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How To Store Climbing Shoes Between Climbs

Profile image Adam M.
May 28, 2023
Climbing Shoes 0 Questions Asked
Last Updated Sep 28
Master the art of storing climbing shoes between climbs! Discover expert tips for shoe care, storage, and gear maintenance in this informative guide.
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Have you ever wondered how to properly store your climbing shoes between climbs? In this article, we will explore the best practices for climbing shoe care and storage, ensuring that your shoes stay in optimal condition for your next climbing adventure.

To store climbing shoes between climbs, it is recommended to keep them in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. Avoid storing them in a closed bag or trunk as this can lead to odor buildup and moisture retention. Instead, leave them in a cool, dry place where they can air out and dry naturally. This will help prevent the growth of bacteria and fungi, which can cause unpleasant odors and deteriorate the shoe's materials.

Now that we've answered the main question about storing climbing shoes between climbs, let's delve deeper into the topic. In this article, we will discuss the importance of proper climbing shoe care and storage, explore different storage options, and provide you with valuable tips to maintain your climbing gear.

Article Contents

Why Proper Climbing Shoe Storage Matters

Taking care of your climbing shoes is crucial for their longevity and performance. By storing them correctly, you can extend their lifespan and maintain their fit and functionality. Here are a few reasons why proper climbing shoe storage matters:

1. Preserving Shoe Performance

Climbing shoes are designed to provide optimal grip and sensitivity. Storing them improperly, such as in a cramped space or under extreme conditions, can affect their overall performance. By storing your shoes correctly, you ensure that they retain their shape, rubber stickiness, and edging capabilities.

2. Preventing Odor and Bacterial Growth

After a climbing session, your shoes may accumulate moisture from sweat or damp climbing surfaces. Storing them in a closed environment can create a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi, leading to unpleasant odors and potential foot infections. Proper storage helps to minimize these risks and keep your shoes fresh and odor-free.

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Best Practices for Climbing Shoe Storage

Now that we understand the importance of proper climbing shoe storage, let's explore some best practices to keep your shoes in excellent condition between climbs:

1. Find a Well-Ventilated Space

Choose a well-ventilated area for storing your climbing shoes. This can be a dedicated shoe rack, an open shelf, or a shoe bag with breathable mesh panels. Avoid enclosed spaces that restrict air circulation, as they can promote moisture retention and odor buildup.

2. Keep Them Away from Sunlight and Extreme Temperatures

Direct sunlight and extreme temperatures can degrade the materials of your climbing shoes, affecting their performance and durability. Store them in a cool, dry place, away from windows or heating sources. Avoid leaving them in a hot car or exposed to freezing temperatures.

3. Allow Shoes to Air Out and Dry Naturally

After each climb, remove your shoes from any bags or containers and let them air out naturally. This allows moisture to evaporate, preventing the growth of bacteria and fungi. Loosening the laces or straps can help improve airflow and speed up the drying process.

4. Clean and Brush Shoes Regularly

Regular cleaning and brushing can help remove dirt, dust, and debris from your climbing shoes. Use a soft brush or cloth to wipe away any grime on the uppers and soles. This not only keeps your shoes looking good but also helps maintain their performance by preventing the accumulation of dirt that could affect the shoe's grip on the rock.

5. Avoid Excessive Force or Compression

When storing your climbing shoes, avoid placing heavy objects on top of them or squeezing them into tight spaces. Excessive force or compression can distort the shape of the shoes and impact their fit and performance. Allow them to retain their natural shape to ensure a comfortable and precise fit when you wear them again.

6. Consider a Shoe Deodorizer

If you're concerned about odor buildup in your climbing shoes, you can use a shoe deodorizer or absorbent product. There are various options available, including charcoal inserts or specialized sprays designed to eliminate odors. Follow the instructions provided with the product to effectively freshen up your shoes.

7. Store Climbing Shoes Separately

To prevent any damage or contamination, it's advisable to store your climbing shoes separately from other climbing gear or shoes. Keep them in a designated space or compartment to avoid contact with sharp objects or chemicals that could compromise the integrity of the shoe's materials.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I store my climbing shoes in a closed bag or container?

It's generally not recommended to store climbing shoes in a closed bag or container. Closed environments restrict airflow and can lead to moisture retention, resulting in odor buildup and potential fungal growth. Instead, choose a well-ventilated area that allows your shoes to air out naturally.

Can I store my climbing shoes in the trunk of my car?

Storing climbing shoes in the trunk of your car is not ideal, especially during hot or cold weather conditions. Extreme temperatures can damage the materials of your shoes and affect their performance. It's best to find a cool, dry place indoors for storing your climbing shoes.

How often should I clean my climbing shoes?

The frequency of cleaning your climbing shoes depends on how often you use them and the conditions you climb in. As a general guideline, it's good practice to clean them after every few climbing sessions or whenever they become visibly dirty. Regular cleaning helps maintain their performance and prolong their lifespan.

Can I use a shoe deodorizer for my climbing shoes?

Yes, using a shoe deodorizer specifically designed for climbing shoes can help eliminate odor-causing bacteria. Look for products that are safe for use on climbing shoes and follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

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How to Care for Your Climbing Shoes and Extend Their Lives


In conclusion, proper storage and care are essential for maintaining the performance and longevity of your climbing shoes. By following the best practices outlined in this article, you can ensure that your shoes remain in optimal condition between climbs. Remember to find a well-ventilated space, keep them away from sunlight and extreme temperatures, allow them to air out and dry naturally, and clean them regularly.

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