2003 Dakota Ext Cab Roof Rack

I just bought a 03 Dakota Club Cab. I will be loading a Penobscot 16, OT loon 138, or a Pygmy Osprey Triple (20’ long)

Any suggestions/experience outfitting your Dakota with a roof rack? Hitch mount goalpost rack? Ladder rack instead of a canoe/kayak rack?

Thank you in advance for your replies.


Customized ladder racks
Here’s how I did my 2002 Dakota.


With any bed setup, you’d get 6.5 feet of spread. But, you may need to consider a rear bed support, with a cab mounted bar, to get more spread for that 20 footer.

I have a 2000 Dakota Ext. Cab
… but I have a cap on the back. I use Yakima racks. Over the cab I have a Q-tower rack with 78" crossbars, and on the cap I have the yakima fake rain gutters installed so I use a 1A raingutter tower. I have a 9’ spread between the cab and back of the cap which works well with 14’ and longer boats. I also use this set up for my 12’ PlacidBoatworks Spitfire and it’s fine.

With an open back pickup I would use the Yakima Outdoorsman 300 with a Q-tower rack on the forward cab.

And I’m sorryy to hear you got a Dakota … :frowning:

or TracRac Pro

Mounting to a glass cap

– Last Updated: Mar-21-09 1:20 PM EST –

I have a glass cap on mine. Drilled through the top of the glass cap and then permanently bolted on the imitation Thule rain gutter plates. To those I mount the Thule legs meant for rain gutters. I've had three glass boats on it on several occasions with no issues.

I had a Dakota, regular cab. I built a
roll bar that was high enough to clear the cab completely.

I just traded my Dakota Quad Cab
I used a goalpoast and an inflatable Malone handirack on the cab it always worked fine. I did have to put a piece of foam between two boats.

Good luck


I’ve got a Chevy Colorado Crew Cab and I use a bar above the front doors and a Yakima Sportsman on the bed. It comes on and off pretty easily and I can adjust front to back depending on which boats I’m carrying. Call your Dodge guys to find out exactly where to position the front bar though. I understand it’s touchy on the longer rooflines where the load rests.

2003 dakota quad cab

– Last Updated: Mar-22-09 10:01 AM EST –

we have a 2003 dakota quad cab

We installed the factory rack (drilling the first hole is the hardest part)

And then purchased a yakima rack that attaches to the pickup bed side rails.

With malone wings on the front cross piece and on the yakima rack, the boats are tied down right at the front and rear bulkheads 18 foot boats (q700 & prijon kodiaks)

With the saddles spaced so far apart there is no side torque to speak of. And the boats are centered on the truck with little overhang.

Two 7000 mile round trips up to the yukon territory + 20 to 50 mile trips every weekend since 2004. (I average 80mph on the highways)We've been very happy with the system.