Recycled boots for eco-friendly travelers

June 22, 2023 0 Comments

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Your hiking boots are with you on any adventure, big or small. Whether you’re just exploring the city or venturing into the wild, every step adds to the story. As with everything, time takes its toll on your shoes. After countless kilometers, the sole starts to wear out and the leather needs some love. With the new Mountain 600 Leaf GTX from Danner, these signs of a worn boot are just the beginning of your next adventure. This new, forward-looking camper qualifies for Danner recycling services that can keep it on the trail for years to come. We spoke with Erin Weger, Danner’s Marketing Manager for Earned Media, to learn more about the Danner redesign and the Mountain 600 Leaf GTX.

Outside: What motivated Danner to start a recycling program?

Erin Weger: Danner has been reinventing its classic American-made boots for decades and was founded on the idea that products should last. In the 1930s, Charles Danner made boots for lumberjacks—one of the most dangerous jobs in the world at the time—in the Pacific Northwest. The conditions were harsh and difficult, and the workers needed the highest quality and most durable boots.

That commitment to quality has given way to the Danner Recycling Center in Portland, Oregon, which offers everything from sole replacement to full restoration. Recycling reduces the number of shoes in landfills and protects the ecosystems we explore. Danner is excited to extend the redesign to its modern tourers, including the new Mountain 600 Leaf GTX.

Danner Mountain 600 Leaf GTX Hiking Boots in Creek.
Keep your feet dry in the waterproof/breathable Danner Mountain 600 Leaf GTX. (Photo: Danner)

Who is the Mountain 600 for?

The Mountain 600 Leaf GTX is built for different terrains and conditions. From seasoned hikers to first-timers, these boots will appeal to everyone. It has a classic style with hints of the iconic Danner Mountain Light Cascade (depicted in the film Wild). The best part? They feel as good as they look.

I live outside of Glacier National Park and always keep these boots in my car. There’s a lot of route variation here, and I’ve used them on all kinds of routes, from grueling 5,000-foot climbs to easy three-mile loops to exploring scenic alpine lakes. If you’re looking for a reliable, year-round adventure buddy, this is the perfect shoe for you.

What sets the Mountain 600 apart from other hiking boots?

These boots are comfortable, absolutely reliable on the trails, look great, and now they’re also more environmentally friendly. From the first time you put them on, they’re ready to go with very little break-in time. And that’s pretty rare for a rugged hiking boot with all the bells and whistles. This shoe really improves performance. It features a supportive midsole, a grippy Vibram® outsole and a waterproof GORE-TEX lining made from 45 percent recycled materials. But what really sets these boots apart is that they can be redesigned with a new Vibram® sole and regenerated leather.

When is the time to send boots for recycling?

Everyone wears their shoes differently, so it really depends. If you like to hike off-road—looking at you, volcanic rock—that wears out your soles faster than the soft, loamy trails we have near our headquarters in the Pacific Northwest. It also depends on how often you ride the trails and how many miles you cover. It is important to keep your boots clean, dry and in good condition. With all that said, your boots are ready for a makeover when the sole protector starts to look worn or you start to feel too much trail through the boots.

How do you know if your shoes are recyclable?

The Danner team has achieved great results online tool to determine if your shoes can be recycled and which services they are eligible for.

What does the recycling process involve for shoe owners?

Portland has a full shoe recycling team that makes the process easy. Using an online tool, shoe owners find the right package for them and then send their shoes to our Recycling Center. Upon receipt, the team begins processing your shoes. All of our repairmen really know Danner boots inside and out, and one person handles your boots throughout the entire process. If we have any questions along the way, we’ll be in touch. Turnaround times vary, but it usually takes about a month from start to finish. When we’re done, your boots are ready for years of adventures to come.

Almost a century Forms designed shoes with purpose and integrity—shoes for those who take the unlikely path, those who blaze new trails, those who pioneer. In 1936, Charles Danner came out West to build the best lumberjack boot ever known, resulting in a long-standing heritage brand with a renegade spirit. A spirit that lives proudly in every pair of Danner boots she makes, and still does. Whether you want to go hiking, work or just walk around town, Danner boots will help you get there. Put on a pair and go there. visit for more information.

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