A high-quality sport climbing and bouldering shoe at a reasonable price
The Butora Acro is a highly asymmetrical, aggressive shoe that excels on steep sport routes and boulder problems indoors and out. This well-built climbing shoe provides powerful edging without sacrificing the flexibility required for technical moves and smears.
With a nice balance between stiffness and sensitivity, the Butora Acro offers superior toe and heel hooking, impressive edging, and solid smearing. The Acro has a lightweight feel and is very comfortable for an aggressive shoe.
Founded in 2014, Butora is newer to the climbing shoe scene but has managed to compete with some of climbing’s household names, like La Sportiva, Scarpa, and Five Ten. The South Korean company launched the Acro in 2015. Since then, the shoe has earned a place among the best climbing shoes for steep sport routes and bouldering.
At $160, the Butora Acro is more affordable than many other climbing shoes designed for steep terrain. If you’re looking for a high-performance shoe at a more reasonable price, the Butora Acro is an excellent option that will support you on your most demanding projects.
The Butora Acros include a variety of innovative features that allow them to compete with some of the best aggressive climbing shoes on the market.
With 4mm of Butora’s NeoFriction Fuse rubber, the Acro’s sole is very sticky and durable. The high-tension heel rand drives power through the big toe, allowing you to feel secure on even the tiniest of edges.
This aggressive, downturned shoe features an extra downturn at the toe to increase pulling ability, making the Acro one of the top-performing shoes on steep terrain. The shoes also include a stiff, ABS-injected midsole for edging support but remain sensitive enough for challenging smears on slick granite.
With a rubber toe patch larger than that found on most bouldering shoes, the Acro is one of the best options available when it comes to toe hooking. The toe patch comes with pinholes for increased ventilation; despite this feature, the Butora Acro is not as breathable as models with less rubber on the toe.
The Acro features high-quality construction and materials, as well as a sleek design. The shoes have a soft, split-grain leather upper, synthetic microfiber lining, and polyurethane strip at the top of the toe box.
This construction provides a comfortable fit while limiting stretch in unwanted areas. The leather upper also helps combat odors better than a fully synthetic shoe.
The Acro includes Butora’s signature triple fork velcro closure system, which offers an adjustable fit and makes it fast and simple to take these shoes on and off.
While the Acros are too aggressive for slabs and many vertical walls, they perform amazingly well on steep terrain. Below, we’ll break down their performance according to edging, pockets, smearing, precision, toe hooking, and heel hooking.
Edging is where the Acro truly shines. The shoe’s high-tension heel rand consolidates power over the big toe for excellent support on even the smallest edges. As a result, the shoes’ solid edging platform results in a similar performance to other high-end, aggressive shoes such as the La Sportiva Solution or Scarpa Chimera.
The toe box on the Acro is wider and less pointed than on models like the La Sportiva Solution and Tenaya Mastia, making it harder to squeeze these into tiny pockets. Even so, the Acro is a great choice if you’ll be climbing on pocketed limestone and performs incredibly well on all but the smallest of pockets.
Although some climbers say the Butora Acro is stiffer than they’d like, the shoe has sufficient flexibility and sensitivity for smears and technical moves on steep sport climbs and boulder problems. However, if you plan to climb mostly slab to vertical routes and do a lot of smearing, there are better options available.
The Acro offers excellent precision on small holds thanks to the high-tension heel rand. Although it’s not the softest shoe out there, the Butora Acro is still sensitive enough to provide you with a decent idea of what’s happening beneath your feet and will allow you to climb confidently on diverse rock types.
Toe and Heel Hooking
Because of their large rubber toe patch and reinforced heel cup, the Acros provide some of the most secure toe and heel hooking available in a climbing shoe. The toe patch offers excellent grip and sensitivity, while the heel cup performs well, stays in place on technical heel hooks, and minimizes pain in the Achilles tendon.
Support and Durability
Thanks to the full-length midsole, the Acros will maintain their downturned shape throughout their lifetime and continue to concentrate power over the toe for added precision and support. The 4mm NeoFriction Fuse rubber sole boosts the shoe’s stiffness for additional edging support, which helps reduce fatigue in the foot and lower leg.
The Acro is well-made with high-quality materials and will stand up to heavy use. While the sole is highly durable, it can be replaced when it reaches the end of its life by getting your shoes resoled.
Comfort and Fit
While there are more comfortable shoes out there, the Butora Acro is incredibly comfortable for an aggressive, high-performance shoe and includes several features for enhanced comfort.
The shoes come with a padded synthetic tongue that provides extra cushioning and boosts flexibility, resulting in a slipper-like feel. Additionally, the forefoot is lined with open-cell foam, which helps prevent odors and increase breathability.
The Acro will still feel uncomfortable for most people on a multi-pitch route or after a full day at the crag. Therefore, these shoes are best for single-pitch routes and boulder problems where you can easily remove them and take breaks between sends.
Like all climbing shoes, the Acros will take some breaking in, but many climbers say they’re surprisingly comfortable right out of the box.
In terms of fit, the Acros have a large toe box and are one of the few climbing shoes available in a wide version, making them an excellent choice for those with wide feet. While the adjustable velcro closure offers a customizable fit, some people may have extra room in the heel cup, specifically toward the sides.
The Acro is available in narrow (blue) and wide (orange) versions and comes in sizes ranging from US 3 to US 13. The shoes are known for running small. Most climbers size the Acro about the same as their street shoe size, with those seeking an aggressive fit sizing down by a half size.
Lining: Partially lined with synthetic microfiber
Midsole: ABS-injected midsole
Sole: 4mm NeoFriction Fuse rubber
Weight: 8.8 oz / 250 g
This Climbing Shoe is Ideal For:
- Intermediate to advanced climbers
- Steep sport climbing and bouldering, gym climbing
- High-volume feet, wide feet
The Acro performs similarly to other high-end, downturned climbing shoes but comes at a lower price tag. From pocketed limestone to overhanging sandstone, the Acro excels on a variety of rock types and can compete with some of the best aggressive shoes on the market. Whether you’re pulling on real rock or plastic, the Acro will allow you to edge, smear, and toe hook with confidence.
- Neofuse rubber is sticky yet durable, making it a great choice on variety of surfaces
- Available in wide and narrow versions
- Excellent performance on a budget
- Not the most comfortable and not suitable for all day wear