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The Best Baby Carriers for Hiking 2022

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deuter kid comfort active hiking carrier in blue against blue or purple background with swirl pattern

Runner’s World; Courtesy Deuter

There’s a lot that goes into a hiking gear setup, but one of the most important pieces of gear is your pack. The purpose of a hiking pack is to distribute weight and carry it evenly, but when the kid comes along, you also have to keep them safe and comfortable. We love a good jogging stroller, but for off-road outings, baby carriers are undeniably more convenient pieces of equipment. This piece of gear has the tricky job of striking a balance between being a comfortable hiking pack and being a safe way to bring your child along. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best baby carriers for hiking that will keep your little one safely contained without adding uncomfortable weight or limiting your range of motion.

The Best Baby Carriers for Hiking

What to Consider

Weight Limit

Most full-size carriers have a weight limit of around 48 pounds, and it’s important not to exceed this recommendation for structural stability and child safety reasons. Baby-specific carriers will weigh less and have a lower weight limit, though many models with a higher weight limit are highly adjustable and can cinch down or expand to fit babies and toddlers of different heights and weights.

Features

Many baby carriers for hiking come with special features, like pop-up sun shades to keep your little one protected from the sun, stirrups for them to kick their feet around, and one or more options for loading them in—usually from the top or side. This will impact the comfort of your child, but it’s important to not overlook your own comfort, as well. Look at the weight distribution for the hip belt, load lifters to stay balanced, and how well the padding and straps fit your own body so everyone has a great day on the hiking trail.

How We Selected

We evaluated a range of offerings from trusted brands in the outdoor industry, and chatted with hikers on the trails, ranging from steeper sections with tricky terrain to the most relaxed in-town spots where the kids can get out and run around. These hiking carriers include options for babies, toddlers, and a few with a higher weight limit for older kiddos, and we only chose trusted, vetted models and brands to ensure the safest and most comfortable outing for your family.

For more kid-friendly outdoor gear, check out our top picks for kids’ running shoes, jogging strollers, and gifts for new moms who run.

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1

Best Overall

Osprey

Poco Child Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 7 pounds, 11 ounces
2

Best for Toddlers

Deuter

Kid Comfort Pro

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 8 pounds, 5 ounces
3

Most Versatile

Thule

Sapling Child Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 7 pounds
4

Best Gear Storage

Kelty

Journey PerfectFIT Elite Child Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 50 pounds
Access Top
Weight 7 pounds, 4 ounces
5

Best Light-Trails-to-Town

LILLEbaby

All Seasons Ergonomic Baby Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 45 pounds
Access Top
Weight 2.5 pounds
6

Best Balance of Weight Distribution and Comfort

Osprey

Poco LT Child Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 5 pounds, 1 ounce
7

Smoothest Side-Entry Option

Deuter

Kid Comfort Venture

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48.5 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 6 pounds
8

Best Combo of Cost and Comfort

Kelty

Journey Perfectfit Kid Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 40 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 6 pounds, 6 ounces
9

Best Affordable Pack

ClevrPlus

Cross Country Baby Backpack

Key Specs

Weight Limit 33 pounds
Access Top
Weight 5.5 pounds
10

Best Streamlined Carrier

WIPHA

Baby Backpack Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 50 pounds
Access Not listed
Weight 6.6 pounds
11

Best for Travel

Ergobaby

All Carry Positions Breathable Mesh Baby Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 40 pounds
Access Top
Weight 6.7 pounds
12

Most Adjustable

Chicco

SmartSupport Backpack Carrier

Key Specs

Weight Limit 40 pounds
Access Top
Weight 6.7 pounds
13

Best For Kids Who’d Rather Stand

Piggyback Rider

Scout Child Toddler Carrier Backpack

Key Specs

Weight Limit 50 pounds
Access N/A
Weight 1.5 pounds
14

Best Women-Specific Frame

Deuter

Kid Comfort Active SL Child Carrier — Women’s

Key Specs

Weight Limit 48 pounds
Access Top, side
Weight 5 pounds, 13 ounces
15

Best Ergonomic Collapsible

phil&teds

Parade Child Carrier Frame Backpack

Key Specs

Weight Limit 40 pounds
Access Top
Weight 4.4 pounds

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