kayak yoke

I live in NE Minnesota close to the BWCA Wilderness. The paddling opportunities are endless up here. However there are many portages and I don’t have a good means to carry my 9 1/2 ft Old Town Rush kayak. The only yoke I have been able to find is made by Spring Creek Outfitters in Minnesota. Anyone know of other yokes that will work on this kayak?

pack canoe
Is what you need not a 9.5’ kayak.

kayak yoke
I am looking for a yoke to carry my 9.5 ft kayak.

kayak yoke
I am looking for a yoke to carry my 9.5 ft kayak.

There are…
kayak slings that go around your ‘yak and allow you to carry it shoulder strap style. I make no recommendation, just sayin’ they’re out there.

Keep your first trip short, you may want different gear.


I made my own
Used round edge 1 x 4" cuz that’s what I had, plywood might be lighter, cut it a few inches wider than the hull with two notches at each end to keep the strap from slipping. I put two blocks on the bottom just wider than where I wanted the coaming to set just aft the kayaks balance point and cut a semi circle facing the stern at the center point (you carry upside down, stern first) to let it set on your shoulders, start small and enlarge till it’s comfortable. Likewise I started with thin pads but added a couple inches to raise the boat for better visibility. I wrapped the whole thing with a stretchy neoprene.

To use loop your cam strap with the buckle near one end on the ground. Set the boat on it upright with the balance point just forward of the strap. Place the yoke near the front of the coaming and slide aft till the blocks grab the coaming. Hook the strap over notches at each end of yoke and pull tight. You can roll the boat up and over your head and grab the aft coaming with one hand to balance the boat. We’ve done half mile portages carrying an almost empty boat and a light pack, it’s not a lot of fun on a hot day, but it gets you there.

Good luck


Old Town used to sell them.
I have two that clamp on the coaning as on canoe gunwales.

I also made my own, but a tad simpler

– Last Updated: Jul-24-15 7:50 AM EST –

for my 17 foot long Eclipse.
Use a piece of 1" x 4" that is a few inches longer then the width of you cockpit
Attach some blocks (1-1/2" X 1-1/2" X 3") to each side where you want the boat to sit on you shoulders.
Also attach a piece of flat stock (I used 3/4" plywood) to these blocks.
I attached them all together with one long bolt with the head countersunk in the plywood.
Then glue some high density foam to the plywood. I used some that was several inches thick

The idea of the 3" blocks is so your head won't be in the cockpit.
Find the balance point of your yak and simply attach the cross member to it using One cam lock buckle strap( the way you would attach your yak to a roof top cross bar)

Back when we could post pictures from web shots I sent the set up to quite a few paddlers here

jack L

bit late with that advice.

My wife just dug up the old pictures
and I’ll gladly e-mail a few of them to you if you like so you can see how simple it is and how well the device works.

just let me know

jack L