As a steelhead guide in Northern Michigan I  find myself out in a variety of weather conditions.  More often than not the fall, winter, and spring seasons tend to be cool if not downright cold. Having the correct gear and layering system can be the difference between fishing all day and hitting the boat ramp early.  I have a self-admitted love affair with the Puff type jackets and pants that Patagonia offers. I have several Nano Puff Jackets that are fantastic, but I was looking for something a bit warmer for the coldest of days.

After searching the Patagonia site I found the new Patagonia Macro Puff Hoody.  This is the warmest synthetic insulation jacket that Patagonia offers.  Spending my days in and around rivers I have always preferred the synthetic insulation due to its ability to retain its warmth even when wet.  The first thing I noticed when I received this jacket is how amazingly lightweight and packable this it is.  I have found it to be incredibly warm, noticeably warmer than the Micro or Nano Puffs. The PlumaFill insulation  replicates the structure of natural down in a continuous synthetic material.  I found the cut of this jacket to be roomy enough to allow for plenty of freedom on movement without being overly bulky or blousy.  The Macro Puff also has a longer hem and provides more coverage than the other Puff jackets that I have.  It has two hand warmer pockets as well as an external left chest zipper pocket.  Perhaps my favorite feature is the hood on this jacket.  The hood is a bit over sized and can be cinched down with a single pull to wrap neatly around a hat without taking away your peripheral vision.  This feature coupled with a jacket that can be zipped up well past the chin offers unbeatable coverage and warmth in the wind, or when running a jet boat upstream in the cold.

This may not be the least expensive jacket out there, but it is the best cold weather jacket that I have ever owned.  If you are a winter outdoor sportsman I encourage you to check out this awesome piece of equipment. It will allow you to be out there longer!

Matt Barthels