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Scarpa - Instinct VS Climbing Shoe - Vibram XS Edge

Scarpa Instinct VS Climbing Shoe - Vibram XS Edge

35% Off
$120.22 Original price:$184.95
Changing the size selection, or changing the selected color after selecting a size, may change the associated price

Item #SCR0260




California Proposition 65


Cancer and Reproductive Harm -

Tech Specs

Upper Material:
Flexan (1mm)
Vibram XS Edge (3.5mm) [heel] Vibram XS Grip 2 (2mm)
Asymmetrical Curvature:
Claimed Weight:
Recommended Use:
bouldering, sport climbing
Manufacturer Warranty:
1 year

Why We Like The Instinct VS Climbing Shoe

When the angle kicks back and the moves get hard, we trust the Scarpa Instinct VS Climbing Shoe to see us through to the chains. The aggressive downturn and sensitive midsole allow us to toe-in on edges and solution pockets, while the innovative Bi-Tension system provides maximum power in the big toe without excess pain.

Scarpa built the sole with Vibram's XS Edge at the toe for better precision, and a softer XS Grip 2 at the heel for a secure fit. The microsuede upper has rubber encased over the foot to reduce stretch and increase toe-hooking performance. Plus, the single hook-and-loop strap makes putting them on and taking them off a breeze.

  • Climbing shoe with power and precision for demanding climbs
  • Aggressive downturn designed for steep to overhung rock
  • Vibram XS Edge rubber sole is built to last
  • Low-stretch microsuede upper with single strap adds comfort


  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
  • Fit: Runs large
  • Size Bought: EU 42

Street shoe Men’s 11.5 (12 for most Nike)
Evolv Shaman 11
Evolv Addict 10.5
Five Ten Team 11.5
La Sportiva Solution EU42

Instinct VS EU42
Highly advise going down 2-2.5 EU sizes from your street shoe to remove all dead space. They’ll mold to your foot and stretch around .25 of a size after about 2 weeks and be perfecto!

Fits like a 2nd skin. No dead space, very tight aggressive fit. I weight about 190 lbs and have no problem using these on anything. Sensitive, precise, and moderately stiff. Toe is kinda whatever, but it does the job.

Actually prefer these outdoors over indoors.

Great all around shoes for wider feet.

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These shoes are fantastic. I'm on my 3rd pair (rotating them as they are resoled) of the VS's. These shoes fit my semi-wide feet really well. I've used them at the gym and on sandstone, granite, and lime stone. Out of the box, they are pretty stiff and a bit uncomfortable, but after the break in period they soften up a bit and in my case only seemed to stretch 1/4 a size. Although not recommended, I can spend my whole gym session in these without taking them off.

The shoes come with Vibram XS Edge which is a little on the hard side. If you are above 155lbs (70kg) the rubber will feel a bit more grippy but if you are lighter it might feel a bit slick (especially on smears and volumes.) The shoes edge well and are able to hold shape when using small edges.

If you like the fit but want stickier rubber, I'd suggest getting the VSR which is the same shoe but with Vibram XS Grip 2. I have this Instinct VSR and I love it. The VSR will not be able to edge as well, but the rubber feels much stickier.

The heel on the VS(R)'s stands out for me. I am able to heel hook aggressively and feel when my heel is on. I use heel hooks a lot and these shoes are one of the few that is more of a "set it and forget it" type. Over time, I've developed a slight gap in the heel space, but its still better than in my other shoes.

Toe hooks are great in these. The patch of toe rubber lets you get a good feel on toe hooks and trust that it's going to stay.

Side note: if the instinct vs's are too wide try the women's instinct vs!

Instincts VS - Great off the get go!

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I don't write a lot of reviews but i feel I need to in this case. My previous bouldering shoe was Scarpa Vapor Vs. I love that they were comfortable and were decent rubber but now that I'm climbing V6+ routes I needed a more aggressive shoe. So I ordered 3 pairs of the Instincts VS to ensure I got the right sizing. Normally I wear a size 9 or 42 EU street shoe. So I ordered 42, 41.5 and 41 sizes. From my research most people downsize a little with these Scarpas. (Definitely not as much as LaSportiva brands. Also I have a slightly wider than average foot width D so LaSportiva solutions were a bit tight. I read that these Instincts are better for wider feet and that they are! I tried on all 3 sizes at home and walked around in them and stood on my stair edges to "break" them in a bit. In the end I kept the 41.5 size (1/2 size down from my Street shoe size) and returned the others.

