Tow kayaks behind motor boat

I may be getting a 18’ power boat. It will be free so it’s hard to turn down. I have three kayaks, 13 to 17 feet long. The only way I can think of taking these along on a power boat trip is to tow them. Has anyone ever done this and at what speed and configuration?

I will, of course, try to tie them to the sides of the boat but it’s not a large power boat and it probably won’t work.



Roof rack?
You may be able to make a PVC or aluminum rack like the sort used in the back of a pickup truck.

It would catch a lot of wind, though.

Or a “ladder hook” sort of thing that would mount them on the side of the boat, but then what to do when docking?

I don’t like the idea of towing them. If one should flip over, what will you do?

Best of luck,


You can tow them with a bridle at fairly slow speeds but you’ll wreck them at planing speeds, they arn’t intended for that. The bridle needs to be under the bow of the kayak to keep the front out of the water or it’ll play submarine.

Bill H.

I’ve thought about making line loops
covered with swim noodles attached to, and snugged up to, the gunnel rails to cradle two of them on the sides of my deck boat. Then if yours is a bowrider, see if the 13’ would fit down the middle. Agree that towing them at anything but idle speed could pose big risks. R

towing is difficult
They ride better on the boat

Tried This Once
My sister has a 22’ power boat with a small cabin under the front deck. I stuck my 16’ boat bow first through the hatch into the cabin area right up to the front of the cabin. The stern stuck out to the open deck area between the driver’s seat and the front passenger seat. I propped it up on some foam blocks (the kind you use to car top a boat) for cushioning. This worked great.