Have you ever carried a backpack on a hike and about 1/2 mile in you can feel that the weight of the pack is not distributed well, the harness doesn’t have good support or the pack simply does not fit you? And before you purchased the pack you tested it out at the store, put weight in it and walked around and made all the minor adjustments necessary to make sure the pack fit? This scenario is exactly what happened to us with the backpack carrier we purchased for our son. Unfortunately none of the preliminary testing gave us a sense of exactly how the carrier would fit or how comfortable it would be.
Here’s the story: We bought a backpack carrier for me (Melissa) to carry our son in. I tried the pack on in the store, put weight in it and “thought” I had it adjusted properly. I didn’t test it out with our son in it, as he wasn’t born yet. (Yes, we were a bit excited to get our gear) So, once he was of age to ride in the carrier we went on a 6 mile hike. Being an experienced backpacker and hiker I could tell within the first 1/4 mile of the hike the carrier was not adjusted well. So we stopped, adjusted the carrier and continued on the hike. The carrier felt a bit better but not great. I finished the hike and took the same carrier on a trip to Arizona. Big mistake! The first hike of the trip and not even 20 minutes into it I had severe neck and back pain. Although I finished the hike the next day we headed to REI and I was determined to find a carrier that fit. While looking at all the carriers available we realized there wasn’t a carrier out there that had “all” the options we were looking for. We wanted something with ample storage, water bottle holders or hydration pouch, good sun protection, comfortable, secure kick stand, mesh covering incorporated with the sun shield to protect from bugs and direct UV rays when hiking into the sun, removable changing pad and a decent color, because yes, the color of my gear does matter. The carrier we ended up with came the closest to ideal. It has a hydration pouch, good sun protection, a secure kick stand, is a good color and is comfortable. The winner ended up being the Deuter Kid Comfort III and what an unbelievable difference. I tested the carrier out this time with our son in it, walking around the store, making minor adjustments and really getting a sense of how the carrier would feel. One HUGE problem with the “other” carrier was that the waist belt could not adjust any smaller around my waist. It was cinched as far as it would go and still didn’t fit snugly. Therefore, the weight of the carrier was not resting fully on my hips. The Deuter fits around my waist perfectly with room to pull it tighter. The harness has a great range of adjustability so my husband and I can both wear it. Another disappointment about the “other” carrier was that there was no water bottle holders or hydration pocket. How am I suppose to conveniently get a drink, it’s not like I’m a camel. The Deuter has a hydration sleeve that is very convenient and helps keep me hydrated. The Deuter has an external kick stand to rest the carrier on and has a generous sun shade to protect our tyke from the suns harmful rays. There are 3 zippered pockets on the back along with a mesh stuff pocket. These pockets are smaller than the “other” carrier but the reduction in storage is worth giving up for comfort.
Here are the key features of the Deuter Kid Comfort III that I find valuable:
Adjustable harness and hip belt
Adequate sun shade
Rear view mirror stowed in hip pocket
Adjustable child seat and safety harness
Mesh stuff pockets on the sides and back
External kick stand
Deuter Kid Comfort III is highly recommend for your outdoor adventures with your tykes.
Reviewed by Melissa Edge
This review was not sponsored by Deuter.
Affiliate links are provided in the review to help us continue to bring out the adventurers in all of us and most importantly our tykes.