Kayak and Canoe Loading SystemsPeter Fazzini
Best ways to load a water-craft onto your vehicle roof
Kayaking and canoeing, as a recreational sport is becoming more popular, so at the end of a hard day paddling or fishing, let’s make it easier to get the craft on the roof, and get you back on the road.
Options for loading a kayak can be performed from the either the side of the vehicle, or from the rear of the vehicle, refer to below for some popular options:
Keep in mind:
- the self-weight of the kayak
- what strength ability you have to lift this kayak
- what height your roof racks are from the ground
- your load carrying capacity of your roof racks
Thule Hullavator Pro 898AU. This is the top of the range, best system on the market. IT Is a gas strutted assisted lifter that drops down the side of the car to help you get your craft up on the roof and back down again. Perfect for those with heavy craft (up to 35kg), for people who have had shoulder reconstruction/surgery and anyone else who needs a hand. (Not suitable for low family sedan type vehicles and high work vans. This fitment will need specific types of bars with certain overhang dimension)
Rhino Rack NKL. This lifter is a complete system for easily loading and unloading kayaks. It is the only one in the market that has an 80kg load capacity, does not require any heavy lifting and a single person can operate it using the included hand winch. The ramps are designed to unclip quickly and are stored on the roof of your vehicle beside your kayak when not in operation.
Rhino Rack RUSL. A simpler more efficient system is a universal side loader, that simply clips onto overhang type bars (certain brands), extends your cross bar width, and in this instance you will need to be able to lift half the weight of the kayak onto this unit and then walk around the rear of the and load the kayak onto the roof.
Rhino Rack 580. Cradles that form the shape of the kayak can also help with the loading. You will need to lift the kayak to roof rack height to use side loader. Compatible with all current roof rack systems that feature a top bar channel. These stylish, low profile cradles are simple to use and the perfect loading system for your kayak and canoes, provided you are able to lift the kayak to your roof rack height, comes with four tie down straps.
For more side loading options “click here”
Yakima SweetRoll is probably the best unit currently on the market. With the inbuilt rollers on the rear cradles it makes it super easy to load for any kayak or canoe up to 36kg. Just lift the front of the craft onto the rear roller, then lift the rear and roll away! It also comes with front and rear tie downs as well as another set of tie downs to secure craft to the cradles.
Yakima ShowBoat 66 This unit works extremely well on cars/4wd that have a large spoiler on the back or are just too high to easily get the craft on. It basically consists of a large roller that can be extended out the back of the car.
Rhino Rack T loader T-Load Hitch Mount allows you to easily load your kayak, canoe and other long loads onto your vehicle. Simply lower the T-Load using it as a leverage to load your kayak/canoe, as you lift the rear end of the crafty, you push forward to begin loading, actually only controlling approx. half the weight.
Rhino Rack 581 Complete with two front santoprene rubber pads designed to cushion your kayak and two rear spring loaded felt covered pads for ease of rear mounting. Simple to use and the perfect loading system for your kayak and canoes, provided you are able to lift the kayak to your roof rack height, comes with four tie down straps.
For more rear loading options “click here”
Not all these systems are compatible with your roof racks, so please ring our dedicated staff or visit relevant web sites. It is necessary to tie your kayak down onto your roof racks and use non-stretch straps front and back to secure your load while travelling. Do not overload your roof racks, do not exceed the carrying capacity of your roof racks and vehicle roof capacity.