In-depth baby product reviews led by a Pediatrician

Osprey Poco Plus Review

Super comfortable carrier for parents and children with lots of useful storage
osprey poco plus baby backpack review
Credit: Abriah Wofford
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Price:   $370 List | $370.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Best child comfort, custom fit possibilities, loads of storage
Cons:  Doesn't fit all users
Manufacturer:   Osprey
By Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz  ⋅  Nov 20, 2017
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
81
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Parent Comfort - 30% 8.0
  • Storage - 20% 7.0
  • Child Comfort - 25% 10.0
  • Ease of Use - 25% 7.0

The Skinny

The Osprey Poco Plus is a quality backpack carrier with superior comfort features for little passengers. This pack has a stretchy soft harness with a padded structured seat that doesn't fold under baby's weight. It has an angled face rest, removable drool pad, and an adjustable cockpit for secure seating. This pack is also comfortable for the wearer with increased adjustability for parents to create a more custom fit. It has the longest torso range in the group and a more structured waistband to help support the weight. While this option is more expensive, we think it is a good choice for parents who plan to take regular outdoor adventures for years to come.

Older Versions Recalled
Versions of the Poco created from 2012-14 were recalled in 2017 as a result of an identified fall risk. The most recent version of the Poco does not fall under this recall.

Our Analysis and Test Results

A Rose by any Other Name Smells as Sweet
The "Poco Plus" was previously named the "Poco AG Plus", which replaced the name previous to that, which was, wait for it, the "Poco Plus". Our hands-on testing was on the Poco AG Plus, but except for the loss of "AG" in the name, the product now known as the Poco Plus has all the same features and comfort that make us love and recommend it.

Osprey began in 1974 in Cortez, Colorado, near the San Juan Mountains. Osprey's mission is to design and make high-performing gear that can handle adventure. The company believes in its equipment and quality so much they started the All Mighty Guarantee, which guarantees that the company will repair any damage or defect in its gear for free no matter what it is or when it was purchased. And if they can't fix the issue, they will replace it.

Performance Comparison



osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the osprey offers padding and internal structure with extra...
The Osprey offers padding and internal structure with extra adjustability to create a custom fit for a comfortable experience.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Parent Comfort


The Osprey isn't the best in the group for parent comfort, but it holds its own with more features than the average pack and a comfortable fit overall.


Parent comfort is paramount for this kind of gear and can influence how often you use the pack and the duration of your trips.

The back of the Osprey has a mesh cover for superior breathability.
The back of the Osprey has a mesh cover for superior breathability.
The waistband on the Osprey has two pockets, is easy to adjust and...
The waistband on the Osprey has two pockets, is easy to adjust and has an internal structure for better support and fit.

The Osprey has a back pad with breathable mesh fabric and some padded sections for comfort (above left). The waistband is padded (above right) with a stiff structure that provides great support and distribution of the weight of the pack. Some testers feel the waistband is the best in the group offering increased comfort, while others think the band digs in no matter how it is adjusted. It has a forward pull movement and an extra section that extends the rigid piece of the belt.

The padded shoulder straps on the Osprey have on the go adjustment...
The padded shoulder straps on the Osprey have on the go adjustment straps that are easy to pull.
The front chest clip of the Osprey helps draw the shoulder straps in...
The front chest clip of the Osprey helps draw the shoulder straps in for added comfort and for getting baby closer to your back.

The shoulder straps (above left) are comfortable, stable, and easy to adjust on the go. They are soft but stiff conforming to the user with a chest clip (above right) that pulls the straps toward one another for comfort and customization of the fit.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the torso adjustment for the osprey is behind the back mesh. it has...
The torso adjustment for the Osprey is behind the back mesh. It has 6 inches of range for a better fit for most users.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The Osprey has an adjustable torso with a 6-inch range. When combined with the other adjustable components, this helps create a custom fit for most users.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the osprey provides a comfortable riding experience for little ones...
The Osprey provides a comfortable riding experience for little ones compared to the competition.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Child Comfort


The Osprey is one of the best in the group when it comes to child comfort and features designed to make little ones ride more enjoyable and cozy.


Child comfort is important because it can be the difference between a long enjoyable adventure and a short uncomfortable one.

The cockpit on the osprey has a side closure that is color-coded and...
The cockpit on the osprey has a side closure that is color-coded and creates a snug and secure feeling seating area.
The Osprey has adjustable stirrup straps.
The Osprey has adjustable stirrup straps.

The cockpit on the Osprey is snug and secure without feeling wide open and floppy. The sides open and close with a simple buckle (above left) and can be tightened or loosened for comfort and the pack also has height adjustable stirrups.

The face rest on the Osprey is somewhat angled for a more...
The face rest on the Osprey is somewhat angled for a more comfortable napping experience. The harness is well padded and stretches somewhat for a better fit.
The face rest or drool pad can be removed for easier cleaning.
The face rest or drool pad can be removed for easier cleaning.

The headrest on the Osprey is perfect for napping with a slight angle that helps little ones get cozy when they fall asleep. The frame under the pad curves out for additional support and the pad is soft and removable for washing off the inevitable drool.

