Osprey Poco LT Review
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Osprey Poco LT
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|Pros||Lightweight, folds fairly small for travel, less expensive, easy to use||Comfy to wear and ride in, lots of storage, canopy and hydration pocket||Easy on the wallet, fit for narrower builds, comfy for passengers and parents||Vari-flex waistband, day pack, comfy for baby||Budget-friendly, good storage|
|Cons||Hard to reach shoulder straps, torso length seems short||Higher price, hard to adjust seat, may be too long for shorter torsos||Very limited storage, canopy costs extra, no dedicated spot for a hydration bladder||Expensive, harder to use||Lower quality, not very comfortable for parent or child|
|Bottom Line||A generally average pack with a better price than much of the competition||Comfortable pack with lots of storage, a canopy, and easy to use features||This high-quality, less expensive pack is comfortable for babies and parents with narrower builds but the storage is limited||Expensive, high-end pack that is cozy for kids, but harder to use||Inexpensive option with good storage, but it isn't that comfortable to wear or ride in|
|Rating Categories||Osprey Poco LT||Kelty Journey Perfe...||Deuter Kid Comfort...||Deuter Kid Comfort Pro||LuvdBaby Premium|
|Parent Comfort (30%)|
|Child Comfort (25%)|
|Ease of Use (25%)|
|Specs||Osprey Poco LT||Kelty Journey Perfe...||Deuter Kid Comfort...||Deuter Kid Comfort Pro||LuvdBaby Premium|
|Usage Ranges||Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs||Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs||Min-Max: When child can sit upright independently - 48 lbs||Min-Max: When child can sit upright independently - 40 lbs||Min-Max: 16 lbs - 40 lbs|
|Max Pack Load||48.5 lbs||48.5 lbs||48 lbs||48 lbs||N/A|
|Weight||5.3 lbs||7.4 lbs||6 lbs||8.5 lbs||6.4 lbs|
|BGL Folded/Flat Dimensions||13.5" W x 7" H x 30" L||16" W x 10" H x 31" L||16.5" W x 10" H x 31" L||16.4" W x 9.5" H x 34.8" L||14.7" W x 9.5" H x 28.5" L|
|Fabric||210D Nylon||Body: Poly 420D Small Back Stafford
Interior: 75D Poly x 140D Nylon Blend
|210 denier polyamide fabric. Tear and abrasion resistant, watertight to 1500 mm||210 denier polyamide fabric with strong ripstop threads and PU coating.||Waterproof 600D & 300D Ripstop Polyester|
|Hydration Bladder Compatible||Yes||Yes||No||No||Yes|
|Included Accessories||Sunshade||Journey Sunshade||Daypack, Mirror||Changing Pad, Rain Cover|
|Care Instructions||Hand Wash and Hang Dry||Spot Clean||Hand Wash||Hand Wash||Spot Clean|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Osprey began in 1974 and is widely renowned all over the world. Osprey is headquartered in Cortez, Colorado, but has offices and distribution centers in other national and international locations. Osprey's goal is to make high-performing and high-quality gear suitable for adventure. They stand behind the quality of their products and proudly deliver their All Mighty Guarantee, which says the company will repair any damage or defect for any reason at no cost and regardless of when it was purchased.
The Poco LT carrier delivers an above-average score in parent comfort compared to other options in our best baby backpack carrier review.
This pack is not terrible, and testers found it comfortable enough for the average day hike. Still, it didn't provide anything outstanding to make it uber comfortable for the long haul.
The shoulder strap padding is good, but the adjustability is only average with load lifters that are harder to access for some testers making it challenging to adjust on the fly. Even at the tightest setting, some testers felt like they weren't tight enough and didn't really offer the support they should.
The padding on the waistband is somewhat thin compared to competitors but adjusting it is simple and easy to do while moving. The forward-pull waist adjustment tightens easily. The strap attaches to the center of the belt, so it doesn't distribute the pressure as widely as some of the competition, so it doesn't support the load as well as it could.
The back padding is better than much of the competition, and we really liked the torso length adjustment on this pack, as it was easier and more intuitive to change than some of the others we tested. It was easy to find the right torso length, and the adjustment stayed in place once set, so there is no concern about going in to make adjustments once you hit the trail.
Child comfort is essential and can make the difference between a fun-filled day and a lesson in frustration and patience as your child struggles to get cozy while they're along for the ride. While the Osprey Poco LT isn't uncomfortable, some top-ranking competitors surpass it, providing elevated comfort for little riders.