I took my new Scarpas to the Boulder gym and I was pleasantly surprised at how well they performed on the first day. The heel hooks and toe hooks were amazing. Certainly better than my Vapor Vs. The shoe had a great fit, certainly snug, but not painful. I was able to send a V6 project that i have been flailing on for 3 weeks and the Instincts rubber definitely helped. I am looking forward to climbing more in these. Best shoes I have owned to date.

Amazing All-Rounder

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This shoe can pretty much do it all. I used this shoe on every type of terrain and it always lived up to it’s expected performance! It edges well, smears well, the heal is super solid and grippy, and everything else was just as good! This shoe also has incredible durability. I used it almost exclusively for a year till it really started to fall apart.

There was one weird issue I had though. When pressing down really hard on a small foothold, specifically in overhanging climbs, it seemed like the toe box would fold an pinch my toe. This hurt A LOT and was kinda disappointing. Did anyone else experience this problem? I think it was likely due to downsizing too much.

The Next level

    Ive been climbing since December and ran the black diamond momentum lace ups (which are a fantastic introduction shoe), however they were heavily used and weren't holding up so I looked for another pair. I wanted something that would be comfortable all day, yet have a moderate downturn and allow the rubber to stick. These hit it spot on, they use Vibram XS rubber like current La sportiva models, they have a moderate downturn so edging on this is an absolute monster (awesome) and I can wear them for 3 hours with only moderate discomfort in the arch. Sizing. I bounce between 10.5-11.0 street shoe (vans) I got the momentum lace ups in 45 and they were just a tad big, I got these in a 44 and they are perfect, a few blisters on the top of the toe but I can stand on hair-width thin edges. These are a fantastic shoe.

    You need these.

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I wear a size 9 in vans street shoes, the 42.5s in these fit perfect. The reason i'm so pumped on these shoes is because my left foot is almost half a size smaller than my right, but the way these fit/stretch, it's equally comfortable on each foot with just the one size. I'm impressed with how they handle, and the toe box isn't so narrow that your toes are being crammed as if you're stuffing your hand into gloves that are too small. A new favorite for sure.

    I have the same problem of my left foot being smaller than my right by almost a complete size; and having to buy two pairs of the same La Sportiva shoes: Otaki, Solution and Skwama. An expensive problem! Maybe going to try these when Backcountry finally gets an inventory replenishment.

    A better Solution

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    I was a fan of the solutions forever and got these as everyone said they were just an improved Solution, and they were right. The heel is still solid and stiff, but the outside is slightly narrower so it fits more heel hook positions/ holds. The toe is more stiff as the rubber is not extended so far away from the toe like the solutions which makes for more power and a better/ more accurate feel on foot holds. The only downside is that if you climb outside a lot, they do not hold up like solutions do to outside climbing. The toe patch and other materials can start to peel a little bit.

    Great Fit

      I got a size 44 and the fit is perfect, very comfortable shoe. I must say however that I'm not a fan of the vibram rubber on this shoe. At local climbing gym, some of the foot holds that my nexxo shoes were solid on, the scarpa slipped off and now have I little confidence on small foot jibs. Apart from that, a very nice shoe

      Best seller for a reason

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      This is Scarpa's best selling climbing shoe and it's obvious why. It is the most versatile shoe that I have found. Fairly aggressive and down turned while still being a comfortable shoe. All the rubber on the top of the shoe and Vibram XS Grip 2 on the heel makes in great from toe and heel hooks, and the Vibram XS Edge on the toe gives you confidence on the smallest holds. Also the lack of exposed leather helps this shoe stay true to size and last forever! 5 star shoe!

      New Favorites!

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      I was on the search for some new climbing shoes and was looking for a little more aggressive shoe. I had quite a few others in mind, but the moment I put these on my feet, I knew. They were a bit tough to get on at first, but as soon as my foot was in them, it was heaven (with a little pain). Seriously, these shoes fit my feet absolutely perfectly. And the trend of the perfect fit continued when I started climbing in them, they make any size edge feel great. The rubber is amazing and grips to everything, far, both in the gym and outside. You get the perfect amount of feeling through the rubber so you can really effectively use what little edges you get. I highly recommend these shoes to anyone looking for a more aggressive shoe for any type of climbing.

