April 2, 2004

Strollers for Walk-ups

If there's more than one flight of stairs between you and the outside world--whether in a house, an apartment building, or a subway station--you'll need to face facts: stroller size matters.
Maclaren Quest stroller, in denim, image:amazon.comAnd stroller weight matters even more; 13 lbs seems like the consensus maximum for strollers for walk-up apartment dwellers. If you're feeling all tough, like 13 lbs ain't nothin', add a 10+ lb baby and a bunch of gear, then imagine your sweet wife hauling that thing up the stairs in August.

So, here are two above-average stroller models that you could walk up and down stairs with:

Peg Perego's Aria, in Black from Babies R Us also accommodates the PP Primo Viaggio car seat. Weight: 16.5 lbs.

McClaren's Quest is at Babies R Us in denim [image left], but should come in other colors, too. It's Maclaren's lightest full-feature stroller (the Volo is lighter, but is pretty stripped down.)

Update: See the comments for discussion of the 11 lb Maclaren Triumph, which is lighter than the Quest and beats it "six ways till Sunday."

Coming soon: Strollers for Walking Over To Your SUV


A caveat to your post: once the kid is old enough to sit up and doesn't need to lie totally flat in the stroller (around 10-11 mos with my daughter) the Maclaren Triumph has the Quest beat six ways to sunday.

Not only is it lighter (a paltry 11 lbs) than the Quest, but it's flat-out the coolest stroller I've ever used. My wife and I had the Graco MetroLite travel system at first, and live in a 3rd-floor walkup in Brooklyn, *and* take the subway on a daily basis. Although I'm capable of hefting the metrolite up and down subway steps without folding it, while it's loaded with bags, it was hell on my back.

With the Triumph, I just carry the diaper bag (not hard to adjust to) instead of stowing it under the seat. When I have to go up or down stairs, I take Leilani out, hold her in one arm (or let her stand, now that she's almost 2), fold the stroller with one hand (and a foot), throw it over my shoulder, and walk down the stairs.

If you get your Metrocard out first, you don't even have to use the "special access" gates.

Plus, (though they've changed the fabrics now), we were one of the first people in New York to get it, and got the first wave of them: in bright crimson red, with a reflective racing stripe down the middle of the seat. My daughter loves it, and for once, this middle-class couple from Brooklyn had a stroller nobody else in the city had (although it's quite common now).

Thanks for the first-hand account. I found this link to the Triumph at barebabies.com, which still comes in red, as well as navy, which is at Babies R Us. Looks cool.

I'll do a more detailed post on it later, probably as a Volo/Triumph comparison.

Agreed on the merits of the Triumph. My wife and I have one, and it's great. We live in the suburbs now and don't use the stroller that often, since our 2 1/2-year-old is a good walker, but it's very easy to fold and unfold for trips to the mall, etc. And it takes up very little space in the back of our (compact) SUV.

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