Kyak racks

I traded my vehicle from a Chevy Uplander to a Hyundai Sante Fe, The Uplander had a Thule system Got tired of buying new foot packs for every vehicle I purchased.

Anyways bought J holders for the SUV, but at 77 and now a abdominal hernia, I cannot lift the Olde Towne Loon up into the J cradles…

Does anyone know how I could load this kayak and set it on the factory installed cross pieces so I could tie it down using the cross pieces and front and rear Tie down …Thanks Jack.

Maybe it’s time to consider
a trailer.

Or perhaps kayak saddles would be easier to slide your boat onto than J cradles, pushing the boat from the rear of the vehicle. I know when I’ve used J cradles on our Tahoe, it’s a bit of a pain to push the boat up from the rear, much easier with saddles.

Hope this helps,


kayak racks
Yes I have saddles Thule but they do not fit onthe sante fe cross peices which are 3 and a half inches wide.

The Thule cross peices are about 1 inch square…

Would love to be able to slide on Thats why I wondered if anybody has fixed a way to cover the factory cross bars to accomadate a kayak sitting on them… Thanks for the answer.

foam blocks?
I’ve never used them but don’t they make foam blocks to fit under a kayak for roof topping?

Thule Hullavator
Maybe it’s time to spend the money on a Thule Hullavator system?

I have 2 of them on my 2012 Santa Fe. The arms swing owns so you can load a kayak at waist level, then with the help of gas struts that support most of the weight, it’s quite easy to lift the kayak up on top of the roof. You will need the Thule towers that clamp to the Track on the Santa Fe’s roof, and Thule crossbars, but the system makes loading a boat very easy.

Check out the details on the Thule website.

foam blocks
They make them with a round hole cut thru them (for yakima bars) or a wing-section cut thru them, for factory bars. They look like this:

And this:

They’ll make noise when you slide your wet boat against them but you can definitely use them this way. You may want to put a towel over your tailgate if the boat rubs against it while loading.

Wishing you a full recovery…because that’ll help more than anything else!

Slide up from rear of vehicle
You can get a thule slipstream or V-saddles from Oak Orchard plus there a few other brands that can slide boat up from rear. Or like others the hullavator but that’s the most costly but easiest to load.

Load from the rear
It’s a lot easier to load from the rear, though your boat being so short does make that more difficult. It might be worthwhile to consider buying a longer and/or lighter boat than your 56 pound Loon.

If you are concerned about scratching the finish above the rear hatch, you can lay a small bath rug on the edge or buy one of the longer suction cup shower safety grab bars at any big pharmacy chain store and place that at the top of the tailgate door. Then lay your boat behind the car, bow toward it, and lift the bow with the stern still resting on the ground and drag it forwared until it rests on the rug or grab bar. Then, making sure it is centered, walk to the back of the boat and slowly lift and shove forward onto the rack. This way you are never lifting the whole weight of the boat – some is always transfered to the ground or the car.

I also carry a small folding step stool in the back of my vehicle to aid in being able to position and fasten the boat. I always loop the Thule straps around the middle of the crossbars BEFORE loading the boat so all I have to do is toss both ends over the boat so I can fasten them from beside the car. My 2003 Santa Fe had points under the bumpers where I could tie off the stern and bow safety lines, but your newer version may not have anything you can reach under the front. If so, get a pair of the nylon loops with the chunk of rubber tubing on them that you can place under the car hood to fasten the guylines to.

As I mentioned, a somewhat longer boat is easier to load because it can be started onto the roof at a less steep angle to the ground. As I’ve gotten older (66 this summer) I’ve traded in any of my heavy kayaks for lighter models, and now have 5 ranging from 20 to 45 lbs, all over 12 feet.

The Hullavator mechanisms are effective but very costly. I think it’s worth weighing the investment against the option of selling the boat you have and finding one easier to manage for both loading and getting to the water on the ground.

Thanks for the good wishes
Thanks all for the help… My Loon is really called a Casco 13.8 feet long very awkward to load from the side.

I am hoping to find a way to load it from the back slide up and on.

Wonder if anyone has tried those foam things the kids use to swim with about 3 inches wide and 3 to 4 feet long.

Cut a slot down the length of it and somehow tie it, tape it somehow, Wonder if it would stay on, Load the kayak upside down. and tie it front and back and use the straps to hold on the sides.

I do not want this boat to fly off and hit someone on the highway as its a long trip to the lake.

The foam pads I have tried and it was a constant adjusting pain in the neck. Probably ok for a couple miles to travel… Thanks again for the advice…