Kayaking is an incredibly fun and rewarding activity that allows you to explore the great outdoors and get some exercise at the same time. However, transporting your kayak to your destination can be a bit of a challenge, especially if you don’t have a truck or a trailer. In this tutorial, we’ll go over how to transport your kayak on top of your car safely and securely.
Step 1: Choose the Right Kayak Rack
The first step is to choose the right kayak rack for your car. There are several types of kayak racks available, including J-cradles, saddles, stackers, and rollers.
J-cradles are the most popular type of kayak rack because they hold the kayak on its side, which saves space on your roof rack. Saddles hold the kayak upright and are best for longer kayaks. Stackers allow you to carry multiple kayaks on one roof rack, while rollers make it easy to load and unload your kayak.
Tip: Make sure that the kayak rack you choose is compatible with your car’s roof rack system.
Step 2: Install Your Kayak Rack
Once you have chosen the right kayak rack for your car, it’s time to install it. Most kayak racks come with detailed instructions that will guide you through the installation process. Make sure that you follow these instructions carefully and double-check that everything is secure before loading your kayak onto the roof.
Tip: If you’re not comfortable installing your own kayak rack, consider hiring a professional to do it for you.
Step 3: Load Your Kayak
Loading your kayak onto the roof of your car can be challenging if you’re doing it alone. Here’s how to do it:
1. Position yourself at the rear of your car. 2. Lift one end of the kayak onto the rear crossbar of the roof rack.
3. Walk to the other end of the kayak and lift it onto the front crossbar of the roof rack. 4. Make sure that the kayak is centered on the roof rack and that it’s secured in place.
Tip: It’s a good idea to use a kayak strap to secure your kayak to your roof rack for added safety.
Step 4: Drive Safely
Once your kayak is loaded onto your car, it’s important to drive safely. Remember that you have a large object on your roof, so be cautious when driving under low-hanging branches or through parking garages. Check your straps periodically during your trip to make sure that they’re still secure.
Tip: Consider using a bow and stern tie-down system to keep your kayak from shifting during transport.
Transporting a kayak on top of your car may seem daunting at first, but with the right equipment and a little bit of practice, it can be done safely and securely. Just remember to choose the right kayak rack for your car, install it properly, load your kayak carefully, and drive safely. With these tips in mind, you’ll be hitting the water in no time!