I’ve started to look around for a child carrier backpack. My baby girl is only 1 month old, but the need to get out is getting real. The purpose of this topic is two-fold. I’d appreciate tips and opinions on the various available options and if you have one you don’t use anymore, I might be interested in buying it from you.
From my research so far, it seems like the bees-knees option is the Osprey Poco. The options from Deuter and Thule also looks good.
Then there is also the much cheaper Northridge baby carrier.
We have got two baby-carriers which we use frequently. One of them is the older version Osprey Poco Plus. I can definitely recommend this. They have absolutely thought of everything for the comfort of the baby and the carrier. I see the new version has got the Anti-Gravity hip belt which fits like a dream. The built-in sunshade is also a great feature as it packs away very neatly and it will never get lost. It does cost a lot so my opinion would be on how often you would think of using it. If you are only planning on taking short 30 minute hikes then the entry level options would be more than enough. If you are planning on doing day-hikes with the kids then all the packing space and comfort is definitely the way to go and I would recommend the Osprey.
My father bought us the Osprey. Wow! What a fantastic carrier! That hip belt you mentioned is by far the best I’ve ever experienced. We use it at every opportunity. At this stage mostly to get her body used to it as she’s technically still a bit too small for it. We walk around the block, take the dogs to the park, even shopping and she loves it. It’s a bit expensive, but worth it.
I searched the forum for info on baby carriers and came across your post. My baby is 6 months old now and I’ve only been walking short trips with a fabric carrier. From what age was your baby girl able to use the Osprey carrier? I’m keen to get back into hiking again but want something that will support her quite well.
My experience is that the baby should be able to support his/her neck quite easily and be able to sit unsupported. Although the Osprey carrier is very safe with their locking mechanisms there isn’t a lot of support around the neck. Otherwise start off with small trips to the store etc to see how she handles it.
From about 6 months, maybe 5, but as Douw said, start with very short walks and see how it goes. In the beginning she sometimes fell asleep in the carrier, then I just took the shortest way home. She was also a little too small, so on the smallest settings she barely touched the stirrups. We haven’t gone on a full day hike yet (she’s 11 months old now), but we have hiked for about 4 hours, max, but with nice rest stops. For me the biggest concern is protecting her from the sun. It does have a sunshade, but that alone is not enough, so you have to get a nice sunblock and hat (and convince her to keep the hat on her head).
Thank you both!
She can’t support herself entirely yet, so I was considering going with something like the Ergobaby 360, which is a fabric carrier and where I also have the option of having her face me (she almost always falls asleep on neighbourhood walks and I’m uncertain about walking with her in any other position while she sleeps. Those also have a sun hood that seems to be quite protective. But the Osprey and other larger carriers are probably better future investments, as I’m sure they can carry a much heavier baby and I’m assuming they support the parent much better too for longer walks. Not keen to invest in both.
Thanks the info!
Yes, the support makes a big difference, for you and the baby. Those fabric carriers are only good for shopping trips and stuff like that. It gets hot and uncomfortable on hikes, not to mention it is very restrictive for her. There’s also not much point in taking your baby with if they can’t see the world. Your baby will be able to support herself soon enough, so you don’t have to make that part of your decision.
I stumbled onto this old post.
Out of the available carriers (Osprey Poco,Thule, Deuter) would you still reccommend Osprey?
Does one not miss the option of side entrance like with the Thule?
Yes, I think so, but I can’t really make a fair comparison as I have only used the Osprey. The other 2 I only have videos and photos to judge by. I just had a look at the Thule video to see what you mean with the “side entrance”. The side entrance seems like a gimmick to me and I honestly don’t know why you’d want it. Maybe to pull down the child’s sweater if it moved up when you put them in. The Osprey isn’t meant to do that. All the other features seem fairly similar. Last time I checked they were similarly priced. If that’s still the case I’d still go with the Osprey just for the proven quality and life time warranty. Also the straps is a little simpler and faster to adjust by the looks of it. The hip belt is hard to beat too. Deuter is definitely worth a look. @WillemB has one, maybe he can tell you a bit more.
Thank you very much Herman! Much appreicated.
I did also look at the Deuter, esp maybe the women specific one. @WillemB please can you help?
Hey Jeanine! I wanted an Osprey (have 3 of their heavy-load backpacks; amazing suspension) but ended up buying the Deuter Kid Comfort 2 because I couldn’t find an Osprey (no new stock and no 2nd hand at the time). Got the Deuter for R1500 on FB marketplace 2nd hand; very good condition. At the price it was a great buy and we hike with it almost daily - carries well; German engineered safety; enough pockets and storage for long day walks. Super happy with it. I still think Osprey is the gold-standard but at the price I paid the Deuter is very worth while - no regrets!
Definitely recommend Northridge. I’ve had experience with the carrier