- Gender: Male
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I have been doing a lot of research on super lightweight down jackets and narrowed things down to two options; the Patagonia Ultralight down jacket and the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer. I ordered both and my impressions favor the MHW in almost every discernible way.
The MHW is lighter (the large weighed 7.6 ounces on my digital scale), the fabric is softer to the touch, the down lofts higher because it's higher quality down (850 versus 800 fill), and, as a result, it's a warmer jacket. Additionally, the Ghost Whisperer packs down into its own pocket and doesn't require a stuff sack (the Patagonia comes with a stuff sack).
Now, a comment on fit. The cut of the MHW is fuller than the Patagonia for sure. I wouldn't really say the Patagonia is a "slim" fit as the website indicates but it is fitted somewhat. I don't think the MHW is an athletic fit as this website indicates. Frankly, I would call it "relaxed" in terms of fit but it still fits fine under my shell (as an aside, docking this jacket to 2 stars, like one of the reviews below, because it fits "large" is silly as it gives zero actual information on the actual merits of the jacket). I wear a large is virtually everything and that's what I purchased in the Ghost Whisperer. I have plenty of room for layers and honestly, if I didn't eat for a week, I could probably wear a medium. But I'm happy with the large.
In short, I returned the Patagonia. That was hard for me b/c I really like their stuff and I had sort of lost respect for MHW after they were purchased by Columbia. However, the Ghost Whisperer is simply superior to the Patagonia in every way to me. I'm very impressed and it really opens my eyes to MHW products again.