I have an 18’ Wenonah composite canoe. On the freeways where I live, there is a lot of truck traffic, throwing up enough rocks and such that paint chips on the hood of my car have been a frequent occurrence. I haven’t done much freeway travel with my canoe, am worried about possible damage if I take it on longer trips. Do any of you have advice for transporting a canoe long distances, particularly through urban areas, with a minimum of damage?
Should be OK
You might get some chips in the gel coat, but the canoe is pretty high up so those would be few and far between.
Stay well back
I’ve traveled thousands of miles at interstate speeds and through numerous major cities with one or two boats on top and never had a problem with rock chips. The most annoying thing I experience is the buffeting that the truck’s slipstream causes. As a result, I usually stay pretty far back and change lanes as soon as I “feel” the truck’s slipstream. Best thing to do is to have a solid rack system, tie the boat down well, and don’t follow too closely. I’ve discovered that in an urban setting, if you stay back far enough someone will usually cut in front of you. That lets them absorb the rock damage!
If you are worried
about chips invest in a canoe cover like the racers use, and put alittle pieceof foam around the bow. I have over well over 10,000 miles of highway travel with no problems on either my cedar strip or composite cnoes.
I have taken my kevlar Champlain
on many trips driving thousands of miles and never had a problem.
In addition to all the preceeding!..
Not only tie down the hull(normal) and ends(not as tight!), but some important additional tie down areas that make all the difference are tying the thwarts to your rack…to Both racks is the totally secure job… Do it in a way that, if possible, can also help in securing it side-to-side…as in solo_kanue’s mentioning of the gunwale guides, which solve the side-to-side problem immediately.
Make sure your tires are good and
inflated to the correct pressure. The wind effect
from trucks, combined with heat and an uneven road surface, will exert more stress on your tires.