Like the best eco-friendly gear today, this shoe reduces its impact without sacrificing performance. One editor strapped crampons onto the FC ECO and climbed Switzerland’s 13,474-foot Mönch, pushing the boot to its limit. He called it a “superb light hiker that can easily handle a weekend load on trails and moderately rough terrain.” (The midsole flexes for easy striding, but lacks torsional rigidity for bigger loads and sidehilling.)
A Gore-Tex liner repelled wet brush in Idaho’s Sawtooth Mountains, yet the upper’s combination of perforated, eco-tanned leather and recycled-nylon mesh prevented overheating on desert hikes. Heel brakes delivered exceptional traction on greasy trails.