I've been poking around this site since early spring, but this is my first post.
I originally came here looking for child carrier options for my daughter now 2 yrs. old (but I ended up spending most of my time in the Commuter forum). Anyway, in an effort to contribute to the site, I thought I'd post what I settled on.
My wife and I ended up purchasing a Co-Rider seat. It's an english saddle type affair that mounts to the top tube of the bicycle and allows the child to ride in front of you with an un-obstructed view (that's what we liked most about it). It also has little "mini" handlebars that mount to the handlebars on the bicycle for the child to hold on to. In addition, there are some rather stout foot guards that appear, so far, to do a good job in keeping the childs feet out of the front tire/fork area.
The main reason we went this way was that we both thought this seat would aid in keeping my daughter involved in the rides we went on. She can see everything, feels the wind on her face (bugs too), is easy to talk to while we're riding, and she gets to "steer" too. In short, we didn't want her to get bored staring at daddy's back.
So far, she loves the seat and looks forward to our rides. From my wife's and my standpoint, my daughter isn't in the way. Your natural riding position for us keeps you from bumping heads with her and your controls are easily reached (mountain bike and a comfort bike).
The only bummer so far is that like most seats that I know of, you only get one mounting bracket. There's a rather large height difference between my wife and I, so using the same bicycle isn't really an option. Right now I have to move everything between bikes if we go on seperate rides. I e-mailed the distributor in the US and they are bending over backwards to set me up with an additional mounting bracket and another set of mini handlebars.
My wife, daughter and I all really like the seat/carrier and are happy with the purchase. We get alot of interest from others while we are on the trails too.
Anyway, just wanted to throw a little input out there in case someone else is looking for a child carrier like I was earlier this spring. It's another option available to you and it's a little un-conventional from what I would normally think about looking for in a child carrier.
I'm not sure if the forum rules prohibit website links for sales or not, but I think this is obscure enough that it would be helpful for other members to post it here. I am not involved with the company other than being a satisfied customer because of one purchase.
The website for the US distributor is: www.co-ride.com