Danish company ECCO is one of the only major shoe manufacturers to own and manage every step in their shoemaking process. The resulting quality and craftsmanship shines through in the ECCO Sayan II Lo GTX leather hiking shoes I was sent to put to the test on a variety of terrains and in all types of weather.
The ECCO Sayan II Lo GTX upper is made from super soft yet durable Yak leather, which is supposedly three times stronger than cow leather. A GORE-TEX waterproof breathable lining means you can wear these hiking shoes on those rainy, muddy trails without having to worry about your feet getting wet. The ghillie lacing system and double gusseted tongue offer a secure fit and help keep debris out of your hiking shoes.
The rugged, ECCO Performance Rubber outsole has a specially developed tread pattern that offers multi-directional traction and grip on a variety of terrain. The rubber outsole even passed the climbing approach test with flying colors. I would normally wear my Five Ten shoes with sticky rubber for any approach but the ECCO hiking shoes performed well even on the steep boulders of Red Rock Canyon. The outsole is supposedly also self cleaning, but I have tons of dried mud still stuck in the bottom of mine.
The ECCO Sayan II Lo GTX are on the heavier side and can feel a bit stiff. This construction may offer the support needed for longer backpacking trips with heavy packs but might be tiresome for simple day hikes. A removable cambrelle felt insole helps with cushioning and shock absorption, while the padded tongue and ankle area offer some extra comfort.
Bottom Line: If you are looking for durable, waterproof hiking shoes that can see you through mile after mile of trail in any weather and over any terrain, the ECCO Sayan II Lo GTX are a great choice.
The ECCO Sayan II Lo GTX hiking shoes come in both a men's and women's version and retail for $200.