Kayaking is becoming increasingly popular with it offering a way of getting back to nature and exercising. These two factors are just a couple of reasons why so many people are ready to throw their kayak onto their vehicle and go out on their next water adventure. But, before you do this, there are some things you need to consider when transporting your kayak safely. The last thing you want is to arrive at your favorite spot and find that your kayak is damaged.
Choosing the Best Kayak Racks
There are many kayak racks to choose from, with each one having specific benefits. The most significant factors are the distance, the vehicle’s make, model if there is anything preinstalled on the roof and the time you want to spend. These factors will decide what kind you select, the accessories you’ll need, any future additions you may be able to add, and more. With that in mind, there are a few things you’ll want to consider when planning your kayaking trip, and searching for kayak racks and other equipment. We’ve listed them below!
How far do you Plan on Going?
Any long-distance trip, where you are going at high speeds requires a kayak rack that is secure. In these situations, you want to go with something that does not use temporary pads and foam. They are difficult to keep in place and hold down when going through a variety of conditions and at different speeds. In these types of situations, you want to think about a rack with j-cradles or saddles to hold the kayak down. A j-cradle keeps the kayak in place at a 45-degree angle despite the wind and bumps along the road. Saddles are a type of stand that hugs the kayak to the roof using a series of brackets. Those who are going on shorter trips can use something with foam or temporary pads. They do not blow all over the place and are great for traveling short distances at lower speeds.
Type of Rack on the Vehicle
The next thing you must do is look at your vehicle to see what type of rack is installed. There are several possibilities including side rails, bare roof, factory side, and aftermarket crossbars that could already be installed on your vehicle. The side rails are installed by the factory and run from front to back with some flush against the roof and others slightly inclined. A bare roof does not have anything installed from the factory on the vehicle and it connects by attaching fasteners to the top of the doors. Factory sidebars go from the front to the back and are installed by the manufacturer on the vehicle. They are used as a base for the kayak rack using a crossbar kit and its accessories. Aftermarket crossbars go onto a specific make and model and come in a kit that is designed for the vehicle. After seeing the type of rack on the vehicle, it will help you to decide on what to buy.
Next, you want to think about how much time you will spend kayaking and loading/unloading it from your car. For those who plan on kayaking a lot, you may want to think about a rack with rollers on the back or front. It makes it easier to place the kayak onto and off the vehicle without lots of stress on your body or the kayak. In many cases, saddles and j-cradles are reasonable solutions and they simplify the process of loading and unloading your kayak. The last thing you want to do is become injured or damage your vehicle or kayak when mounting/dismounting the kayak from the vehicle.
Manta Racks Can Help You Decide!
There are many kayak racks available and choosing the right one requires thinking about your needs. Several areas to consider are the distance, type of vehicle, and the amount of time you will spend kayaking. These factors play a role in determining your needs and one that matches these preferences. Choosing the right kayak equipment can be a challenge, especially if you don’t know what to look for. With the help of the team here at Manta Racks, you’ll find exactly what you need for both your kayak and your vehicle!