Gear Institute Expert Test Menu

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket

by Ryan Stuart - published November 2012

94

About The Gear Institue Rating
  • 95-100 Extremely high recommendation.
  • 90-94 Enthusiastically recommended. Exceptional.
  • 80-89 Highly recommended - few reservations.
  • 70-79 Recommended. Standard performance.
  • 60-69 Fair. Recommended for certain uses.
  • 50-59 Poor. Not recommended in general.
Click the rating number for detailed information.

THE GOOD

  • Ultra light—lightest in the test
  • Highly packable—about the size of an orange
  • Very warm for its weight
  • Good weather protection for this category
  • Excellent value

THE BAD

  • Lack of breathability hurts versatility

THE VERDICT

When we struggle to find something negative to say about a product we know we've found a winner. The Ghost Whisperer Down delivers on everything we look for in a down sweater—lightweight, warmth, packability—at a price that's right in the middle of the category.

FULL REVIEW

Warmth
The 850-fill goose down in the Ghost Whisperer’s bulging baffles can get downright hot. It was the warmest down sweater in the test. We love the fully insulated hood and the Whisperer fabric—Mountain Hardwear's propriety superlight wind and down proof nylon—makes sure none of your joules are lost in the breeze, but that windproofing doesn’t add more than a couple ounces in weight.

Fit
Made to be worn as both an outer and a midlayer, the Ghost Whisperer fits snugly, with just enough room for a base and a low profile fleece underneath. This is the most “down jacket” of the sweaters we tested, with overstuffed baffles that look ready to explode.

Compressibility/Weight
This down jacket seemingly disappears from downy opulence to a ball of nylon, about the size of an orange. At seven ounces, you don't really have to think about bringing a down jacket ever again—it disappeared in my pack.

Features
We're pretty impressed with the weather shielding properties of the Whisperer fabric. You won't need to throw on a shell in snow or even light rain. But move slowly while wearing it; breathability is close to nil.

Value
Coming in a close second in most performance categories to Canada Goose's Hybridge Lite, the Ghost Whisperer's more realistic price that wins with us.

The products featured in this test have been loaned to the Gear Institute. For more on our policies regarding editorial objectivity and sample returns, see here.

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RATINGS

Warmth
9
Fit
8
Compressibility
10
Weight
10
Features
8
Value
9
GEAR INSTITUTE RATING
94

Weight

7 oz

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