How to Transport Canoe Without Roof Rack

We're an affiliate. "We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, when you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.. Thank you if you use our links, we really appreciate it!"


How You Can Transport A Canoe Without A Roof Rack

Having your own canoe can be a lot of fun. It’s great to be able to bring the boat to nearby lakes, rivers, and ponds so that you can enjoy time on the water. However, if you don’t have a roof rack, getting your canoe from one place to another can be a bit of a challenge.

Tying down a canoe to the roof of your vehicle might not be easy, but it’s not impossible either. Follow these suggestions, and you’ll be able to get your canoe to where you’re going.

2.Transport Your Canoe While It’s Upside Down

You never want to transport your canoe when it’s right-side up. If it rains or storms while you’re taking your canoe from one point to the next, your canoe could wind up getting filled with water. You should make sure that your canoe is upside down when you secure it to your roof.

Placing your canoe upside down will also make it easier for you to get it into a secure position. While your canoe is going to be right side up when it’s in use, it should always be upside down when it’s being transported. This is the proper way to secure a canoe.

2.Invest In Foam Pad Racks

Roof racks can be pretty expensive, which is why a lot of people don’t want to purchase them for their car. It can also be difficult to remove a roof rack from your vehicle. A lot of people don’t have to drive around with a rack attached to their vehicle at all times.

Thankfully, there’s a cheap and easy alternative to a full roof rack: foam pad racks. These racks are very affordable, and they work quite well. They’re easy to use whenever you need to transport your canoe. Foam racks will keep both your canoe and your vehicle from getting scratched up when your canoe is being transported.

3.Tie Down Your Canoe Securely

You’re going to want to use either rope or twine when you’re securing your canoe to your vehicle. You should make sure that your canoe is completely secure before you start driving. It’s better to use more rope than you think you need to. After all, you’d rather be safe or sorry when it comes to your canoe.

When you’re tying a canoe down, using the right kinds of knots is going to be essential. If you have a lot of experience with knots, then you already know what you need to be doing. If you’re not all that familiar with knots, you’ll want to learn trucker’s knots. This is ideal for securing something heavy like a canoe.

If you’re looking for a solution that’s even more secure than rope and twine, you should invest in straps that have cam buckles. It’s best to use four straps in total. You’ll want two of the straps to be placed around the hull of the canoe, while the other two straps you have will help to secure the ends of the canoe.

Another simple yet effective option is to use bungee cords along with rope or twine. Even though these cords shouldn’t be used as your primary tie-down tool, they can give you a little more security when you’re securing your boat.

4.Consider Netting

While placing your canoe upside down will help to protect it from debris, it’s still possible that your canoe will be damaged during transport. You can get an extra level of protection if you use some sort of netting.

It’s easy to place netting over your canoe, and it can provide an extra level of security. Using netting can also ensure that people aren’t able to clearly see the canoe on top of your vehicle when your car is parked.

5.Make Sure You Have A Helping Hand

It isn’t going to be easy for you to get your canoe on top of your car and keep it there while it’s being tied down. That’s why you’ll want to enlist someone else that will be able to help you. If you have an assistant on hand, you should have very few issues while securing your boat.

When you have someone there to help you, you’ll be able to use a two-person lift when you are placing your canoe on top of your vehicle. You’ll also have someone there to make sure that your canoe stays completely secure while it is being tied down. Having an extra set of hands can make a huge difference.

6.Securing Your Canoe When You’re On Your Own

If you don’t have anyone there to help you, getting your canoe secure is going to be a lot harder. Thankfully, this isn’t an impossible process. If you’re trying to secure your canoe while you’re on your own, you are going to want to follow the steps below.

To start, you’ll want to stand in between your canoe and your vehicle. You should lift the bow of the canoe in the air while keeping the stern of the canoe on the ground. From there, you should swing the bow of your vehicle so that you can place your boat on the roof of the vehicle. Lift the stern in the air, resting the weight of the canoe on your vehicle. Once both sides of the boat are on the canoe, you will want to center it in place before you start tying it down.

Since you won’t have anyone on hand to help you keep your canoe steady, you might want to quickly secure the canoe with bungee cords. That way, you won’t have to worry about your canoe slipping or falling while it is being tied in place.

Now that you know how to transport a canoe without a roof rack, you’ll be able to get more use out of your boat. Even if your canoe is on the larger side, you should be able to strap it to the roof of your vehicle with minimal issues as long as you follow these tips.