Kelty Journey 2.0 Review – Is It An Improvement?


Kelty Journey 2.0 Customer Rating: 4/4 – 100%Journey 2.0 Kelty Child Carrier 5 Star Rating

Kelty Journey 2.0 Review

Kelty Journey 2.0 Child Carrier – Rio Red

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Highlights:

  • Lightweight aluminum frame – weighs 7lbs 2 oz
  • Patented auto-deploy kickstand – deploys when shoulder straps are loosened
  • No-pinch hinges on kickstand
  • Height adjustable padded seat
  • 5-point child safety harness
  • Easy access leg loops
  • Kelty sun hood included
  • Hydration pack compartment
  • Padded, curved shoulder straps with mesh lining
  • Sternum strap
  • Contoured waist belt, double padded with mesh lining
  • Padded and mesh lined back panel
  • Sliding torso-length adjuster
  • Load-lifter straps help position the load
  • Carry/lift handles
  • Removable, washable chin pad
  • Large zippered storage pocket on top
  • Large under-seat storage pocket
  • Waist-belt storage
  • Waist-belt easy access water bottle pocket
  • Weight Capacity: 50 pounds, includes both child and gear

Kelty Journey 2.0 Review:

Kelty Journey 2.0 Review - Blue - Front and Back ViewThe Kelty Journey 2.0 is the new and improved version of the Kelty FC 2.0. It offers all of the same features that we’ve come to love, as well as a few extra’s.

You still get the patented auto-deploy kickstand that pops out automatically when you loosen the shoulder straps, and likewise collapses when you tighten them. You still get the V-Bar structured cockpit, aka the roll cage, as well as the easy-to-use torso height adjuster. The shoulder straps are still curved and padded, plus they’re lined with air mesh for breath-ability. And you still get two layers of padding in the waist belt.

With the new Kelty Journey 2.0 you also get a new and improved child safety harness with easy access leg loops and buckles at the shoulders. Kelty’s signature rain/sun hood now comes with it automatically without any additional purchase, and you now get hydration pack storage and an easy-access water bottle holder on the waist belt.

All of these improvements have basically taken the Kelty Journey 2.0 up a few notches. It’s no longer just a basic child carrier, it’s a full featured child carrier with a ton of storage. It offers up to 1300 cubic inches of storage, and can hold up to 50 pounds maximum load weight.

What I Love:

Kelty Journey 2.0 Review - Evergreen - Side viewI’ve always loved the auto-deploy kickstands, and Kelty is the only one that offers them. They are a huge convenience. Most child carriers offer locking kickstand, which are great for stability, but they can be a huge pain to operate solo. Not the Kelty Journey 2.0! Lift, load, and GO!

The hydration pack storage compartment is a huge plus, and anybody that plans on going the distance will agree. Having to pack a bunch of water bottles not only takes up precious room, but it also weighs you down.

The new child safety harness on the Kelty Journey 2.0 is well designed. I like the easy access leg loops, and the shoulder buckles are ingenious. Some child carriers offer harness’s that are a lot like the ones you find on a car seat. You have to buckle everything in down by the navel. This can be a pain, especially when you have limited space to work in. This new child safety harness keeps you from having to dig for straps or buckles, huge bonus!Kelty Journey 2.0 Review - Waist Belt with easy-access water bottle holder

They should have called the new water bottle pocket a sippey cup holder! I can’t tell you how many times I wished that my child carrier had a holder there. The pockets in the back are just too hard to reach, not only for you but also for your little one.

The design of the Kelty Journey 2.0 cockpit is probably one of the best I’ve seen. The V-Bar structure actually keeps it from collapsing. Let’s say you’re out for a hike with your little one, you slip and fall on your back, the V-Bar structure will keep your child from getting squished.Kelty Journey 2.0 Review - Roll Cage

Like I said, the Kelty Journey 2.0 offers 1300 cubic inches of storage, which is more than most. For instance, the Deuter Kid Comfort III, which is actually considered to be a deluxe child carrier, only offers 1200 cubic inches of storage.

What I Don’t Like:

Honestly, there really isn’t anything that I don’t like about the Kelty Journey 2.0. The old FC 2.0 had a few issues that bothered me, and I was worried that those same problems would transfer over with the new design, but they didn’t.

The torso-height adjuster used to slip after minimal wear and tear. The new one on the Kelty Journey 2.0 is sturdier, so no slipping.

Kelty Journey 2.0 Review Image - REI Customer ReviewThey also added about an inch more to the torso fit range, which was another common complaint with the old one. It just didn’t quite fit smaller frames very well. The new Kelty Journey 2.0 is supposed to fit smaller frames better, and larger frames just as good. We’ll see.

I also used to complain about having to purchase a sunshade separately, and now you don’t have to. It’s almost like they read my review on the old Kelty FC 2.0 and decided to fix everything.

The only thing that bugs me is the price. I’m not saying that the Kelty Journey 2.0 isn’t worth it’s price tag, because I honestly feel that it is. It’s just that  the old FC 2.0 used to be the child carrier that I recommended to someone looking for a very basic design that was extremely affordable.  Now, with all of the added features and improvements, the Kelty Journey 2.0 is in a new category. It’s no longer considered basic, it’s full-featured, which means there’s also a lot more competition.

Conclusion:

The Kelty Journey 2.0 is definitely improved! If I had to choose between it, and other child carriers in the same price range, it would be a tough decision.

You see, I really like the dual foot stirrups on the Osprey Poco Plus, and I’m in love with the Vari-Flex waist belt on the Deuter Kid Comfort II. Both of these child carriers list for about the same price. Also, the next step up from the Journey would be the Kelty Pathfinder 3.0. It offers a detachable daypack and it normally runs for about fifty dollars more, but when it’s on sale it costs about the same. That’s some tough competition!

The Kelty Journey 2.0 definitely has its advantages, like the auto-deploy kickstand, the 1300 cubic inches of storage, and the V-Bar structured cockpit. It’s also extremely comfortable for the wearer and passenger alike. In the end, it would probably depend on the price. When it’s on sale, it’s an excellent choice, when it’s not, my eyes wander.

Where to Buy:

Still undecided? Check out the video demo below.

Video Demonstration:

Get the Kelty Journey 2.0 Child Carrier @ Amazon – BEST Price!

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