Hiking is one of the most popular activities for adults to enjoy nature and work out a bit. It takes a bit of endurance and love for the wild. It is a very popular activity but most people decide to give it up when a child comes in their lives when they do not have to. The love for hiking can be developed at an early age and parenting should not be limited to something done only at home. It can be done even on the trail as long as the right equipment is packed. We are mainly referring to hiking baby carriers. They are the best solution to keep enjoying hiking and take a small child along for a walk out in nature.
Hiking baby carriers are fairly similar to regular hiking backpacks except they are a bit larger. The increase in size is necessary in order to accommodate the baby supporting harness and have a good amount of storage. The only trouble is that they can get quite heavy. People have the bad habit of stuffing as much as possible in these carriers and use every single bit of that storage space which will cause it to be quite heavy.
As long as the parent packs things responsibly, it should be just fine. Having the storage space is simply reassuring. The not so great part is that there are not that many models to choose from. It is a niche product and there are not that many parents that go hiking with their toddler. Still, we were able to find a few decent models for our list. To keep things short let us get right into our list of recommendations for the top 10 best hiking baby carriers in 2018.
Best Hiking Baby Carriers in 2018
Table of Contents
- 10. Be Mindful Camping Child Carrier Backpack
- 9. Osprey Packs Poco AG Child Carrier
- 8. Kiddy Adventure Pack
- 7. Deuter Kid Comfort 1
- 6. Osprey POCO AG Plus Child Carrier
- 5. Deuter Kid Comfort 3
- 4. Clevr Deluxe Red Baby Toddler Backpack Cross Country Carrier
- 3. Deuter Kid Comfort 2
- 2. phil&teds Parade Lightweight Backpack Carrier
- 1. Kelty Tour 1.0 Child Carrier
- What To Look For When Searching For A Child Carrier
10. Be Mindful Camping Child Carrier Backpack
The Be Mindful camping carrier backpack is a rather versatile pick for the ones that need storage, good support and reliable safety for their toddler. It is a large backpack with multiple zippered pockets that offer the same storage space as a duffle bag. To keep it lightweight, the backpack uses polyester and an aluminum frame to maintain proper support. The built-in carrier for kids is easy to adjust and has a 4-point harness as well as a padded seat. Last but not least, the backpack comes with a hydration bag and an insulated pouch.
- Insulated pouch, hydration bag
- Padded baby seat and 4 points adjustable harness
- Plenty of storage space
- Waist belt is quite uncomfortable to wear
The waist belt does serve a functional purpose as it is meant to ensure that the backpack is properly secured. The only issue is that it is quite restrictive and can be a bit uncomfortable. It is better to not tighten it too much.
9. Osprey Packs Poco AG Child Carrier
Osprey Packs Poco AG child carrier is one of the premium models on our list and comes with a matching price tag. The model is made using a premium material such as soft foam padding for the baby seat, durable nylon, and an aluminum frame. The baby seat offers enough adjustment option to ensure a good fit for the child, the shoulder straps can also be adjusted but most importantly, the waist strap is padded. The backpack was made to be as comfortable as possible while still being lightweight.
- Very comfortable to carry
- Easy to adjust the baby harness, shoulder and waist straps
- Built-in sunshade for the child
- Quite expensive
The baby carrier from Osprey Packs is quite expensive when compared with the rest of the models that made it into our list. However, it is truly a premium model and this is easy to notice just by looking at the build quality and attention to detail that the manufacturers invested in their product.
8. Kiddy Adventure Pack
Kiddy Adventure Pack is a good pick for parents that want something simple. The backpack was made to be lightweight and functional. It has several zippered pockets on the back and a few extra ones on the sides. The shoulder strap and waist belt are padded and adjustable while the baby seat features a hidden sunshade. In terms of robustness, the backpack has an aluminum frame and it is made out of a tear-resistant fabric. Last but not least, the backpack can support a maximum weight load of 40 pounds.
- Maximum supported load of 40 pounds
- Hidden sunshade
- Padded shoulder straps and waist belt
- Poor manual
The model also allows the parent to adjust the baby seat strap and harness. Sadly, it is not that straightforward and the manual does a fairly poor job of explaining how to do it. It is poorly written and the illustrations are not helping all that much.
7. Deuter Kid Comfort 1
Deuter is one of the more notorious brands on our list mainly because it has multiple models of baby carriers for hikers. The Kid Comfort 1 is a hot seller mainly for the amount of storage it offers and the how easy it is to adjust. It can support a maximum volume limit of 48.5 pounds and it is made out of nylon with a super-polytex coating. The child seat has plenty of padding just like the waist belt and the shoulder straps. The model also has a sunshade for the child and a sturdy aluminum frame.
- Comfortable seat for the child and built-in sunshade
- Plenty of storage space
- Very durable nylon construction
- Can be difficult to carry when loaded with a lot of weight
The backpack is comfortable to wear as long as it is not loaded with too much weight. Going over 25 pounds will make it feel as if it does not offer enough back support. This can cause it to feel rather uncomfortable and some may even experience some back pain.
6. Osprey POCO AG Plus Child Carrier
The Osprey POCO AG Plus child carrier is actually the upgraded version of the original POCO AG but has almost the same price tag. The main difference is the size of the backpack as it is considerably larger. This also means it has a larger storage capacity. Like any other baby carrier backpack, it has adjustable straps for pretty much everything. As for diversity, the model can be found in multiple different colors.
