One of the most useful items, for canoe tripping, that you might not know about

I run these between the thwarts and the yoke, on tandem canoes, to hold down the dry bags.
If the canoe doesn’t have a thwart in front of the stern paddler, I add one.
I usually run bungee chords between the gunwales, with the straps over them. If the boat flips, everything stays in place. I also use them to strap a lawn chair on top of the dry bags.
I also prefer them for strapping a canoe to the roof rack.
They are very useful to have around.

Cam buckle straps are the way to go, for sure.

What do bungee chords sound like? They musical bungee cords or something more special? :wink:

How is this different than using NRS straps? What am I missing???

Maybe you aren’t missing anything. But this wasn’t posted just for you.
These aren’t just cam straps, they’re loop straps and, yes, NRS sells them. Most of mine are NRS.
I can’t tell you how many people have seen me using loop straps and said they’d never seen them before.

In case anyone looked at the first link and didn’t notice the difference between these and a regular cam buckle strap.
NRS 1" Loop Straps | NRS

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I can see the advantage of having the strap ends secured (looped) onto a thwart or tie-down anchor rather than using a loose strap.


I like straps and have learned to use them a lot after years spent rafting. Rafts are rigged with straps.

But for securing boats to roof racks they are not so good and can slip. For that use rope with a loop and a trucker’s hitch.

I’ve had good luck using NRS straps… never had then slip, and I would wager for most folks, they are better and more secure as the chance for mistakes, dodgy rope choice, fumbing with cold fingers, etc are eliminated. Putting in a good backup knot behind the cam is added insurance.

In my experience, the NRS brand are the best even though made in China. I have used a few made in USA straps including those linked above, and they do not work nearly as well as NRS. NRS has really nailed both the cam, and the makeup of the webbing.

Using one now to keep washer door closed lol.


Hey, learned something new today - loop straps. Have you ever ordered any from I noticed in their FAQ they state there’s no warranty, and no returns.

I placed my first order, a while back, and just got an email that it’s been shipped.
It took longer than if you ordered from NRS, assuming NRS has them in stock, because these are made to order, which is probably why they can’t be returned.
Having a choice of buckles, strap materials, and more lengths is an advantage.
NRS straps are well made and been around for years. I’ll have to see how these stack up.

I always advise against bungee cords. They are composed of a bundle of rubber bands covered by a nylon fabric. As they age the rubber bands begin to fail one by one until they reach a critical stage where the remaining ones break all at once, causing the bungee cord to lose its elasticity. The fabric outer covering frequently hides this degradation. Also, with a set optimal useable length, you are often over stretching them or looking for creative ways of wrapping them around things. They have some uses, such as strapping down light loads on motorcycles or other things where some elasticity is desirable.

NRS cam straps are fully usable along their length, don’t stretch, and will show wear long before they are in danger of failing. They are easy to use and very strong, often with a rated strength of 1000 lbs. or more. Setting optimal tension is easy.

I also don’t recommend those rubber straps that truckers sometimes use. They degrade fairly rapidly with UV exposure, become brittle, and fail suddenly often with little sign of wear. They are also usable over a relatively small optimal length.

I agree. A friend of mine had her light canoe bungeed to her roof rack. She lost the boat on 128 around Boston.

You all know that is like losing a boat in a buffalo stampede.

I got my straps from Strap Works, yesterday. They aren’t as nice as the NRS straps. In particular, the buckle isn’t as nice. They have other buckle options, so maybe I would have been happier with a different one. Noting really wrong with the straps. Should last a long time, but heavy and ugly.
My advice is, if NRS has what you need, get it from them. Strap works has far more choices in length, width, color, and material.

Here’s another brand that has loop end options I’ve been looking at. What I don’t see are the rubber boot protectors like the Thule straps, not mandatory but nice to have.


Strapworks has a buckle pad option.
I have some straps (Yakima?) with a rubber boot over the buckle and it tends to make it harder to feed the strap through.

It amazes me that someone would think bungee cords are an appropriate way to secure something to a roof

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Don’t even trust the roof rack.
Boats should be tied/strapped securely to the frame or bumper at, at least, the front of the boat.
Racks fail.
Picture what would happen if the rack detached from the vehicle, and plan for that.

I have no problem trusting a roof rack. That doesn’t mean that I won’t use a bow or stern line, it just means that I believe it will not fail.

When I can shake my entire vehicle from the cross bars and they never come loose no matter the terrain or distance I drive, that is worthy of confidence in my book

Trust & verify (and, if you ride a bike, don’t follow a vehicle with a kayak loosely attached in front)

I trust my own roof rack. I have little faith in other people on the road