The Chaco logo

Chaco was here 25 years of people & places

For a quarter-century, we’ve travelled down rivers, over mountains, around the world and back with you, making unforgettable history together. We want to thank you for choosing Chaco as your outdoor adventure partner and because you’ve been such an important part of our history, we invite you to add your own personal photo to our photo gallery. To do so, simply select a favourite photo and click “Upload now”. Thanks Chaconians. Here’s to 25 wild years!
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Born on
the River

Our founder, Mark Paigen, starts “Gecko” sandals out of his home in Paonia, CO. “The Ultimate Sport Sandal” focuses on maximum comfort and durability, with the concept that geckos have micro suction pads on their feet, allowing them to scale walls and ceilings.

A woman running barefoot on a beach Two men and a woman in a bicycle taxi A map book and a compass A woman swimming underwater A man climbing a rock face A man climbing between two rock walls A man holding a pair of sandals

1993

Gecko moves out of Mark’s home and into its first facility on Third Street.

A person jumping between two walls of rock A person’s foot wearing a sandal with a fly on it A Gecko sandal with purple webbing A person carrying a backpack and climbing a rock

“That’s Ze One!”

In order to find the perfect arch support, Mark works with Dr. Gerhard Rill, graduate of Munich School of Orthopedics, to test out multiple designs. Discovering the current footbed, Gerhard exclaims,“That’s ze one!” From there, the Z/1® is born.

A view of the sky looking up between some trees and mountains Two men sitting in rocks Two people walking down a street A bandana and a pocket knife A man sitting on a rock near a lake

Windowpane becomes the hottest selling pattern.

A man sitting in a pool of water A sample of the Windowpane webbing An orange carabiner Mountains in a desert A woman walking on some large rocks A person kayaking with mountains in the distance
The old Gecko logo and the Chaco Lizard logo

Our Name
is Chaco

When people begin confusing us with a new t-shirt company, Mark knows we need an identity all our own. A contest is held and receives hundreds of entries. We decide on Chaco!

A man and a woman jumping down a waterfall A close-up of a colorful lizard A woman sitting in a pool of water A person climbing a waterfall

1996

Women’s sizing is introduced.

A woman on the back of a bike hula-hooping A close-up of a Chaco sandal being worn

1997

Women’s specific fit is introduced.

“Hot Lava,” a strap pattern caused by a computer garble, becomes extremely popular.

A sample of the Hot Lava webbing

1998

Z/2® is introduced.

A woman doing yoga on top of a mountain A man playing a saxaphone outside of a building A close-up of a Chaco sandal

1999

The highly popular Chong sandal is introduced.

A person sitting in a pool of water under a waterfall A sample of the Hot Lava webbing

Repairs
Catch On

We had been seeing only five repairs a day. However, with the help of our dealers spreading the word, our numbers begin increasing.

A person repairing a Chaco sandal A man and woman dancing in bathing suits and Chaco sandals A beat up metal water bottle

2003

Chaco’s first line of boots is introduced.

A first person view of water from the top of a sail A person getting into a large body of water Shelves full of Chaco boots A person jumping into white water A red carabiner A man sitting in a cave

Chaco on
the Web

Staking our claim on the Internet, Chaco offers $5 coupons for website special orders.

A muddy Chaco boot A girl riding a longboard
The Chaco logo with no lizard

2006

Mark says goodbye to the lizard logo in an effort to accommodate an Italian-made boot collection and the Andale collection, made in Portugal.

Chaco’s first-ever Kids’ collection is introduced.

A little girl wearing Chacos A dog holding a Chaco sandal in its mouth

2008

Accessories and dog collars are introduced.

A boy skimboarding

2009

Chaco joins the portfolio of Wolverine Worldwide.

A book A lock

Welcome to the
Chaco-Sphere

The Chaco-Sphere, our online social media platform, is introduced.

A group of people paddling rafts in a river A man petting a dog

A man carrying a kayak A pile of webbing samples A woman smiling A kayaker standing up going through some rapids
The Chaco logo

2013

The Lizard logo is reintroduced.

25 Years and
Climbing!

Chaco celebrates 25 years of adventure.

A pair of feet wearing Chacos in water A pair of feet wearing Chacos on a cliff A person stand up paddle boarding and a sunset A person crossing a river A person carrying a kayak A person’s feet wearing Chacos and a dogs feet in the snow A circle of feet wearing Chacos A person’s feet with tan lines from their Chaco sandals A person’s feet jumping while wearing Chacos sandals A man doing a backflip into a pool of water Two people carrying kayaks

What's a Chaconian?

You are Chaco!

Chaconians are our pride and joy! They pound pavement, trails and waves. They teach, reach, and perform. They're people who trust their Chacos, and we're honored to support them.