- Child harness and padded cockpit
- Plenty of zippered pockets and storage space
- Quite lightweight
- Waist belt puts pressure on hips
Not everyone will have issues with the waist band but some will find that it can become uncomfortable especially on the hips. It is placed a bit lower than usual which explains why this happens.
5. Deuter Kid Comfort 3
Deuter Kid Comfort 3 might not be for everyone mainly due to the high price tag. The model is also one of the largest on our list. It supports a maximum load of 48 pounds and has a total volume of 18 liters. The aluminum frame ensures that it is sturdy even when carrying a lot of weight. The model is fully adjustable in almost every way including the child seat and has plenty of padding to provide optimal comfort. It also comes with a small sunshade for the child and good ventilation to reduce sweating.
- Good ventilation
- 48 pounds capacity, 18 liters volume
- Very comfortable for the child
- Quite expensive
The backpack is the most expensive model that made it into our list. Not everyone is willing to spend this much on a hiking backpack even if it has the Deuter branding. The quality is there and plenty of storage space. The ones that do not mind spending more on a backpack will not be disappointed but for everyone else, there are plenty of alternatives.
4. Clevr Deluxe Red Baby Toddler Backpack Cross Country Carrier
Clevr is the kind of brand that offers smart choices. That means affordability and utility. Their Delixe Red baby backpack is a good pick for the ones that enjoy hiking. It has a comfortable seat for the child with adjustable straps and plenty of padding. The shoulder straps and waist belt are also padded. The model is made mostly out of polyester to make it tear resistant. The storage area consists of a mini backpack that is retractable. As for the child seat, it is suitable for children of up to 33 lbs. between 6 months and 4 years old.
- Durable construction
- Removable mini backpack
- Plenty of storage in the main compartment and side pockets
- Looks a bit cheap
The backpack serves its purpose quite well. What might be a bit annoying is the fact that it looks a bit cheap. The build quality is decent and it will prove to be difficult to find a better deal for the same price.
3. Deuter Kid Comfort 2
Deuter Kid Comfort 2 is by far the most popular model from their line. It is a large backpack that offers more than enough storage space for an adult and a child. It has multiple zippered pockets and two large main compartments. The model also has plenty of padding for the parent and child and ensures it does not put too much pressure on the back. It has a volume of 16 liters and supports a maximum weight limit of 48.5 pounds.
- Plenty of storage space
- Very easy to adjust
- Durable, tear-proof material
Compared to other similar backpacks, this one is on the pricier side. It is truly a premium backpack and that is quite easy to notice. The build quality is there and pretty much everything about it can be adjusted. It has a lot of useful features and the ones that do not mind paying the premium price tag, will not be disappointed.
2. phil&teds Parade Lightweight Backpack Carrier
phil&teds Parade lightweight baby carrier is one of the more compact backpacks on our list. It has a simple design and storage space enough to pack just the essentials. The backpack is more for casual hikes. Even if the backpack is so compact and weighs just 4.4 pounds, it can support a maximum weight of 40 pounds. The model even has a small detachable backpack and uses a mesh material that reduces sweating for the person carrying it. As for robustness, the backpack uses an aluminum frame.
- Foldable for easier storage
- Removable backpack
- Limited storage space
Being such a small backpack means that the storage space is severely limited. It will be extremely difficult to pack larger objects. The backpack was made for hikers that do not need to pack a lot. It was made to be extremely compact and comfortable to wear.
1. Kelty Tour 1.0 Child Carrier
Kelty Tour 1.0 child carrier is a great option for pretty much everyone that is into hiking. It is a simple backpack with plenty of storage space and a very sturdy construction. The aluminum frame ensures that it will stand upright when placed down while the adjustable straps make sure that it will fit comfortably. The child seat has plenty of padding and a harness to keep the baby safe. It also has a secure system for the legs of the child and manages to be lightweight enough.
- 5-point child harness, leg-secure system
- 13-liter volume supports a maximum load of 40 pounds
- Weight distribution is not great
The fact that the main compartment is placed at the top, leaving the bottom without any storage areas will cause it to feel a bit unbalanced. As long as it is not overloaded with weight, it should be wearable but it will put more pressure on the shoulders of the person carrying it.
What To Look For When Searching For A Child Carrier
Sadly there are not that many hiking baby carriers to choose from. It is more of a niche product and this can be observed just by performing a small search on any online retailer. The ones that can be found usually look almost the same with some small differences between them. From a pricing standpoint, almost all of them are in the same category with some models being a bit more expensive than others as they are advertised as being premium. For the consumer, this should not be much of a concern since all of them need to be compliant with certain safety standards. With that being said, here are some important things to look out for when searching a hiking child carrier.
- Storage capacity. This can be a double-edged stored. More storage can be appealing but there is also the temptation to pack it full which will cause the backpack to be quite heavy. Even if it is made to be as comfortable as possible, a backpack that weighs over 40 pounds when filled, will be difficult to carry.
- Padding. Padding is important since it is that one element that can make a backpack easier to carry on the back for hours and hours. The most important thing that gets neglected is the waist belt. That needs to be padded.
- Child safety. Child safety should be the most important thing. A decent baby hiking backpack should have at least adjustable straps or a harness.