make sure that they can keep up with you while you are out there. Something to note, however, is that some customers said that these shoes are not ideal if you are doing any kind of climbing, as it was difficult to balance in them. If you are simply hiking trails, no matter where they are, you are going to love the Scarpa Zen approach shoes.
Price
Price

Price

When it comes to purchasing your hiking shoes it is important to note that you are going to be making an investment. As an investment, you can expect to pay a decent amount of money up front and as long as you get a good quality product you will not have to spend that hard earned money again for a good long time. That being said, the Scarpa Zen approach shoes are an excellent investment. The price tag may be slightly higher than one would like to see, but they really are meant to last and it will be a very long time before you will have to spend the money again to replace them. The MSRP, manufacturer's suggested retail price, of these shoes rings up at $155 but as with many things on the market today, you can generally find them on sale on the internet somewhere. The customers who have purchased these shoes love them and even though their price tag is high they have stated that they were happy with their purchase and would gladly do it again.
Traction
Traction

Traction

The Scarpa Zen approach shoes can boast fantastic traction. The design of the Vibram Spyder outsole gives you exceptional grip. The hexagonal design of the suction pads that are in the center of the soles help your traction while the sculpted outline should help you get a grip and keep hold. You will not have to worry about your feet slipping out from underneath you while you are running or hiking. Whether wet or dry, going uphill or down, you can rest easy and rely on the traction of these shoes.
Flexibility
Flexibility

Flexibility

The Scarpa Zen approach shoes offer you some flexibility which is important in any pair of shoes. You need the freedom to move your feet around as naturally as possible and not restrict your movement, while still giving you the support you need to keep you safe on your feet. These shoes offer the perfect balance between flexibility and support that customers love.
Stability
Stability

Stability

These approach shoes are not considered to be stability shoes. If you are one of the thousands of people around the world that have problems with supination or overpronation then you should consider a different pair of shoes as these will not give you the support that you need. However, if you have a more neutral gait then the Scarpa Zen approach shoes are going to be perfect for you.
Drop
Drop

Drop

The drop of a shoe is simply the measurement of the incline from heel to toe. In other words, it is the difference in how high your toes and your heel are from the ground. Unfortunately, there is a dearth of information when it comes to the actual drop of the Scarpa Zen approach shoes.
Key Features
Key Features

Key Features

-Leather upper
-Amazing durability
-The midsole is made out of injected EVA foam
-Excellent arch support
-Vibram Spyder outsole for phenomenal traction
-Perfect for trail runners
-Activ Impact technology for shock absorption
Bottom Line
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

If you are looking for an all-around great pair of approach shoes that you can wear hiking or trail running then you have come to the right place, the Scarpa Zen approach shoes have you covered. They will give you the support and protection that you need to maneuver a plethora of terrains. They offer great breathability which is ideal to help keep your feet cool, even on the hottest of days. Some customers mentioned the midsole was a little bit thinner than they would like and could use some more cushioning but most reviewers still mentioned that they were comfortable. These shoes do, however, offer some great arch support which customers love and appreciate. One of the best features about this product seems to be just how durable they are, they are really built to last. They may have a relatively high price tag, but the durability makes them worth the money. The Scarpa Zen approach shoes really are a great pair of hiking shoes that customers like.