Best Baby Carrier Backpack for Hiking and Outdoors

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Our favorite baby carrier backpack (and toddler carrier) is perfect for hiking, camping, travel, and exploring the great outdoors.

We've hiked many a trail with our favorite baby carrier backpack, now a toddler carrier, since Zeke was born two short years ago.

We've also been asked about it numerous times by both family and friends.

From Arkansas hikes like Hawksbill Crag, to Colorado to the far south of Texas, hiking Santa Elena Canyon while camping in Big Bend National Park, our Osprey has seen us through quite a few outdoor adventures together.

Before Zeke was born, we knew we needed a baby carrier that would stand up to all of our outdoor adventures. Of course, we also wanted it to be comfortable, lightweight, and easy to carry; and we wanted it to grow with him.

hiking with a baby in the Osprey Poco AG Premium baby hiking carrier at Sam's Throne in Arkansas

After a lot of research, we decided on the Osprey Poco AG Premium Child Carrier. It's been the best purchase we could have ever made and the ONE baby product we've used over and over and over again.

How we use our Osprey baby carrier backpack

The Osprey carrier is actually quite versatile, and we've used it in many different ways for many different things. While it's mostly meant for hiking, we've also used it in other ways…

fishing with kids and toddler in an Osprey baby and toddler carrier

  • Hiking with kids (of course)
  • Fishing with our kids
  • Dispersed camping
  • Walks around our neighborhood
  • Grocery shopping (for real)
  • Eating on the trail or while traveling – it makes a phenomenal baby seat and keeps Zeke safe when we don't necessarily want him running around, even more so when he was really little.
  • Riding burros to Boquillas – Zeke rode on Dan's back.
  • Working outside in the yard and garden – Dan and I both would take Zeke outside in the carrier before he was able to walk.
  • While we haven't used it in the airport, it'd be a great way to navigate the airport, especially when your child is really little.

Key features of the Osprey Poco AG Premium carrier backpack:

The carrier has an anti-gravity (AG) suspension system. It has aluminum stays that provide stability both while carrying and while sitting on the ground.

Osprey Poco AG Premium baby carrier large storage area and aluminum stays for stability

I love that the child seat has padding, a drool pad, and a softer fleece lining. We can strap Zeke in with the safety harness, and his feet can either dangle down, which he seems to prefer, or be secured in the provided adjustable foot straps.

Some of our favorite features of the Osprey Poco AG Premium:

  • Comfort for Zeke – It's comfortable for Zeke; he's loved it since he was a baby. He absolutely loves being in his pack when we're out exploring.
  • Comfort for Us – It has a Fit-on-the-Fly hipbelt we can easily adjust to fit whoever is carrying. It also has an adjustable sternum strap. The mesh shoulder harness and backpanel give ventilation.

Hiking with a baby carrier in Pea Ridge National Military Park in Arkansas

  • Sunshade – If it's extremely sunny and hot, we can pull out the sunshade to give Zeke a little shade. As he's gotten bigger, he doesn't love the shade so much; he likes to be out in the open. But when he was little, it was a lifesaver.

hipbelt pockets on the Osprey baby carrier backpack

  • Storage – There's a small, removable backpack built into the carrier, as well as a larger bottom storage area. There are also various little pockets, like the hipbelt pockets. We carry things like sunscreen, snacks, diapers, and more. We've even stuffed a jacket or two in the pack.

removable daypack on the Osprey Poco AG Premium baby carrier

  • Water Reservoir Storage – There's a sleeve for a water reservoir, so no need to carry a water bottle if you don't want to.
  • Grab Handles – The grab handles make it easy to grab and throw in the car or carry wherever you need it.
  • Stores well – The carrier itself folds up and stays put, taking up a smaller footprint wherever you need to store it.

Specs of the Poco AG Premium baby carrier backpack/toddler carrier backpack:

  • Price point – $330 for the Poco AG Premium; $290 for the Poco AG Plus; and $250 for the Poco AG.
  • Max load, including child, pack, and gear – 48.5 pounds (all 3 carriers).
  • Weight of the Premium pack is 8.31 pounds; Plus is 7.67 pounds; and Poco AG is 6.9 pounds.
  • 2,380 cubic inches of carrying capacity in the Premium; 1,587 cubic inches in the Plus; and 1,220 cubic inches in the Poco AG.

Extra accessories you may want to consider:

You can buy both a rain cover (perfect for hiking in the mountains where conditions are unpredictable) and a travel cover or carrying case for the Osprey. The travel cover is especially useful for air travel.

dad and toddler son hiking with Osprey baby carrier backpack in Northwest Arkansas

Looking for more outdoor gear for kids recommendations?

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How to Get Started Kayaking with Kids

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Best Baby Carrier Backpack for Hiking and Outdoors

Best carrier for hiking and outdoors for a baby or toddler
Osprey Poco AG Premium baby carrier backpack/toddler carrier backpack

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