Nearly 2 years ago my wife & I took our one-year-old son on a very difficult hike on the Appalachian trail. I carried him in a lower-end backpack carrier, that we had borrowed. BIG MISTAKE!!!
By the end of the rigorous hike my shoulders had bruises & my whole body ached. That painful experience sent us on a hunt to find the most hardcore and comfortable kid-carrying backpack available.
Which Baby Carrier?
After trying a bunch of carriers we finally decided to purchase the Kelty FC 2.0 model:
We found it for around $199, from a store in historic Lexington, Virginia. Yes, $199 may sound expensive, but because we love to hike & travel, we felt the expense would be worth it (especially after the painful hike mentioned above), and we have most definitely gotten our money’s worth!
Over the past 2 years we’ve thoroughly tested this carrier in the mountains, at the beach, and walking around cities; it has definitely exceeded our expectations. The padded waistbelt, shoulder straps, & backpanel have kept us comfortable. The padded seat & adjustable harness has kept our son comfortable.
One of my favorite features is the extensive storage space on the rear of the backpack (pictured below). This is ultra handy because we don’t have to bring along a separate backpack for supplies. I guess the downer is that I have to carry the kid and the supplies, but my wife doesn’t seem to mind. I guess it’s good to be a gentleman, right?
Another thing that I love about the FC 2.0 is how adjustable it is. It perfectly fit our son when he was a shrimpo, and it still fits him 2 years later now that he’s a giant. Even more important than that: I can still carry him in comfort (it carries up to 50 lbs.).
So I give a resounding 3 thumbs up for the Kelty FC 2.0 Child Carrier.
Just be careful if your kid likes to pull hair. They sit at a perfect angle to yank away. You can click here to see Kelty’s line of carriers, and click on the image below to find this on Amazon:
Here are some specifications & features:
• Auto-deploy kickstand (US Patent 5,626,271)
• Five-point, adjustable child’s harness
• No-pinch Hinges (US Patent 5,626,271)
• Under-seat storage
• Padded adjustable-height child’s seat
• Toy loops
• Carry/lift handles
• 50-pound weight limit
• Removable, washable cockpit pad
• Lightweight aluminum frame
• Organizer pocket
• Sliding waistbelt torso-length adjustment
• Two-layer, padded and contoured waistbelt
• Curved, padded shoulder straps
• Padded backpanel
• Waist belt storage pockets
• Load-lifter straps
• Sternum strap
• Scherer Cinch waistbelt system (US Patent 5,465,886)