Fleece Jacket: Monkey vs Micro Puff

9:55 p.m. on April 22, 2011 (EDT)
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hi all, I am shopping for a fleece jacket (main purpose climbing/trekking high on the Andes) and I have read good advices and recommendations for both the Mountain Hardwear Monkey and the Patagonia Micro Puff Hooded. I understand the 1st is Polartec ThermalPro and the 2nd PrimaLoft One 100-g. I understand they are different type of beasts however I found it intriguing that both are being recommended by expedition companies as middle layer for Aconcagua & Co. They seem to weight pretty much the same, the Micro Puff would cost double the Monkey however seems to have some advantages (more water and wind resistant - which could not be so important as I would take with me an outer layer/shell anyway). What do you guys think?

2:04 a.m. on April 23, 2011 (EDT)
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I have the MonkeyMan, an the reason I chose it over the Patagonia fleece was that the cut/fit was better for me and I wanted the higher loft provided by the Mountain Hardwear.  They are both good products and I would recommend trying them both on to see if cut/fit will help with your decision.

10:41 a.m. on April 23, 2011 (EDT)
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I asked the same question about a month ago. The response was that the Micro Puff and similar jackets did not breath as well as the Monkey jacket. Therefore, I got the Monkey jacket and I am happy with my purchase.

12:00 p.m. on April 23, 2011 (EDT)
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The Monkey Man/Woman and the MicroPuff are very different jackets. The Monkey Man/Woman is a fleece and the MicroPuff is a filled jacket. One immediate difference is that the Puff will stuff much smaller than the Monkey. Another, as you note, is that fleece (with the exception of the WindPro and WindStopper) is not windproof and breathes very well, while synthetic-fill is wind proof and still breathes fairly well (with the kind of shell that the Puffs have). Neither is waterproof, though the Puffs are somewhat water resistant.

I have the NanoPuff, and used it as one of my layers last December in Antarctica (and will be using it as one of my layers during the Cordillera Blanca Environmental Expedition in June/July), and have used various fleeces over the years. When having to do a fair amount of moving camps, I find that the packability is important, so tend toward filled vests and jackets, like my Integral Designs Dolomiti or for really cold conditions, my Marmot 8000 meter down parka. Another factor is that filled garments are usually easier to move around, where several layers of fleece tend to bind and restrict movement (as a result of the difference in compressability). This is not so important for trekking, of course.

But in the end, it is personal preference. And for me it depends on the circumstances.

3:18 p.m. on April 23, 2011 (EDT)
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I have a monkey man pullover and love it. I I use it mainly as a everyday workhorse for many activities. It's my go to heavy fleece when its cold when  ice climbing. I love in camp at night for the comfort. It's awesome as a pillow. When you need to compress it though not so good as Bills said. If I had to choose I would bring the nano puff on aconcagua.

6:57 p.m. on April 23, 2011 (EDT)
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I guess I'm not helping you at all if I say both? Sorry but I still have to go with both! I have both and both are deserving of high praise, but as you said they are different beasts and it comes down to personal preference. Try them both on, and whichever one you choose keep the other one in mind for down the road!

10:53 p.m. on April 24, 2011 (EDT)
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Monkey Man type "fleece" (really pile - fleece is much thinner) jackets are a lot heavier and not as warm as shelled synthetic jackets like the Patagucchi Micro Puff.

There are a lot of threads on this in various backpacking sites.

December 19, 2014
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