Hauling Kayaks in a Pickup Bed?

Technically in Florida not only a flag but at night you’d need a light to be legal. A bicycle tail light seems to meet state trooper intent to meet the law. requirements.


And once it hits that point of the state overhang, you need to have a flag or light if you are running with lights on. If the load is under 2 feet it only needs one flag.
If that wasnt the case, you would never see a telephone pole

"## Flag Requirements

Points of excessive length (including an overlength vehicle or combination or a load extending more than 4 feet beyond the rear of a combination) and width, including an overwidth vehicle or a load extending beyond one or both sides of a vehicle or combination, shall be marked with clean, plain, red or fluorescent orange warning flags, at least 18 inches square."

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I transport my 14" Epic in the truck bed with a Boonedox T-bone extender. I added a light weight plastic LED hitch light I found online for added visibility day and night. I have a tonneau cover down too, so the kayak is not buffeted by wind at all and I can drive as fast as I like without fear of it ripping off the roof. It is also the easiest and quickest on/off set up I have ever had.


Nice! Thanks for posting

Less chance of pulling into the garage with kayaks on the roof too…lol

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I haul my 12’ and 13’ kayaks in the bed of my truck all the time. Mind you I have 6’6" box + tailgate but I do not use an extender. I just flag the longest boat and go. They are tied in at the front of the box and strapped down at the back. If I ever go longer I will reassess my setup but you cannot ask for an easier load and off load.

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When my kids were young I taught them to yell out “Toys on top” as we returned from a trip with bikes on the roof… They took that responsibility seriously! :slight_smile:


This is an ideal and easy way to transport your canoe/kayak. I have a standard truck bed, and I transport my 17 ft canoe and 18 ft kayak with a bed extender. It’s quick and easy. I’m surprised more people don’t do it. From what i’ve seen the extenders are much cheaper than bed racks. And, your boats are out of the wind. I wrapped the extender cross bar with a pad using duct tape.



Link to the light
Extend wiring

  1. Added foam to bottom and use velcro strap around carry handle.
  2. Extended wiring and velcro it away from your kayak to prevent it from slapping against the finish while traveling
  3. I’ll use a hitch lock to keep the t-bone extender from walking away while out paddling, but I also often just un-hook it and stick it in the truck bed for added security.

Willowleaf you are right about some stuff. A lot of people in Michigan do seem to tailgate. I’ve been hauling boats with a bed extender for over 20 years including multiple trips from MI to Fla and S. Carolina. If some jerk-off wants to damage their vehicle by running in to my boat it’s their loss, especially w/ my canoe. The ‘let’s live in a rubber bubble’ mentally bothers me to no end. 99% of the time I don’t wear a life jacket,. Unless I have to go to work I always drink beer when paddling. I never where wetsuits/drysuits. I am smart and self-reliant. I’ve never had to be rescued or receive help from someone.

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What bridge do you live under?

Da**, I just realized I’ve been living in a rubber bubble too. I guess I’ll just stop wearin’ my pfd, stop dressin’ for immersion, and start drinkin’ more beer. I’ll start with a pbr right now even though I’m not currently on the water. Everyone benefits from practice and that includes drinkin’. Today is my luckyday. Who needs common sense when I can rely on luck to get it right?

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within reason, there is nothing wrong with living outside that bubble. I paddled for 20 years without a PFD, in a boat that had no bulkheads and I didn’t bother with float bags or spray skirt. Yeah, I sank it, but I got my scuba tanks out and brought it back to the surface. Now, I would not go without safety gear, know why I wont ? a friend sailed from CA to HI on his boat, his boat safely made to Maui and crashed on the rocks without him, based on the logs in the boat he must have fallen overboard 4 days earlier. That sold me on safety gear.

So I now live in a bubble but being a old long distance offshore sailer, I am of the firm belief you are not in trouble until the Coast Guard shows up and tells you how to sail and that as a last resort you always step UP into your lifeboat.

There are bubbles and there are bubbles, I think modern days bubbles are way too protective, but no bubble is dangerous, use common sense.


Unless you paddle exclusively in flat calm lillyponds the first two sentences are mutually exclusive with the third.

I’ve hauled 15’ and 17’ canoes in trucks since the eighties, 6’ and 8’ foot beds, with a red bandanna for a flag, no support for Canoe-No issues. Trucks are made to haul things. No different than hauling home a load of lumber or a ladder, always be mindful of your load. A little common sense goes a long way.

You are only “lucky” until you aren’t.

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I think common sense died a couple decades ago…

Common Sense is an oxymoron - Willowleaf has several valid points and Luckyday just wanted to troll - whatever - gotten lots to think about on this thread, appreciate the feedback.
I think that the bottom line is that truck-bedding my kayaks is not ideal, but will probably be fine - given good mounting and ‘common sense’ and careful driving…