      Great performance, short lifespan

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      I've been using these Scarpas for about 10 months (mostly indoors) , and the rubber is starting to go on both toes and the heels. Granted, they are TERRIFIC for overhanging stuff, and toe/heel hooks. Most importantly, the security I felt in these shoes gave me the confidence to start climbing in the v6-8 range. Unfortunately, they weren't as comfortable climbing slab (due to the aggressive downturn) and they were sort of hit or miss on real rock.

      TL;DR - really secure shoe, but the rubber goes quick and isn't made for slab.

      I've had these for over a year

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      I've worn these about three times a week for over a year. Mostly just indoor bouldering, but a decent amount of outdoor bouldering, and indoor rope. I'm pretty tough on the things I own and these shoes are no exception. They've held up without any failings as far as I can tell. Anytime my climbing is less than stellar I can blame greasy holds, high humidity, other people, bad genetics, irrational despondency, the unyielding grind, but so far never my shoes. Virtually zero maintenance, the sticky sole has held up very well despite jamming it into or onto abrasive or jagged surfaces, but I do add a generous splash of deodorizer after every session. Honestly my favorite shoes I have owned. So far.


      • Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

      Runs one size small. Just wanted to help better size em. I wear about a 10.5 street shoe, Ive climbed in La Sportiva Nagos size 43 for a long time, as a wear-all-day comfort shoe and i got these in 43.5, could have been doable for short times but would quickly be too uncomfortable, so im exchanging for 44 to prolong my sessions in these shoes. Hope that helps with sizing. No comment on performance, havent climbed in them yet.

      Take them anywhere!

        I bought these for my brother he says he has a somewhat more narrower foot, which he says feels great in the VS. As with most climbing shoes there is a break in period. With his first pair of VS he had to take them off after every climb. After a couple of weeks (climbing 3 days on average) his feet finally adjusted. This being his second pair of the VS he said he had no break in period this time and wonders if maybe a size down would have been better. VS gives complete confidence on tiny feet, whether indoors or on actual rock; from granite, limestone and sandstone, as well giving the confidence and security of throwing out a heel or toe hook, VS latches on great!

        The Bouldering King

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

        I tried on about 40 different aggressive shoes before choosing these. My pair are currently at the point of needing a resole. I've used them on every single different type of climb. What they are really good at is bouldering, indoor or outdoor. I feel like this rubber is perfect for outdoor, yet still very decent for indoor. I just ordered the lace up version as a replacement while mine are getting resoled. I imagine the lace up version will also be much better for sport multi-pitch climbs which is really my kind of party. I personally never had an issue with unusual separations or durability on this shoe. Every good climbing shoe has a purpose...

        What these shoes are perfect for:
        Bouldering sessions
        Edging very small holds
        The very best at toe hooks
        Heel hooks
        Heel/Toe cams

        Not so good at:
        Multi-pitch sport climbs
        Not stinking
        Breathing well

        Really not good for:
        Crack climbing
        Off widths
        Basically anything trad

        I wear a size 10 street shoe
        I wear a size 44 in this model and it fits Tight but not too small.

        It's a better Solution...

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

        After several failtures trying to find an aggressive shoe that fit my shallow heel, I finally tried out a pair of these and instantly fell in love. I am on my second pair and about to order a third for this upcoming season. I wear a size 9-9.5 street shoe, so I initially ordered a 42 for my first pair but they really open up after you break them in. I am in a size 41.5 now and they feel awesome.

        Form Fitting Power

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

        This is my fourth pair of the Instinct VS and they never fail to disappoint. The shoes start off really tight and painful, you need to take them off after a single sport climb or a couple boulder attempts. However, once they are worn in these shoes will fit you impeccably. I've never had anything close to the heel cup folding off or any movement of my foot within the shoe. One point to mention is these seem to be somewhat foot shape dependent, some of my more flat footed friends have not enjoyed the shoe as much as I have. The high arch of the shoe will work great if you already have a pronounced arch.
        These shoes are very durable, the toe rubber is pretty stiff and thick so they certainly last a while. Great rubber coverage over most of the shoe means any toe hook you want is a go. One thing to note is 5.10 shoes do not fit my foot well, so if you have had the same problem, these may be a good choice.
        Lastly, I'd say these are great for boulders and single pitch sport routes. I usually use my anazazi moccasyms for warmups/slab/trad.

