Review: Osprey Poco AG Child Carrier
This has to be one of our favorite and useful pieces of kid gear we have used yet! When our kids were small infants, I always wore them in the front of me in a wrap-style carrier. I loved how secure and close they were, and how my arms were free to do other stuff. At about 6 months though, my kiddos always got too wiggly and were not content to be held inward by a wrap.
A couple of years ago we purchased an Osprey child carrier, a frame-style backpack that is rated to carry a child 4 months (or able to hold head up well) to 3 years (though I can’t imagine carrying around a 3 year old very long!). We got ours on sale at REI, and it has been well worth its money!
From the first time in it, our little sprout loved it. She loved being able to see all around her, safe and secure. She always got excited when we would put her in the backpack, because she knew we were going to do something--bike, hike, go to the zoo or even just putter around the yard. It was like she was able to be a part of things, even before she could get around well on her own.
Even when she was 14 months old and running around, she loved to go in the Osprey backpack and tag along. It was the perfect place for her to nap when I was going and busy. The motion put her to sleep, i think! I also wore her in the backpack sometimes when going into a store or shopping. One less kid running around dropping jars of pasta sauce! Yes, I speak from experience! It is a great alternative to a stroller in my opinion!
The Osprey Poco is on to carrying its second child (Sprout #5) and it still is in amazing shape. We have started carrying around Sprout #5 at 3 months old, and it makes fishing from shore, walks to the library, or family hikes easier and more fun for everyone!
Now to the features of the backpack itself. Osprey has several different models of Child Carrier backpacks, in different colours, along with tons of other quality backpacks, hydration packs, and accessories. We have the base model, the Poco AG.
Some features I love about it:
The backpack has an adjustable chest harness that keeps even the wiggliest kid super secure. The height of the child's 'seat' can be adjusted as well so the child's head always sits at the same height to the pack. My little one can just rest her head on the front pad and have a great nap! The backpack is a frame style so it is solid around the child and protects them.
There is a good amount of storage in it! Not that I like to pack it full (that's a lot more weight to carry around) but there is plenty of room to stuff the entire family's rain coats and a couple water bottles in it for a quick hike! The Premium model has even a removable day pack attached to it, but again, that's a lot of extra weight to carry around.
The harness for the adult is fully adjustable. The torso is adjustable from XS to L (I put it on XS and my husband on M) so the hip belt fits at the right place on everyone. That is super important as most of the weight is carried there rather than on the shoulders.
I like the built-in sunshade. It slides out of the back of the backpack and clips in. You can also buy a rain cover that fits over the sunshade and the child is totally covered from the rain (even when biking!). We keep the rain cover in the backpack at all times and it is quick and easy to pop on when we encounter rain. Then baby is happy!
It is easy to get on and off! In part, that is due to the aluminum bar that swings out and creates a platform for the carrier to say upright when on the ground, and two handles on the top to help lift it up. It also folds up slightly to take up less space when storing.
Check out Osprey's website HERE for more information, specs, prices and dealers.
What about you? Do you have a backpack, carrier or wrap that helps you adventure with your little one? I would love to hear about it!