Ecco’s Exostrike boots are made with the world’s strongest leather

ecco exostrike boots worlds strongest leather ecco1

Dyneema has become all the rage in the outdoor industry and we’re seeing it emerge everywhere — in backpacks, tents, climbing equipment, and recently a technical ultralight jacket. The development of Dyneema Bonded Leather was the next step forward, created as a collaboration between Netherlands-based company Ecco Leather and DSM Dyneema. Ecco has implemented the material into its Exostrike boots, to be released in limited quantities at select retailers in April. This one-of-a-kind boot combines urban style with backcountry functionality — to serve as the only boot you’ll ever need to wear whether you’re traipsing down the streets or hiking mountain trails.

The Ecco Exostrike is crafted with paper-thin, Dyneema-infused leather that is 15 times stronger than steel, yet light enough to float on water.

“The first challenge was to develop a way of effectively bonding Dyneema composite fabric along the full surface of thinly skived high-grade bovine hide. The bonding process needed to maintain enough adhesion-integrity to withstand a battalion of secondary and final tanning processes. Achieving this bond, Ecco Leather was then able to refine the material by deploying milling, tumbling, toggling and finishing stages designed to bring out the leather’s natural qualities,” designer Sruli Recht told Digital Trends.

Ecco claims the bonded leather upper is five times stronger than any other leather on the market — which is easy to believe when you’ve brought Dyneema into the equation. Although the Dyneema keeps the boot lightweight, the company integrated a layer of Phorene (a patented polyurethane) into the midsole, which adds some weight to the shoe, but also makes for trail-worthy durability and support. The boots feature a wrap-around heel guard made from the same stuff, which serves to provide for protective support and a snug fit — but adds back the weight the Dyneema had subtracted. The end result? A rugged, comfortable hiker with an upper that you won’t have to worry about wearing or tearing.

While the boot is all street-style on top, Ecco integrated a rugged rubber outsole that provides for grip on uneven terrain — which makes for a hiker-style bottom. The boots weigh in at 1 pound, 8.5 ounces per boot according to GearJunkie, and while not waterproof, offer some water resistance. Whether or not you’re convinced they’re going to be the next new trend, the judges at ISPO gave the Exostrike a Gold Award in recognition of the Phorene midsoles and Dyneema bonded leather.

The Ecco Exostrike will be available in limited quantities at select retailers next month.

Wearables

Spring is here, and Apple’s beautiful new Watch bands will help you celebrate

Apple knows that seasons matter in the fashion world, and has refreshed its most popular Apple Watch bands to celebrate the arrival of spring. See them all, including our new favorite teal versions, here.
Mobile

Apple iPad Mini 5 vs. iPad Mini 4: What’s new in Apple’s long-awaited refresh?

The long-awaited refresh of the iPad Mini is finally here, but just how big an upgrade does the iPad Mini 5 represent? We compare it to the outgoing iPad Mini 4 in various categories to delve into the differences and pick a winner.
Movies & TV

Bear Grylls goes interactive with Netflix’s Bandersnatch-esque You vs. Wild

Think you have what it takes to survive in the wilderness, Bear Grylls-style? You vs. Wild, an eight-episode interactive Netflix series that takes cues from Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, will let you prove it.
Outdoors

Yamaha’s Wabash ebike takes on gravel, single track, and more

The Wabash gravel ebike from Yamaha gives riders a versatile and powerful option for riding trails, pavement, mud, sand, dirt, and more, with plenty of range and power for all-day adventures.
Outdoors

This ebike is so good it won a prestigious design award

The Gazelle Arroyo C8 Elite ebike picked up a prestigious IF Design Award, scoring high marks for its comfort and balance, while also looking good and offering excellent range at an affordable pice.
Home Theater

Get loud with the best outdoor speakers to rock your party in any weather

From rugged, solar-powered backwoods listening companions to floating pool party jam boxes, the best outdoor speakers partner with your lifestyle to let you listen to your favorite tunes wherever you go.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Mobile

App schools fishing fans on the best time and place to hook that dream catch

Fishbrain, a fishing social network and forecasting app, has introduced BiteTime, a new feature that takes the guesswork out of when and where you are most likely to catch a certain species of fish.
Outdoors

Hyperlite’s new 2-person tent weighs slightly more than two bags of marshmallows

Hyperlite Mountain Gear took the wraps off its new ultralight Dirigo 2 tent. Weighing only 28 ounces, the Dirigo 2 is the company's first self-contained, three-season, two-person shelter.
Deals

REI cuts prices on Osprey, Patagonia, and The North Face backpacks

Whether you're hiking, camping, or traveling, you're always going to need a decent bag to carry your things in. And with REI's Outlet sale going on right now, it's is a perfect time to pick one up for cheap.
Deals

The best budget-friendly GoPro alternatives that won’t leave you broke

Cold weather is here, and a good action camera is the perfect way to record all your adventures. You don't need to shell out the big bucks for a GoPro: Check out these great GoPro alternatives, including some 4K cameras, that won’t leave…
Health & Fitness

Under Armour HOVR is more than a running shoe, it’s a fitness tracker

Under Armour HOVR running shoes bring more to the table than just a comfortable fit. With UA's Record Sensor technology, you can track distance, duration, and even the path you take as you run.
Outdoors

Trek’s new bike helmet is 48 times safer than the one you’re wearing

Trek and Bontrager have taken the wraps off of a new cycling helmet that uses WaveCel technology to dramatically reduce head injuries by dispersing the impact in a way that is 48 times safer than current helmets.
Deals

Under Armour cuts prices on waterproof backpacks with this outlet sale

Under Armour built its name on athletic clothing, but this maker also offers great bags and backpacks for everyday use. If you're looking for a waterproof backpack to keep your stuff out of the rain, Under Armour’s ongoing sale might have…