The Mountain Hardwear Monkey Man jacket is an absolute MUST for winter backcountry enthusiasts, and a great-looking alternative to the run-of-the-mill fleece jackets you see everyday. In fact, it’s one of the most unique, technical and attractive fleeces around. Made with Polartec Thermal Pro High Loft, the Monkey Man’s fleece, affectionately known as Monkey Phur, is more plush and shaggy than the common standard. It makes you warm just looking at it. That said, the Monkey Man is ironically much lighter than comparable fleece jackets, which brings us to its technical side. It’s perfect for those concerned with insulating efficiency, i.e., most warmth per weight, and compressibility (packs well). When you hold the Monkey Man up to the sun, you’ll see its noticeably open structure, dots of light poking through. It’s SUPER breathable, so when you’re skinning up the mountain quickly on a cold, bluebird day, you won’t overheat and have to shed layers. Polartec Power Stretch cuffs and waist afford excellent freedom of movement, as well. Its insulative depth, great breathability, and extremely light weight prompted Everest guru, Ed Viesturs, to bring a Monkey Man Jacket on his last Annapurna trip. Obviously not windproof, the Monkey Man will be chilly in biting (East Coast) winds. Just throw on a weatherproof shell, and you have a layering system that’s tough to beat.