Carry straps for sea kayaks

Does anyone make them ? All that I can find is the one that attaches to the cockpit rim. I don’t feel very good about that. I want one with similar design but to actualy be supported by looping around the hull then over the shoulder. Surely, someone is makeing these ? I have a cart but I think a carry strap can be more convenient and quicker.Can anyone steer me in the right derection, links, ect ?

Use your shoulder
and the cockpit rim …rests nicely on your PFD.

Danuu, a p-net sponsor makes one called the Yaksling:

I got one as a promo but only used it once. It’s hard to see how it is any easier than just putting the coaming on my shoulder. I converted mine into a kayak hanging rig for the garage.

I agree
I tried making a couple of slings myself and long ago concluded that the best way to safely carry a sit-inside boat solo is always going to be to have your shoulder inside the cockpit. It’s the only way to have the weight as close as possible over your center of gravity. Using a strap requires you to be seriously off balance and can put more strain on your body than the conventional cockpit carry. A sling makes more sense for a sit on top where you don’t have a cockpit to get inside and where the lower depth of the boat brings the weight closer to your body.

I’m a 61 year old woman, only 5’5" and have small shoulders, but I know how to use what strength I have to balance heavy loads. I don’t have a garage and have to carry my boats from the rear door of my walkout basement, uphill through the yard and up 6 steps to the street to the car. But with practice and my shoulder well inside the cockpit I can haul and load my heaviest kayak (60 lbs) solo on the roof of my Hyundai Santa Fe. It ain’t fun (and I curse the whole time) but I’ve never strained anything.

shoulder carry…
I would love to see how you do it (and maybe get a pointer or two on how I’m doing it wrong).

I’m about your size (ok, height-wise). I’ve never been able to put the kayak on my shoulder and transfer it to the roof rack. Not even close! (Nor do I see too many others of my size doing that, which kind of removed my motivation to try more)

My biggest problem is controlling the front end from swinging every which way and banging into the car and everything else around! :frowning:

Use something inside for a handle
Usually reach forward for a foot peg to use as a handle and steady it while carrying, the boat is slightly off center balance with more boat behind you than in front, that way and the bow rides high. Let it ride higher and ease it onto the rack …

it helps to get j-racks
J-racks make it easier to load the boat on the rack. You can angle the bow or stern in and then lift the boat up onto the other one.

I don’t like the straps!
All the weight of the boat ends up on your trapezius (sp?) muscle in your neck - very uncomfortable.

I don’t recommend them.

One shoulder carries don’t work for me
with anything over 35 lbs because of back and neck issues.

Either carrying it with the padded seat on my head or using the kayak portage yoke that clamps on the cockpit rim works better for me. The kayak portage yoke is much better for the neck and spine because the weight is on the shoulders just like when portaging a canoe with a yoke.

force of habit
I suppose my physical experience is kind of unique for an average sized female. I worked as a construction electrician through my 30’s so I learned to efficiently lift, center and balance long heavy loads (10’ bundles of steel conduit, 8 and 10’ heavy duty wooden ladders) and carry them long distances. I requires some practice and patience but it is surprising what you can maneuver once you get a feel for your center of balance under them. As has been explained, you have to find a fixed part within the cockpit to grasp with your hand. I also keep a small dense foam pillow to stick between my shoulder and the coaming for cushioning and to raise the load a little.

The best strategy is to find the lightest kayak you can afford (or even go a bit into debt for a while). A 30 to 35 lb kayak really simplifies paddling and takes a lot of the hassle out of getting to the put in.

Walking with the boat on my shoulder isn’t my problem. I do that a lot with white water boats. Although lighter (25-30lb), I’ve walked quite long distance (~1/4 mi) with the thing on my shoulder. Though I worried a bit about my back, but it hasn’t seem to bothered me so far. (I’m a little younger than willowleaf though not by much, recent x-ray of spine showed healthy condition)

The swing issue was addressed above and I’ll try it this weekend. This got me to think I’m just missing the technique…

The other problem I have was keeping the boat from hitting the side of the car while I put the other end on the roof (I have saddles, though the outside flap can be dropped for loading).

I’d love to see a video clip of a short person loading from their shoulder.

RE: Carry Strap For Kayak
I would recommend you to use the strap for your kayak, must have two drain holes, one forward of the balance point and one behind, Then you can easily pick your kayak without other’s help.


portable kayaks