        Scarpa Instinct VS

        • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
        • Fit: Runs small
        • Size Bought: 39

        I purchased this shoe primarily for bouldering and it has been a fantastic intermediate shoe.

        I started bouldering around a year ago and my first pair of shoes (Scarpa Origins) were fantastic but I noticed a lot of foot movement in them (my fault for comfort sizing them).

        I originally wanted to try La Sportiva, but none of their shoes fit me, so I decided to try the Instinct VS. Loved them right away, though the break-in period was a little painful (I sized down 1.5 sizes). With them I have been able to sent a couple of V5's (usually I'm a V4 climber)


        Footwear & Boots
          3 4 2 34.5 / 35
         21.5 3.5 4.5 2.5 35 / 35.5
         22 4 5 3 35.5 / 36 36 / 36.5
        23564 37 / 37.5
        23.5 5.5 6.5 4.5 37.5 / 38
        24 6 7 5 38 / 38.5 38.5 / 39
        25786 39.5 / 40
        25.5 7.5 8.5 6.5 40 / 40.5
        26 8 9 7 40.5 / 41 41 / 41.5
        279108 42 / 42.5
        27.5 9.5 10.5 8.5 42.5 / 43
        28 10 11 9 43 / 43.5
        28.510.511.59.5 43.5 / 44
        29111210 44.5 / 45
        29.5 11.5 12.5 10.5 45 / 45.5
        30 12 13 11 45.5 / 46
        30.512.513.511.5 46 / 46.5
        31131412 47 / 47.5
        31.5 13.5 14.5 12.5 47.5 / 48
        32 14 15 13 48 / 49
        32.514.515.513.5 49 / 50
        33151614 50
        *1 EU whole size = 6.6mm = 0.26in
        *1 US whole size = 8.4mm = 0.33in
        *the 30 EU sizes above cover the same size range as 24 US sizes
        more EU sizes provides a better, more precise fit for your intended use

        ROCK SHOES: downsize 1/2 to 2 full sizes from street shoe size
        *downsizing depends on model, intended use, and personal preference

        MOUNTAINEERING: upsize (1/2+ sizes) depending on desired fit
        *Scarpa plastic mountaineering boots are based on the UK sizing scale

        SKI BOOTS: all Scarpa ski boots are measured in Mondo sizing
        *highlighted (or not) sizes share the same shell size; the liners are lasted for each 1/2 size
        *some skiers may want to downsize up to 1 full Mondo size, depending upon personal preference
        Boot Sole Lengths
        Mondo Size22.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.030.5 / 31.0
        F1, F1 Race, F1 Carbon 268mm 276mm 285mm 292mm 301mm 310mm 318mm 326mm 334mm
        Mondo Size22.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.030.5 / 31.031.5 / 32.0
        Maestrale, Gea 271mm 280mm 288mm 297mm 306mm 314mm 322mm 331mm 340mm 348mm
        Mondo Size23.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.0
        Alien 262mm 271mm 279mm 287mm 296mm 305mm 313mm
        Mondo Size21.5 / 22.022.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.030.5 / 31.0
        Freedom 257mm 267mm 277mm 287mm 297mm 307mm 317mm 327mm 337mm 347mm
        Mondo Size22.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.030.5 / 31.0
        T1 283mm 292mm 300mm 309mm 318mm 327mm 335mm 343mm 351mm
        Mondo Size22.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.0
        TX Comp 275mm 283mm 291mm 299mm 307mm 316mm 325mm 333mm
        Mondo Size21.5 / 22.022.5 / 23.023.5 / 24.024.5 / 25.025.5 / 26.026.5 / 27.027.5 / 28.028.5 / 29.029.5 / 30.030.5 / 31.031.5 / 32.0
        T2 Eco, T4 277mm 284mm 291mm 299mm 307mm 315mm 324mm 332mm 341mm 350mm 358mm