Bruce and I are heading to Outboard next month, and have finally taken the plunge and purchased our own boarding equipment. We’re happy to be totally intermediate, recreational riders. You’ll never see us doing 360s on a half-pipe. As snowboarding equipment gets more specialized by terrain and riding style, expert riders have very specific reasons for choosing equipment. But our decision was based on comfort and convenience. The Boa technology, a knob-tightened wire lacing system was the main decision feature for me While some riders (and equipment sales people) dis the inability to selectively tighten one portion of the laces, I was enthralled by the ability to lace up without sweating, and tighten my laces on a lift with my gloves on! Eight manufacturers are currently using the Boa system on snowboard boots. I settled on the DC Judge, which also features an inflatable air liner, a gel-cushioned toe and tongue, and a toe warmer-compatible insole. About.com named it the top choice boot for 2005. And I bought it at a closeout price from backcountry.com, which has great prices, great service, free shipping, and a fair return policy.