The seat padding is good but making adjustments is a struggle we didn't experience with most competitors. The seat bottom is very wide with stiff and supportive padding. It isn't as thick as some others, but it is stiffer, offering more support without the bulk. The seat height secures with Velcro, and making adjustments means cramming your hands into small pockets, and ours came away scraped every time. We imagine larger hands will struggle even more than we did, which is something to consider for men with larger hands.
The shoulder straps are not adjustable, which seems short-sighted for many reasons, and Osprey must be relying on the seat adjustment to get a proper harness fit. The elastic prevents them from being too tight on smaller passengers, but older kids may feel too restricted by the one-size-fits-all style harness. Given the various adjustments we've seen over the years, this doesn't seem like the best solution going.
The headrest padding is minimal but enough to keep your baby comfortable. The face rest, which is often more important as a napper tends to fall forward, is wide and well-padded compared to the headrest. The fabric is smooth and friendly and wipes clean easier than much of the competition. Unfortunately, it isn't removable like some of the other backpacks, and this will cause a problem at some point, even if it is only the build-up of drool over time.
This pack has no stirrups. While stirrups are not mandatory for a comfortable ride, most of the competition does offer something for little ones to rest their feet in, so it seems strange that a higher-quality brand has decided to forgo them altogether. This means your little one can't put pressure on the stirrups to lift themselves, but it also means their legs will be dangling, which could be uncomfortable over time on inner thighs.
Ease of Use
Ease of use is the one place where the Poco LT shines with a score on par with the top-ranking packs in the group.
Most of the straps on this pack are easy to access and adjust. The parent-related adjustments (like shoulder straps and waistband) can be changed while you wear the pack, but some were not as tight as we'd like them to be. The straps on the waistband are our favorite pull-forward style strap, which made shifting the passenger's weight easier when hiking.
The torso adjustment on this pack has very grippy Velcro, and while it isn't as challenging as some of the competition to change, it can be frustrating if the Velcro connects before you are ready. Also, it seems to have a shorter range than some of the competition, and we had it maxed out on our 5'9 tester. We recognize fitting a pack is somewhat subjective to wearer preference, but it might be noteworthy that taller than average parents might find the length wanting.
You must adjust the cockpit while the baby is out of the pack, and some were harder than others, thanks again to the super Velcro involved. We aren't convinced that the one-size-fits-all shoulder harness is the best design.
The canopy for the LT is easy to deploy and tucks away into a zippered pocket when not in use. It seems to sit low and could be a problem for older kids as it was a close head-to-canopy spacing for our 7-month-old passenger during testing. However, it provides good coverage, and we appreciate it when a pack offers a canopy, as all-weather types require some cover. This pack also has a designated pocket for a hydration bladder, and it is easy to use and well-placed.
Oddly, the kickstand on this pack is always out unless it is folded for transportation or storage. To fully set up the carrier for use, you must close the safety lock buckles, which are very tight and take significant effort. They create a stable frame for overall use. Even with the kickstand out all the time, the pack does not feel or look bulky.
The storage on the Poco LT is only average, with some options offering significantly more and others less storage.
This pack has a larger lower compartment and a medium-sized compartment higher up on the pack. The lower compartment has a large zippered opening. It is easy to get things in and out, and the zippers run smoothly. It does not include any interior organization, so you will be searching for smaller items you place inside. The upper compartment has the same smooth zipper, but the opening is not as wide, so it is better suited to flat items like diapers, wipes, and sunscreen for your baby. The smaller size means less fishing around to find what you need.
The waistband on the Poco LT has two pockets, one medium-sized pocket on either side of the buckle. Both pockets have elastic closures, and getting things in and out is easy. We didn't experience anything falling out during testing, and the mesh fit our iPhone X without a problem.
The canopy and hydration bladder both have their own dedicated pockets, which is good for keeping things organized and prevents using valuable space for these accessories. The hydration pack hangs on a loop inside the pocket, and the pocket sits between the child seat and the back padding.
Should You Buy the Osprey Poco LT?
The Osprey Poco LT is ideal for travel, day hiking, or everyday adventures in tight spaces, such as busy city streets and stores. It comes with a canopy and offers enough storage for briefer outings. It's also lightweight, compact when folded, and features a stowaway harness and hip belt to keep straps secure when storing the pack.
What Other Baby Backpacks Should You Consider?
If you're an avid hiker and envision longer or more intense treks with your little adventurer, we suggest going with the Kelty Journey PerfectFIT Elite. It's a top-ranking backpack with more bells and whistles, such as adjustable stirrups for the child to rest their feet (a feature missing on the Osprey Poco LT), which adds some relief on longer hikes, and plenty of storage to stash gear.
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