This video is chock full of good info, especially for the beginner. If you have no idea where to begin in your search for hiking books, and you want to start hiking, watch this. Other things you should consider that he doesn't really go into: - solid full grain leather uppers (preferably nubuck) - the less stitches the better (more stitches = more failure points!) - high enough to support ankles - solid internal structure (so your arches don't sink) - able to replace soles (if you want it to last for a while) - insulated if in cold climate (but not too insulated) I hope this helps. I certainly learned a lot. Remember, if you don't choose the right boot, you're going to put your feet into danger and be in serious pain!