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Patagonia Classic Retro-X Jacket

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Patagonia Classic Retro-X Jacket fleece jacket

The best heavyweight fleece jacket on the market, bar none. Crushes the goofy TNF Denali Jacket. This jacket is incredibly warm, and is windproof, and has multiple pockets for storage. The best thing about this jacket is its unique shearling look.

I recommend buying this jacket at size. It's not meant for multiple layers underneath. You don't need or want a sweatshirt or sweater underneath. A light long sleeved T-shirt or turtleneck will do. If you buy a size larger, then the bottom of the jacket will not hug your waist which in turn results in cold air blowing into your belly since there's no drawstring.

This jacket is not meant to have a drawstring. If you want a drawstring, get the windproof synchilla, which I have also, and is great. Retro-X is more rugged looking; windproof synchilla is more proper looking for the office or with slacks/cords.

Update: February 17, 2007

This jacket is worth every penny. Don't think to yourself that you will buy this jacket once it goes on sale, because it'll be sold out before it even has the chance. I have both this jacket and the Retro-X Vest. I was lucky to get the vest at 20% off because of a storewide sale at Hudson Trail Outfitters. Both offer superior warm, and most importantly, they're windproof. Warm fleece is worthless without a windproof barrier.

I sometimes wear this jacket with just a t-shirt underneath, and I'm plenty warm even if it's 40°F outside. I also love the chest pocket which allows me to keep my wallet handy. I don't think this jacket needs an adjustable waist strap because it'll take away from the free movement that you get.

As someone else said, you gotta love the shearling look. The only issue that I have, being picky, is that it doesn't breathe as well as let's say a Gore-tex lined shell, but I may be asking for too much. It can get stuffy sometimes if you're exerting yourself. The synchilla windproof jacket is great also.

Price Paid: $185

The best fleece jacket that I have ever had. I'm on to my second now. We can't buy them here in the UK, so I have bought both mine on trips to the USA. Extremely warm, keeps out the wind and yet lightweight. The only thing that I would like is a waist drawcord to help keep wind out.

It may say retro, but the quality of my most recent purchase (circa '11) is not near the quality of my last couple (circa '00); they just don't last as long, especially at the elbows and pack rub points.


  • Soft
  • Cozy
  • No metal at cuffs (snaps, etc.) that interfere with iPads, etc.


  • Wear for hiking use
  • Wear at elbows for lounging
  • Airflow at pockets (cold) if pockets unzipped

This is a great classic. Although they no longer wear like iron for hiking, they are a great cozy lounger for around camp, or deck and patio lounging.

Classic fit with true to size (up one size from 10 years ago) dries fast, water beads in light showers, not for rain or wet snow, breathes and wicks better than most fleece, not for windy conditions without an additional wind blocking layer.

Source: bought it new

I have the older model, before they got smart and put in a wind blocking layer. Without that feature, my jacket is warm but really nothing more than a novelty item. People comment on its appearance, and want to touch it; but honestly, I was quite disappointed in its performance.

I just this morning took my dog for a short walk in 30 degrees with a slight breeze, and the wind just came right through the fleece. So, I deduct one point for that and one point for the fact it's short in the back and definitely needs a drawstring at the hips to block the wind coming up your back.

Would I drop some bones on this again? Uh - No. Sorry, Patagonia. Oh, my cat sure likes to sleep on it, when I let him, so I guess it does have some utility at our house!

Price Paid: $125

This is the warmest fleece I have ever worn--you can throw it over a tank top in the dead of a Minnesota Winter and be warm warm warm. It's expensive but worth it.

Unfortunately mine was stolen out of a pile of North Face and other Patagonia jackets: so that should tell you how it rates. This is the jacket of choice for cold and wind. If you're doing highly aerobic activities in it it's a little bulky and you'll probably get too warm, but otherwise it's awesome!

Fabric: Deep pile fleece
Fill: Windbloc lining
Price Paid: $199

Version reviewed: windblock

Great all around jacket. I use it for everything from skiing to climbing to hiking to everyday activities and it is great. It keeps the wind out on the windest of days. The only thing I would like to see added is a drawcord at the waist to keep heat in and wind out. It's a great jacket that I have loved.

Fabric: fleece PEF windblock
Price Paid: $199

Great jacket, great look. Got a hell of a deal on it so I jumped when I saw the price.

Love the shearling fleece look. I'd say if your looking for one get a discontinued color. You'll save a bundle and get an amazing coat.

Price Paid: 89 bucks

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Price MSRP: $229.00
Current Retail: $114.45-$229.00
Historic Range: $12.00-$229.00
Reviewers Paid: $89.00-$199.00
Weight 774 g / 27.3 oz
Fit Regular fit
Body 13-oz 100% polyester (85% recycled) bonded ¼"-pile fleece
Pocket bags 3.2-oz 100% polyester (50% recycled) warp-knit mesh with a windproof barrier and HeiQ Pure odor control
Other Fair Trade Certified sewn
Price MSRP: $229.00
Current Retail: $113.83-$229.00
Historic Range: $49.75-$229.00
Reviewers Paid: $199.00
Weight 615 g / 21.7 oz
Fit Regular fit
Body 13-oz 100% polyester (85% recycled) bonded ¼"-pile fleece
Pocket bags 3.2-oz 100% polyester (50% recycled) warp-knit mesh with a windproof barrier and HeiQ Pure odor control
Other Fair Trade Certified sewn
Price MSRP: $129.00
Current Retail: $53.40-$139.00
Historic Range: $24.83-$11,232.00
Weight 13.8 oz / 391 g
Shell Fabric 100% Polyester 1/4 in Pile Fleece, 78% Recycled
Lining Fabric 2 oz 100% Nylon
Product Details from Patagonia »

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