I've been fretting over what to do in regards to transporting Little One around the mountain on our visits to Wintergreen.
She's outgrown the Bjorn (and my bladder really couldn't take the pressure on it the last couple of times we tried it - thanks sweet pea for that little gift), and the strollers we have just aren't up to the terrain (the umbrella is too flimsy, the older-model Peg Perego too heavy), nor is my body up to pushing them or carrying her in my arms, nor is she up to doing so much walking yet.
What to do? What to do?
Some sort of carrier or all-terrain stroller was obviously in order, but which one, what kind?
After lots of discussions, DH and I ruled out an additional stroller as even an all-terrain model wouldn't be good on snow or mud, two regularly found conditions during the ski season.
That left a carrier of some sort. The decision on soft or frame came down to whether I could load Little One easily by myself. Frame won out. Then, what was available?
A little searching online, and it narrowed to a couple of brands. From there the question was which ones could I find in a store to actually try as all the reviews in the world can't tell you whether something will actually work for you or not. Luckily there's an REI on our way from home to the mountain and they carry both Kelty and Deuter carriers, and had both in stock.
To shorten a long enough narrative, the Kelty models were all on clearance, and REI members got a 30% discount on clearance items. The Deuter models did not get tried on (they were also more technical than we needed), and since Little One was getting a bit cranky it was a pretty quick trip in and out.
Based on one weekend's worth of use though, I can tell you that the Kelty 1.0 worked pretty darn well for both Little One and myself once I got it properly adjusted. She liked the ride, I liked not feeling like my arms were going to fall off, and my legs which are not used to hiking hills only complained a percentage more than they would have without an extra 25 pounds on my back. And the dog liked that she could go out with us.
Frame carrier for the WIN!