Ecco Track II
Use: 50 Hour Work Weeks
Break-in Period: Absolutely NONE. Comfortable out of the box!
Price Paid: $160
I am a Federal Express courier who works 50 hour weeks, gets in and out of my truck over 100+ times a day, walks over 5 miles daily and is exposed to all weather elements. I pound the pavement, concrete, wet grass, curbs, puddles, metal truck floors and STILL will get over 2 years of life from these remarkable Ecco Track II boots. Any courier from UPS, DHL, and USPS will understand…THAT is remarkable.
Most couriers buy a pair of $60 Nike, Reebok, Adidas, New Balance, etc and in just 6 months, they are SHOT! When a fellow courier at FedEx introduced me to the Ecco Track II and told me that it would cost $200, I thought he was out of his mind! However, I now swear by them and will never go back to sneakers or other boots again for work. I just bought my third pair and the secret to extending the life of the Track II is to take out the insole every night after work and place a cedar shoe tree in them to absorb all the moisture and keep the boot sturdy.
Three things stand out about the Ecco Track II boot: exceptionally durable, extremely comfortable and best of all, Gore-Tex! Never will you go around a puddle again! Trust a FedEx courier who abuses the daylights out of his boots: Plunk down the money for the Ecco Track II. . . and you will swear by them.
Use: Day hikes
Break-in Period: Zero
Price Paid: $200
Ecco's are considered by many to be the most comfortable shoes on the market. I would have to agree. Though their lack of any steel shank makes them unacceptable for moderate to light backpacking, their flexibility and lightweight rule for day hikes. The Track comes in a shoe, a mid-height boot, and a taller, heavily padded boot. They do have a Gore-Tex stormsock inside, so they're completely waterproof.
The most alluring characteristic is the sole and arch support. Instead of using an insole for arch support, Ecco molds the arch into the sole itself (which is injection-molded to the uppers) therefore, it doesn't break down over time like the vast majority of others will. The soles are constructed with two types of polyurethane: a firm type for support, and a softer surrounding type for comfort. Though softer than rubber, it doesn't wear as fast and, contrary to previous reviews, IS resoleable. The shoe needs to be sent to Ecco, for that though.
My personal experience with these has been great. I wear them constantly from sunrise to sunset and have nary a complaint to be found, though I really wish I didn't have to shell out my rent money for them. Especially considering that I don't wear anything else now.
Where to Buy
We found the Ecco Track II at 1 outdoor retailer: