Newbies needing canoe help

So my brother got us a canoe for Christmas, a Lifetime Kodiak. We are in our 60’s & I am disabled. We are trying to figure the easiest way to transport the canoe. We don’t have much money, so that complicates it. I have looked at trailers but they are very pricy, so that is not an option. Getting it on top of our SUV will be a challenge for me, it weighs 95lbs. Are there websites where I can find a used trailer for sale? Could just use as much wisdom & advice as I can get. Thanks!

How big is SUV vs. canoe length?

My 13.5 ft. canoe fits inside my expedition with
very little hanging out.

95lbs sounds like a lot for canoe.
Mine is 3 person and 70lbs.

For a 13’ tandem (or 3 person) canoe 96 lb is really heavy. It is likely the way it is blow molded one piece from high density poly.

I have a fairly heavy OT Guide 147 and I rigged up some DIY side loading “ladder/ramps” to aid in loading by myself and make it very easy with two people. Maybe you could rig something similar for not much cost. Others have figured out ways to load from the back with one or two people putting a roller on the back of the car.

Here is a photo of what I do. Let us know what you come up with.

Try Craigslist and Facebook marketplace for a trailer.

Ultimately, it will still be 95lbs. You have to get it on and off the trailer, down to the water and also be able to right it if it swamps.

The gift sounds nice, but it may not be the right thing, depending on your disability.

Don’t forget to budget for a quality pfd (life jacket)

I thought about a trailer for a while and still might get a utility trailer at some point they will hold two boats as I’m going to sell the truck / gas guzzler. So a trailer in my case would serve many functions.

Trailers come with their own set of issues. You need a hitch on your car and lights run to the hitch. Then you have to register and pay fees plates and all that. You also then have to have a place to store it when not in use and leaving your canoe on the trailer when not used might not be that good for it. You need to launch from a place where you can park a car and trailer and you really should be proficient at backing one up. Short trailers and long cars are tricky in access areas where there are lots of people.

I bought for around 40 bucks a kayak dolly that works great once strapped to the hull of the OT 147. Pretty easy to do and one person with one hand can roll it on fairly level ground and down a ramp to the waters edge. It takes a couple minutes to put on and off and is small enough and folds up to go in the boat with you.

@mike93lx brings up a great point as you mentioned a disability and I don’t want to deter you from enjoying the water and time with your brother, but plan for safety first good PFDs and be aware of the water temps in case you end up getting wet. I don’t know the particulars of the canoe you have but it sounds fairly stable and that it has some flotation built into the blow-molded design, I could be wrong. Ether way a tipped over boat is not an easy situation to handle so don’t venture too far out until you are sure of your abilities.

They are harder to find these days, but there used to be canoe clubs in cities and towns who owned a boat storage barn or maintained racks near to launch points, which were often on the same property. This enabled members to store their boats right at the water and launch from there without having to transport. It’s a long shot but it might be worth looking into. – And if you are near any major waterways or lakes, sometimes marinas where people rent berths for power and sail boats will also offer on site storage of small human powered boats.

I almost forgot about those around here most were called fishing clubs and I remember one with small boats some with motors and some row boats and a few canoes all stored in pigeon holes with a little homemade winch crane thing to get them out and drop them in the water. A few even had a little club house with a couple tables.

I haven’t noticed one around in 40 years but they may still be around in some areas of the country. Great tip. :canoe:

Sailing club on our local inland lake (Lake Lansing) has a membership level that allows canoe/kayak storage & access to the club’s launch. Doesn’t make sense for me but I have friends that make use of it.