car topping double kayak

We are interested in purchasing a double sea kayak but are wondering about others experience lifting 90 lbs., and 22 feet of kayak ontop of a chev cavalier? We are informed it is possible to carry 22 feet of Kayak safely with a J type saddle on our car, but it seems there is quite a BIG overhang - just wondering what other’s thoughts are?


Shouldn’t be a problem if…

– Last Updated: Mar-28-06 4:10 AM EST –

...your rack system is strong and secure. Just be sure that you get a rack system that has been tested and approved by the rack manufacturer for that particular make/model of car. You can go to the Yakima and Thule sites and check to see if they have a system that they'd recommend for your particular make/model of car.

In terms of lifing the 90 lb. tandem boat onto the car, it shoudn't be a problem for two people. A basic "rule of thumb" for these small boats (kayaks and canoes) is that if a boat is meant to be paddled by one person, one person should be able to carry/portage the boat. A tandem boat should be managable with two people.

Finally, with any long boat being carried on top of your car, in addition to the straps securing the boat to the rack, you should also use both bow and stern lines attached to the car. If your rack system is solid (and rated to carry the weight), and you're using both the main straps and bow/stern lines, you should be just fine.


should be fine
your cavalier is what, 15 ft long? (22-15)/2= between 3 and 4 ft overhangs. it’ll be fine. I carry a 17+ footer on top of my 12 ft long firefly, overhang not an issue. just have a reasonably secure bow and stern tiedown. 90 lbs shouldnt be any problem for 2 people to manage, the overhangs are your friend because you don’t have to lean in over the hood/trunk when loading and unloading.

Cracked the gelcoat
on a VCP Aluet Sea II 22ft hauling in old school Thule saddles on a Honda. Hauling on J craddles using the beam strenght of the boat should be stronger and your gelcoat probably isn’t as thick so may not big a big deal.

Personally, I bought something more conducive to hauling boats. Now I have a 9ft bar spread from the first crossbar to the 4rth crossbar. (Crosswind, what crosswind?)

We have used our double (22-1/2 ft.) throughout the Northwest with a Toyota Highlander. I agree with bow and stern ropes when tranporting this large a kayak. I’ve had no problems when transporting in saddles or with a T-bar. Beware of strong winds and check your tie-down straps often on long trips. Our boat is only 75# and is easy to load for my wife/daughter and me…but, we’re tall.



Check Your Overhang
We are not allowed to have an overhang of greater than 3’ in NC. My 18’ yak overhangs a bit more than that in the rear when I place it with the same amount of boat for and aft of the bars. I have not had any issues but technically I could get a ticket loaded like this.


Overhang Question
In NC is that no more than 3’ without a flag, or no more than 3’ period? To the best of my recollection here in MD a load can extend up to 2’ without a flag but further (I don’t know the limit though I assume it exists) with a flag.

I’d Have to Check To Be Sure
But I believe that it is no more than 3 feet without a flag and permit.


Great to hear
that others have safely transported sea kayaks on cars. We’ll find out soon ourselves as we are excitedly waiting the arrival of our kayak - expect it to arrive this week. I’ll have to check out if we need a flag. thanx everybody for your expertise

prairiegal :slight_smile: