Safe overhang off bed for a kayak to avoid deforming hull, etc

More probable than someone rear ending you is that just a slight slip and tap on the windshield when loading or braking can easily crack it. And the hatchback is not designed to be open when the car is moving, you can easily overstress the hinges and even bent the door out of shape driving like that. I have seen both happen in seven yrs of Kayaking.

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I don’t want my wet or dirty kayak inside my car.


Driving around with 6 feet of kayak sticking out the back of a truck strikes me as a very bad idea.

As Lurch the Butler would say . . . Uh huhhhuhu!

I have a 73" bed + the 24" tailgate & the bed extender. I haul 14’ & 17’ kayaks all the time. I have never had any issues of any kind. Now my kayaks are good quality rotomold & fiberglass yaks. I fail to see how you could deform a hull on a normal trip in normal conditions. Personally i think you are over thinking this.Also I suggest you get the Ranger. You will find that that the 6’ bed is a whole lot handier than the worthless 4’ one.

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I transport a Tribe 13.5 tandem in my Ram Bighorn. The bed is about 76”.
I load the Tribe straight in, upside down, lift the tailgate and run a strap through the rear tiedowns and handles.
It’s almost perfectly centered, doesn’t move at all and it’s high enough to walk under with a slight squat.

I’ve been on the Interstate doing 80 MPH without any problems.

My kayak dealer was the one who showed me this setup. I’ve been doing this about 6 years and never a problem.

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I have a friend who does this with 2 kayaks and it looks super convenient, secure, and hard to get it wrong. This I think would be my favorite option. I can’t see the kayak going anywhere with this setup.

I’ll probably end up getting a truck soon for multiple reasons so will likely end up at least giving this method a try in the next year or so. Crossing fingers

Thank you all

  1. Having a ridiculous amount of hull stick out from behind your vehicle is just asking for trouble … eventually some bonehead—looking @ his/her phone & not the road—is likely to rear end the notable amount of overhanging boat. I’m a big believer in the law/theory of probability, i.e., IF something CAN happen …

  2. Get the truck that you LIKE the best. Build, looks, quality, dependability, features, etc. then just stick a truck bed kayak rack over the bed & have peace of mind that your beloved boat(s) will safely, securely make the journey to & from.

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I’m a longtime pickup truck owner my first was a half-ton 2WD full bed work truck that I camped in and hauled everything from manure to landscape bark to furniture and building materials. My last truck was a heavy ¾ tom 4WD and I plowed snow 4 wheeled pulled people out of ditches plus all the above. I just sold it with 300,000 miles on it and wont buy another. It is now costing me 40 bucks to fill up my sub compact car 50 for the midsize, and the truck would be close to 150 bucks.

IMO no one should buy a truck because they need to haul a paddle boat from time to time. In many ways it is so much easier to load two full size canoes on top of a little car that’s not as high as say an SUV and a truck is even higher.

Just my 2 cents.

A super valid point Bud. I would almost venture to say that it’s quite plausible that 60% of pickup truck owners don’t even use their truck for what a truck is for(!). Trucks have just become the present day in vogue vehicle to drive … very akin to Jeep Wranglers all jacked up/ lifted w/ oversized tires, winch, aftermarket bumpers, but then shiney showroom 20” wheels that are only fit for mall crawling—DEF not off-road rock crawling.

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Correct. When I had my 2WD pick em up truck I built a box I would put in the bed during the winter and fill it full of solid paving bricks for added weight over the axle. I ran skinny snow tires with studs and did fine in our Great Lakes snow belt. I was at the bottom of a hill at a light next to a 4WD monster truck with 20” wide mud tires and I went straight up the icy hill passing him as he was sliding side to side and eventually backing back down. It was a pretty truck and the bed you could eat off of.

I think the days of owning a big truck or big Jeep just for the fun of it are about over with the way fuel prices are going.

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That’s the perspective of mature guys. Pick ups are cool and for someone my size just fit better.
But , if my 20 yo pickup croaks, I’ve got my eye on a Honda CR-V.
And my truck has always been used for hauling truck stuff plus boats.

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