Transporting Old Town Canoe

Hello all,

This is my first post! I use to transport my canoe on top of my Honda Accord but I now have a Toyota Tundra Truck and was wondering how others transport their canoes using a truck. I do not want to spend the money for a rack system seeing the one I like is in the $800 range. My inital thought is to sit the stern in the back of the truck bed with the bow resting on the back of the trucks cab with the seats pointing up. I just worry that the force of the wind while traveling down the roads will put to much pressure on the canoe and may cause damage. Would like to know how others transport their canoes without a rack system.


DIY rack
It is so easy to make some sort of removable rack system for a truck that I would not consider anything else. It is so much more likely that you’ll scratch your truck trying to secure your canoe otherwise.

Hitch Mount-
A buddy of mine has an extender that goes into his towing hitch. It looks like a “T” and he just drops his tailgate and lays them in the bed flat.

Some people put down the gate, lay
the boat down flat on the bed, canoe open side up, and tie it in. Should put a red flag on the rear end of the canoe for safety and regulations.

I wouldn’t want to do it that way for long, but I’d rather do it that way than have one end of the canoe sticking up over the cab. You might get in a few spring trips until you can improvise a rack.

make a big sawhorse…
A friend of mine made a removeable canoe rack for his truck, looked like a tall sawhorse. Made it out of 2X4, it fit behind the wheel wells and tail gate. For one canoe, he would pad the front of the canoe where it sat on the roof of the cab, tie the back of the canoe into the sawhorse rack. Front and rear tiedowns completed the rig. The sawhorse rig was free standing, just lift it in and out of the truck when needed.

We drove all over Virginia carrying a canoe with that rig.

I have an F-150 with a camper shell, have it racked up with “Quick and Easy” rain gutter towers, fake rain gutter on the camper shell from Yakima. Two 6’,4" hardwood 2X2’s complete the rack, I can carry two full size canoes with that truck.

I once bolted two 2X4’s vertically to the wheel wells of an old Chevy Luv truck I had, then made a rack by fastening a 2X4 across those, then had a regular rain gutter rack for the cab roof.

Does your truck have the holes in the cargo bed sides that accept a 2X2? Something could be made of them…

  1. bucks or less puts Yakima …
    – Last Updated: Feb-24-10 10:35 PM EST –

...... Q Towers / bar and clips on top your cab . Another 35. adds canoe loader blocks (w/good strap) to the bar (good idea) . You can get lock cylinders too . Chances are if you shop around you can get all that new , for the same 150. bucks or close .

Takes 5 mins. to put on , or take off the Q Tower set up , once you assemble the first time ... good idea to store off truck when not in use .

You can do various other things for the back end , make your own wooden rack for starters , later up grade to a manufactured product ... like Reese canoe loader is and example - 100.

I suggest you at least get the Q Towers on the cab to start with ... you won't regret it .