The Osprey harness height adjusts by a simple sliding mechanism on...
The Osprey harness height adjusts by a simple sliding mechanism on the back.
The Osprey harness is super cool with padding and an adjustable...
The Osprey harness is super cool with padding and an adjustable front clip with a padded back.

The seat pad (above left) on the Osprey is height adjustable and moves up and down with the baby in the seat. The padding is very firm but comfortable and is fleece-covered for a soft feel. The pad has more structure than some and supports the baby without folding. The 5-point harness (above right) has soft fabric that runs under the armpit and stretches to adjust for size. The Osprey has stirrups that are adaptable for height.

The canopy on the Osprey has mesh sides for increased visibility but...
The canopy on the Osprey has mesh sides for increased visibility but it still offers sun and wind protection.
The front of the Osprey canopy has a red slider that fits in the...
The front of the Osprey canopy has a red slider that fits in the pocket for easy setup.

The Osprey has a canopy with mesh sides (above left), it stores in a pocket on top, and connects on the front (above right) with legs that slide into color-coded pockets.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the osprey earned one of the highest scores for ease of use with...
The Osprey earned one of the highest scores for ease of use with color-coded adjustment points and strategically placed features.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Use


The Osprey earned one of the highest scores in the group for ease of use even if the number isn't the highest.


The Osprey has color-coded adjustment points and well-placed features that make it easy to use. The adjustments for comfort and fit work well and many of them can be used while wearing the pack or with a baby in the cockpit.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the kickstand on the osprey lets it sit on fairly uneven surfaces...
The kickstand on the Osprey lets it sit on fairly uneven surfaces with ease.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The kickstand on this pack works well and creates a sturdy base for taking the pack off though little ones should not be left unattended in any pack to avoid them pushing up and tipping the pack over.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - with an adjustable waistband, shoulder straps, torso and cockpit...
With an adjustable waistband, shoulder straps, torso and cockpit closure the Osprey is easy to use and provides a somewhat customized experience.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Given the number of straps and buckles, it can take some time to sort out what each feature does and how to use them. However, once you familiarize yourself with the Osprey it is easier to use than most of the competition.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the osprey has two handles for easy carrying.
The Osprey has two handles for easy carrying.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

This pack has dual carry handles on the front and back that are nicely placed and feel rugged. The pack can be carried or hung from the handles.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - most of the storage on the osprey is located on the back of the pack...
Most of the storage on the Osprey is located on the back of the pack and out of reach of the user.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Storage


The Osprey has plenty of storage compared to the competition with only a handful of options offering more.


With a variety of pockets inside and out, there is a place for almost anything you need to stow.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the main storage compartment on the osprey has a wide mouth opening...
The main storage compartment on the Osprey has a wide mouth opening for easier use.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The main storage pocket opens wide and is attached to the kickstand, so if you fold the stand, then you lose some of the available space. It is a little harder to access because the zipper is hidden under a flap but it is big enough to stow jackets, snacks, diapers, wipes and water bottles.

The top pocket on the Osprey has a wide zipper and internal pockets...
The top pocket on the Osprey has a wide zipper and internal pockets for easy storage.
The top pocket on the Osprey has an internal pocket that makes...
The top pocket on the Osprey has an internal pocket that makes organizing your supplies easier.

The top pocket (above left) is smaller than the bottom but the zipper runs across the top and sides for easy access. It has a pocket within the pocket (above right) for better organizing and keeping important items within quick reach.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the canopy is stored in a top pocket of the osprey where it can be...
The canopy is stored in a top pocket of the Osprey where it can be deployed easily for use.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The canopy stores in the top pocket where it requires a hard tug to remove, but it slides back in without difficulty. The canopy provides good protection from the elements and is one of the best we've seen.

osprey poco plus baby backpack review - the osprey waistband has a zippered pocket that will hold most...
The Osprey waistband has a zippered pocket that will hold most average sized smartphones.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The Osprey has two waistband pockets and both have zipper closures. The pocket on the left zips straight across and contains a pouch with a mirror in it and a secure key clip; this pocket also fits some small snacks. The right-side pocket zips across the top and down the side making it large enough for a medium-sized smartphone or two granola bars.

The back of the Osprey has a flat open pocket good for storing maps...
The back of the Osprey has a flat open pocket good for storing maps and other thin items.
The Osprey has an open side pocket that will hold smaller items, but...
The Osprey has an open side pocket that will hold smaller items, but they can fall out because it doesn't close.

The Osprey also offers several flat open pockets for smaller quick access items that don't need to be secured. The pocket on the back (above left) is deep and big enough for a few diapers, wipes and maps. The open side pockets (above right) can store granola bars and other small snacks or a child-sized water bottle. They aren't tall enough for a taller water bottle, and the open-top means you shouldn't use them for valuables. There is also a small mesh pocket on the shoulder strap. This pocket may be useful for a bar or small phone, but nothing more substantial will fit.

Manufacturer Video



Juliet Spurrier, MD & Wendy Schmitz
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