ECCO Walking Boots Make The Grade
Is there an adventurer in you?! Read on to find out how we supported some local adventurers in the trek of a life time, why they chose ECCO Boots, and how we helped. Boys, you did stunningly!
Rob and Leon walked home- from Mongolia to Hong Kong:
When we were planning for this expedition, we knew that our choice of footwear was going to be key. Our plan was to walk 3000 miles from Mongolia to Hong Kong and without the correct boots, our dream could quite quickly turn into a nightmare.
We were delighted when we were introduced to Hilary from ECCO Oxford, as we really didn’t know where to begin with the process of choosing. After hearing our plan, she suggested that the ECCO Xpedition II boot would best suit us. And I can now say, after 7 months of rigorous testing, that she was absolutely right!
We started off in the Gobi Desert in Mongolia, which took 13 days to cross. After that we crossed the border into China, and continued through the Gobi until we reached a remote section of the Great Wall. We followed that over ridges and down valleys until it led us to the Yellow River. We reached its banks in deepest winter, and the river was almost completely frozen over, so we had to work our way along side it for a few weeks until finally we could cross. Our next major landmark was the ancient city of Xi’An, where finally spring began to appear. From there we were in the mountains for the long haul– down to the unique and bizarre landscape of Guilin and finally following the Pearl River into Hong Kong itself.
Rather obviously I suppose, the boots were really tested to the extreme. The Yak leather was essential in the winter when the temperature dropped to minus 30. It also made the boots exceedingly tough, so even days on end of scrambling over sharp rocks didn’t puncture them.
The design supports the ankle and the balance of the boot was such that neither Rob nor I seriously rolled an ankle the whole journey, which is quite amazing.
I went through two pairs of boots on the expedition and Rob three, so we can estimate that each set is very capable of dealing with 1000-1500 miles of trekking. I think the toughest section for wear and tear was probably just after the snow began to recede, and we were entering the mountains south of Xi’An. The ground was rough, and after dealing with snow, we suddenly had to switch to coping with rain and large areas of damp ground.
The closest we came to ever needing a repair was when a couple of the stiches on the outside of my boot got torn scrambling over a hillside. Luckily China is the place to be for impromptu fixes, and in the next town we found a man with a pedal operated sewing machine who took just a few seconds to put in a couple of new threads!
We’re now safely back home – I’m back in the U.K and Rob has been reunited with his wife in Hong Kong where they live. We were filming the expedition for a TV show which all being well will air before the end of the year. We were also trekking to help raise awareness and funds for the children’s charity Viva, who work with children at risk around the world. So far we have raised around £38k, which is great- but of course just because we’ve finished walking it doesn’t mean we’ve stopped taking donations! If anyone wants to continue supporting Viva, they can donate online here
We’ll be updating our website www.walkinghomefrommongolia.com with all the latest news about the TV show, our books and anything else related to the expedition, so keep an eye out for that.
We’d like to say a huge thanks to ECCO for the great boots, and especially the team at ECCO Oxford for being so supportive and making sure we got exactly what we needed to complete the expedition. Thanks, guys!