Has anyone else noticed the growing popularity of the sneakerboot these days? A paired down hiker with a bit of flair for the city. For the streets. Nike dropped a few that blew my mind — and matched a few socks nicely — but the New Balance 710 was a shoe that I have been after for a while. I could not resist the blue/orange color combo you see here. Of course they have added a couple smooth leather options to fully start the cravings all over again.
I first became aware of this shoe from our friends Ty and Andrea. We went hiking with Andrea a while back in the Columbia River Gorge and she had a grey pair from last season. Well, when we returned I couldn't scour the webs fast enough - or hard enough - because I couldn't find anything to fit the description. Low and behold, all I had to do was be patient, not my forte.
- big fan of the speckled outsole near the front of the shoe.
- the cordura keeps it light
- enameled eyelets just plain look good.
- stiff heel cup makes me think you could actually day hike in them
- pairs well with the Ekiden Marine Blue sock & the Strawfoot Arcade socks in blue
Right out the gate these were a a comfortable daily wear. But, be wary on the sizing. If you can't find somewhere to try them on, be prepared to send them back through their online return system. It works with relatively low stress, but it takes a while. If you're used to ordering from Nike or the Zappos, just know that these guys take their sweet time.
If you're ordering other New Balance shoes, just know that they may be all over the map in terms of sizing. I would generally consider myself a size 10 in most shoes. When I got the National Parks 1300 I went down a full size. With that in mind I ordered a Fresh Foam 980 Trail in the 9. Wrong again - they're way too small. And these at a 9.5 seem to have enough room to get a thicker hiking sock in there. Whatever the case may be, once you get your sizing down, you'll be stoked.
Running Shoe - 10. Lifestyle Shoe - 9. Hiker - 9.5.
I've slowly been drawn back into the fold with New Balance over the last year. Their Made in the USA program has been knocking it out of the park as well as their collaboration series with shops like Packer Shoes. Ugh, they almost tempted me into the Worthy's! And their customizer (everyone has to have one) gets you Made In the USA shoes in 6-8 days. Seriously. Nothing to complain about there.
All in all, I'm stoked about these. There are a few options in this category at the moment, but nothing that takes the classic feel and brightens it up with colors like these. That being said ACG is set to re-re-re launch next Friday, so we shall see what that adds to the category.