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I bought this stroller from Babies R Us in December 2005. At the time I needed a lightweight stroller due to my 6 month old daughter having grown out of her travel system car seat and the Graco buggy being too heavy to drag in and out of the boot every day during the school run.
Whilst in Babies R Us we saw the Bruin Alpine Stroller. Its style appealed to me and I was even more impressed when I saw the price.
It was originally £69.99 but this particular day it had £10 off so was £59.99 and we also had a voucher for £5 off any stroller over £30 so the final price was £54.99. Bargain.
CAN YOU BUY IT ONLINE?
Yes you can buy it online from the Babies R Us website. If you go to babiesrus.co.uk go to travel, then find pushchairs and on page 2 you should find the Alpine. You can also order it via their catalogue through mail order. Due to this being made by Bruin it is a Babies R Us / Toys R Us own brand so is not available anywhere else as far as I am aware.
WHAT DID YOU GET FOR THE PRICE?
Included in the price was the stroller (obviously), the hood (which I'll go into more detail about later), rain cover, shopping basket and the offer at the time was also a free matching footmuff.
HOW LIGHT / HEAVY IS IT?
It is 7kg which means it is very light to lift in and out of the car boot one handed using the carry strap on the side of the stroller.
HOW BIG IS IT ONCE FOLDED?
I do not have the exact dimensions but it folds down very well. I have a Rover 414 Hatchback and even with my big Graco travel system buggy in the boot and I can still fit this stroller into the boot also. This stroller has an umbrella fold.
To fold the stroller you need to push a clip down at the back on the side with your foot then push up on another part using your foot and the stroller is released. In order to open the stroller you just need to unclip the side arm and pull the stroller into position then push down on the lever at the back.
Once the stroller is folded there is a clip at the side that automatically locks the buggy together so it is all very easy to do one handed. You then can just pick it up by the carry strap and out it in the boot of your car.
The only problem I had with folding it was when the foot muff is still attached - it isn't so easy to fold down. I usually unzipped the footmuff cover first and removed this before folding. Obviously if I didn't have time then I would fold the stroller with the footmuff in place but this meant that the clip wouldn't make contact with the other bar on the stroller so it wouldn't be kept closed.
The hood has an observation window on the top. To access this you just undo the toggle and pull back the flap. The flap can then be rolled up and the toggle done up again to hold it in place. At the back of the hood is a zipped pocked which is fantastic. I found it incredibly useful for my mobile phone, car keys or water beaker. I've never had it on any other stroller I've had so this was a great simple addition to a stroller. The hood can also be unclipped and wiped over very easily.
This raincover is probably the easiest raincover I've ever had to put on a buggy. You unfold it, put the lipped part over the edge of the hood and then fasten the poppers on the side of the hood and round the legs near the wheels. That's all there is too it! Brilliantly fast to put on and useful on windy days as well as rainy one's.
THE SHOPPING BASKET
There is quite a bit of room in the shopping basket and for a stroller it is a nice size. This too comes as standard with the stroller.
This came free when we bought the stroller and is advertised in Babies R Us catalogue as being free when you buy the Alpine stroller. It retails at £29.99 otherwise which I do think is rather expensive. The footmuff is fleece lined and very cosy. The top bit zips off fully to leave a warm summer liner which is very useful as it protects the actual stroller seat, keeping it clean for longer
THE STROLLER ITSELF
The stroller is suitable from birth as it lies back completely flat. Once it is in the fully reclined position it is very enclosed and snug for a newborn. The seat has 5 seat positions but it doesn't actually sit completely bolt upright which is the one major problem I've had with this stroller. My daughter is now 9 months and always wants to lean forward and she pushes on the frame with her elbows in order to push herself forward. This is all rather irritating for her so we have had to buy a new buggy because of this. The stroller should go up to 4 years of age. I aksed my 6 year old to sit in it and as daft as he looked, the buggy remained sturdy and I could push my son around in it. The seat has a 5 point harness so it has the crotch strap, 2 waist straps and 2 shoulder straps.
The handles are an ergonomic sporty design and are foam covered. They are nice to hold and the buggy is very easy to move around. The front wheels are lockable swivel wheels and they have a chunky tread to them. I really like the wheels as I find some wheels on certain strollers are very small - but these wheels are not so small.
The leg rest is adjustable so you can have it in a horizontal position for younger babies. This is something I have not had on any other stroller or travel system buggy and I have found it to be very useful.
The brake is easy to apply. You can press down on the button on either rear wheel to put the brake on. It is sturdy and I have not found any problems with it. To take the brake off you just lift the button with your foot.
I bought the Alpine in the 'surf' design but from April 2006 they are bringing out 'Seville'. Surf is navy blue with pastel blue trim and pastel blue inners on the wheels. Seville is cream and black.
Generally this is a lovely stroller. It maneouver's well and is light and stylish. The extra features like the pocket in the back of the hood and the adjustable leg rest make this a great stroller and it is a very reasonable price if looking for a lightweight, easy to use buggy for a newborn. The seat is easy to hoover out but I imagine the seat would be difficult to sponge down as you can't always get into all the nooks and crannys.
The downfall for this buggy was the fact that my Daughter is very nosey and likes to see everything. Had she not been so nosey, I definitely would not have replaced this with a new stroller.