Tom’s Review of the Osprey Poco Child Carrier Backpack:
When my first child was born, my wife and I decided that we wouldn’t let having kids stop us from exploring the world. We also wanted to instill in our son a spirit of adventure and curiosity and a love for the outdoors. We began doing short hikes when he was only a couple of weeks old using a front carry sling. That was fine for a few short hikes before he was very heavy but we realized we needed something a little bit more comfortable as he grew and took longer hikes.
Purchase the Osprey Poco Child Carrier on Amazon
We researched a few child carrier backpacks and eventually decided on the Osprey Poco for a number of reasons listed below. The Osprey Poco comes in three different models – the Poco, the Poco Plus and the Poco Premium. We purchased the premium, which I have written about below.
- Osprey is a brand we trust. Their backpacks are well made and Osprey stands by them with their all mighty guarantee, where they will fix anything that breaks in the backpack no matter the cause.
- The backpack is very easy to adjust depending on if my wife is carrying the baby or I am. This is a great feature because sometimes we would both like the workout of carrying the child and we are able to quickly adjust the size so it fits either of our backs easily.
- There is quite a bit of storage space in the backpack for longer hikes. This was a big thing for us. Taking a baby hiking means you have to bring many additional supplies, food and water, and all of our regular supplies, plus I always bring a lot of camera equipment.
- There is a small detachable backpack for when my son gets older to be able to participate and feel like he is helping out.
- There is a built-in sunshade which is very easy to get out and put away. This was also a big deal for our family because most of our family hikes are in sunny weather and our little family sunburns like you wouldn’t believe.
- There are a lot of mesh panels. The carrier has a mesh back panel to help keep you cool when carrying the backpack and the child has mesh on either side of their body to help keep them cool during the summer as well.
- It has a removable pad right under the child’s face. This is awesome for cleaning in case the child ever drools or spits up.
Purchase the Osprey Child Carrier on Amazon
Whenever we go on hikes with my son in his backpack, we always get so many comments regarding it. Everyone always seems so friendly when they see a family backpacking, we have met a lot of people because of the backpack.
Osprey recommends that children should not be in the backpack until they are old enough to sit up unassisted. We may have started our son a little early in the backpack but he didn’t seem to have any problems and since there was one person not wearing the backpack, that person was able to make sure he was breathing and okay.
There are a few things about the backpack that I don’t really care for
- The lower pocket is pretty big and can fit quite a bit of stuff, but it is only available when the kickstand is out. If you put the kickstand away you lose all of that space. It makes it a lot harder to transport the pack with the kickstand out so I often need to take a small sack filled with stuff I will later put into the bottom pocket.
- The cell phone pocket on the strap is way to small for a smart phone. I’ve heard it fits camera’s but mine wont fit in there either.
- The weight of the pack is a little high. It weighs 7 lbs 9 oz.
- The baby seat is a little narrow. This is actually a great thing for us right now because it fits our 10 month old pretty well but I worry that he will outgrow the pack before he is able to hike on his own.
- The baby sits a little higher on your back which puts more strain on your shoulders instead of your hips. However our baby is able to see out above my head and he loves seeing where we are going.
Purchase the Osprey Child Carrier on Amazon
Overall, I am very pleased with this backpack. A lot of times I think it is easier to put the baby in the backpack to get around rather than taking a stroller although it is more tiresome.
Make sure you test any backpack out before you purchase it especially one as expensive as the Osprey Poco. A backpack is one of the main pieces of equipment and if it is uncomfortable there isn’t much you can do about it in the backcountry.
Let us know what you think of the Osprey Poco Child Carrier or what your favorite way to carry kids while hiking is in the comments below. Also, don’t forget to sign up for the Travel Tom’s Newsletter by submitting your e-mail in the bar above.