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How to transport a kayak securely on the road – A Complete Guide

Kayak is a popular sport as well as recreational activity, and with the summer approaching, many people will be taking their kayak to the sea, hence the need to know how to transport a kayak securely and safely is paramount.

how to transport a kayak

Transporting kayak can be a tricky task as you have to consider your means of transporting the kayak, how not to damage the kayak or your vehicle. You also have to consider the fact that the kayak might fall off the highway which might lead to an accident.

When considering traveling with your kayak, you have to make sure:

  • You do not damage your kayak.
  • You do not damage the roof of your vehicle (if using a vehicle’s roof)
  • And you should try as much possible to prevent any form of accident from occurring on the highway. This is achieved by properly fastening your kayak to the roof of your vehicle.

The means of transporting your kayak is another issue that should be considered. Well, if you have a truck, it will be much easier. The fact is, most people have smaller cars so the best option is to transport the kayak using their car.


Now before you venture on that holiday with your family and friends for a kayak cruise on the nearest lake and river, you have to make sure you have all that will enable you to secure your kayak properly. You can watch the following youtube video on how to secure your kayak on the roof of your car.

It is easier to transport a kayak on a car that comes with factory rack since you can easily tie down the kayak with a rope over the roof rack. If you decide to use a rope, it mighty get tricky especially if you cannot tie a proper knot on a rope. You can learn how to tie a proper hitch knot that will hold down the kayak properly watching this video on youtube

how to transport a kayak

You can as well use a cam strap to fasten your kayak on your roof rack, cam strap is easier to use as you can easily tie it and remove it unlike trying to tie a rope knot.

how to transport a kayak

Transporting your kayak can be complicated depending on the type of car you have, as some come with a rack and some without a rack.


There are cars that do not come with a rack from the factory and this can pose a problem for transporting your kayak. However, some people do transport the kayak by falling down the rear seat as the kayak extends outward behind the car. This is only suitable for transporting your kayak over a short distance and it still pose the risk of the kayak falling over during the trip.

If you intend travelling a considerable distance, then you should consider getting a rack system installed on your car, as they are readily available. You can install foam and strap system on your car as a temporary rack system, which involves getting a strap that circles the inside of your car and over the top of the car attached to foam padding. You should do this at both end of the roof, as the kayak will be strapped at the rising end for proper friction and stability.

Installing a rack on a car and transporting kayak in it can cause some damage to the car roof as well as your kayak. Thus proper care must be taken in mounting the kayak on the car and you should be mindful of your speed so the rack system don’t fall off. This method is suitable for transporting only a single kayak as they will be unstable for carrying more than a kayak.

There are some other rack systems you can purchase and install on the roof of your car at .austinkayak where they have a variety of options you can choose from, and that are suitable for carrying more than a single kayak.


It is easy transporting your kayak if you have a truck as it will provide more room for your kayak at the back of your truck and it will not have to damage your roof top. I have known of people that go to rent a truck for the purpose of transporting their kayak when going for kayaking, especially if you have to carry more than one kayak. This will be a great option if you can afford a rental fee.

how to transport a kayak

However, there are some measures you have to consider when transporting your kayak on the truck bed of your truck:

  • You have to make sure they are fastening tightly so that they do not get to move and hit the walls of the truck when moving.
  • You should ensure the tail of your kayak is placed in a way they will not be damage or fall off causing accident.
  • ​When transporting multiple kayak, ensure that you have a bar to keep them from falling apart or hitting each other.
  • You should also consider lining the bed of your truck with soft foam as you strap in your kayak to prevent damage to your truck bed and your kayak.
how to transport a kayak


You have that 16 foot kayak you want to go on the sea with and you having some issue transporting it. Well you have to consider using a truck as you can leave the tailgate hanging out, with some signal such as a flag for vehicle behind you. You might also decide to get an extension so that the tailgate does not hang out as most people prefer.

A truck extension is, however, safer and stable, and it will be less damaging to the truck and the kayak.

Kayak is becoming a common hobby among friends and family, and so you come across people transporting more than a kayak in a car or truck. While the truck will have much space to accommodate more than one kayak without damage to the kayak or the truck, transporting more than one in a car is risky.

However they are some products available that you will use to place more than one kayak safely on a car. You can check out yakima as they have some product and offers solutions to some issues involving transporting kayak.

Ogochukwu Ochelli

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