Pull behind kayak trailer

Anybody know of a good but reasonably priced trailer to pull behind my SUV for my trailer. It gets to be a bit hard at times to lift it by myself up on the SUV so thought a trailer would be so much easier and prompt me to kayak even more if I didn’t have to tackle lifting. I am in Northeast North Carolina, 50 min. away from Chesapeake Virginia, same for Nags Head, Kitty Hawk,Kill Devil Hills North Carolina, also I am from Richmond Virginia and go home often so that would not be out of the way for me either. Thanks and hope someone has some good ideas for me!

Define "reasonably priced"
I do not use a trailer, but I have looked at numerous varieties on the net. The SprortsRig styles, designed for lightweight boats and with motorcycle wheels seem to be the gold-standart. But you are going to be into about a grand or more for these.

Many folks have modified less expensive utility trailers for use with canoes & kayaks. But do not forget to factor inthe cost of a hitch, wiring, registration etc.

Why not look into a Thule Hullavator? I use one on a Subary Outback (primarily so that I can get the kayak out of the way of the hatch) and while it does have some idiosyncrasies it works well. On a tall SUV it should position the cradles about chest level. And the MSRP is about $450.



– Last Updated: Dec-09-06 8:04 AM EST –

Might want to check out the Thule Hullavator in Accessories on the Buying Guide.

An el-cheapo method is something I did a couple years ago. Get yourself one of those 4x8 Harbor Freight trailers, put saddles on the floor and tie your kayak down and go. And you can put removalable sides on the trailer and haul most anything. One trailer - several functions.

Total investment was under $400.00

Any day on the water is a great day,


Pull behind kayak trailer
THANKS! Will check into these. My kayak is only 60pds but find it so awkward lifting it up on my SUV and worry as I get older, these will become such a hindrance. Just looking for options now, of course to use now but to use into the future

Hullavator is designed with that in mind. The gas assisted lifting mechansim is the same as the lift gate in your SUV or minivan. Works great.

jon boat trailer
many years ago i bought a sunfish sailboat that came with a small galvanised boat trailer. it didn’t take long for me to put padded bunkers across the trailer instead of the ones it had that ran ‘fore and aft’ so that i could haul my canoe, then sailing skiffs, and now a couple of kayaks which are stored on the trailer most of the time, ready to go paddling. i dont even have a rack on my car anymore. (though i would like a rack for long trips.) the trailer is very easy to use, but some people have trouble learning to back one. i have friends who have trailer boats who after years of trying are still struggling to get down the ramp backwards.

SportRig- Gold?
I would rate the Sport Rig at silver. It’s made of steel. READ - RUST. chrome spoke wheels? probably tube tires. rust-rust-rust, I paddle in salt water. $$

GOLD is definetly the Rack and Roll. ALL anodized aluminum, mag wheels, rust proof and excellent enmgineering. folds up and stores against a wall.

$$$+ tho. reasonable if you want the best.


I have a Trailex SUT 200 S, single kayak trailer, and it works very well. I’ve used it for short distances on good roads and highways. The trailer is mostly aluminum with stainless and galvanized fittings, handles a 14-17 foot boat with ease, and is inexpensive. I bought mine used for less than a good roof rack.

Plus I don’t have a roof rack cutting the aerodynamics of my car, and costing me gas mileage, when I’m not hauling my kayak.

Modify a 1-snowmobile trailer
We bought an aluminum one for about $1000 in the fall of 2000, plus $40 for the shop to extend the already-long tongue. You’ll need to install your crossbars or make some out of padded 2x4s (but you’d have to have crossbars on a roof, anyway).

Loading and unloading this trailer is easy. The flat marine-plywood floor keeps gravel and guck from smacking the hulls. Some of the bow and stern does overhang the trailer but almost 10’ of the middle is protected. Despite weighing only 350 lbs (excluding crossbars etc), the trailer has a payload max of 1300 lbs. We’ve used it to haul chainlink “dog panels”, wood, and other bulky/heavy stuff as well as sea kayaks. It has a fairly soft suspension so no worries about damage to the kayaks. Well worth the money.

kayak trailer
I have looked at kayak trailers and consider the Rack n Roll the best if you can afford it. The Trailex is good and somewhat cheaper. Both are light and made with a soft suspension, important considerations. There are a few other models that sell for $1000 -$1400, but if I got over $1000, I would save for the Rack n Roll before buying one of them.

You can soften the suspension of a standard boat trailer by removing the leaf springs (too stiff), and then adding a motorcycle coil spring and shock on each side. I have a trailer converted this way for my wood sailing skiff. Work was done by Springfield fan Centerboard Co- rides very well. I have been told that removing some of the leafs of the leaf springs will also work, but have never seen it done.

At this time I’m in the process of converting a very old boat trailer into a kayak trailer. It has a soft suspension from one spring that goes from wheel to wheel in a arc, touching in the center at the tongue. I am replacing the tongue, having a square frame made to mount the racks on and buying brackets from Rack n Roll to hold Thule bars. Should end up like a poor man’s Rack n Roll.


I just purchased this trailer. It’s all that! It is expensive but if you paddle at all in the salt, anything steel is toast. If it helps justifying the price, remember, you’ll probably keep it for a very long time, which means you’ll get a lot of bang for the buck considering it’s low maintenance. It will probably look as good in the years to come as it does now.

Good luck finding that trailer!


I will have a trailer in the spring, and
have looked at dozens. It appears , Like dannyb9 siad, a jon boat trailer with a couple of bunkers added on is the way to go.Or, a utility traller with a gear box added and some racks.

Cheap trailer
I bought one of these utility trailers with the 8" wheels for $199. If your are handy with a socket set and a few wrenches it goes together in a few hours. There are obviously better trailers but this one works and is cheap and follows the vechicle well.

I added a plywood floor and stake sides and it works great for utility. Tie my canoe to the top of the racks and it works great. Use some foam or padding though as it will bounce quite a bit. If you look at this page they also have a boat trailer that will probably work for you.


Trailex Trailers – Best for your buck
I run a kayak outfitter and we use Trailex trailers. The beauty of the Trailex is that they have an aluminum frame (read: lightweight, strong, and will not rust!). They are also modular…all the components can be replaced. For instance, one of our instructors caught a trailer arm while driving onto a ferry and bent it. The replacement arm cost us less than $60.00 to have shipped to us and installed in less than 10 minutes with a simple wrench.

The SUT-200-S is a single kayak carrier (for boats up to 17’)…not cheap, though. It lists for about $690.00. visit www.trailex.com

Easy load method
You already have the rack so learn to load it. I used to load a 70+ lb fishing rigged SOT on my 4x4 truck with this method. I used a tail dragger cart to move the kayak. The kayak was poitioned nose first at an angle at the back of the truck. A tag line went from the stern to a tie on the truck to keep the yak from rolling or sliding away. I lifted the bow onto the rack then lifted the stern and slid it forward. Reverse to remove. I still use this method when solo loading my fishing kayak on my Subaru. The tag line and the tail dragger are the keys. If you are on a ramp or incline, put the nose of you vehicle down hill and load/unload from the high side. Easier and safer. Attach the tail dragger before you unload.