I have a 29’ motorhome and I would like to transport my 2 kayaks on the roof. I’ve seen canoes on top of motorhomes. Anybody have an idea for getting a kayak on the roof of a motorhome? In the past, I’ve driven my pickup which is set up to carry our boats but would like to avoid the extra vehicle. Can’t see just trying to muscle them up there. My wife is of slight build and that idea scares me (visions of boat parts all over the tarmak).
OK, Silly questions (almost) get silly answers (almost.) This only works in the woods or at home if you have mature trees and a ladder on yer home away from home. Drive under a tall and substantial limb, install portable block and tackle, drive back out, lift yak, drive under, lower yak, repeat for next yak. Or, use the garage roof as a loading dock and B&T for unloading. Did you ever see a hay trolly installed in an old barn? Maybe some of these almost off the wall suggestions can start the creative process going.
I looked at a used…
motorhome at one point and nixxed that idea,because I would be such a pain. However the RV dealer suggested mounting hully rollers on the rear of the home to roll it up on the roof. You would have to nearly stand your kayak on end ,then crawl up on the roof to pull them up.It’s a job if your kayaks are short,or you are by yourself. Also check if the kayaks on the roof top do not exceed your states minimum bridge height specfications.Otherwise you just may swipe them off the camper. I ended up buying a popup camper that the kayaks can strapped on the top.I am planning on retiring in a few years,and buying a motorhome too,but I just may switch to folding kayaks at that point. Good Luck.
Happy Paddling billinpa
This is a good one.
Challenge that is. If I were my Dad (the retired master-mechanic that can build anything) I think I would look into small 12 volt winches. Mounted on the back of the RV. One per side for two boats. Here is the idea for each winch regarding pulleys… Single pulley at roof edge and another single pulley up front on roof. Cable from winch to pulley at roof edge to pulley at front of camper roof, back to back end of RV. Hully rollers at top above your head there, so they can accept the bow of the boat and roll it on up. “V” frame (or?) on top of RV that cable is going to pull boat up into. Drag boat to RV. Lift and clip cable to bow line or painter or grab loop, start wich and begin lifting. Winch will take the weight and you will lift back of boat up to get it over the rollers. Continue winching until boat is up on top. Now the bow of the boat is “tied down” by virtue of the winch cable. Have other tieing system planned out and clipped to stern grab loop/handle and ratchet, truckers cinch or whatever that line to back of RV. Boat is now on roof in “V” frame cradle, tied down at both ends.
To take down, use stern tie down to pull boat back off roof (after releasing the catch on the winch) and pull it down carefully.
Hows that for a wild-haired idea?!
My Parents just retired (lucky them!) and the drive a Motorhome now. They jsut bought a nifty Canoe trailer for their boats and are very happy with it.
Of course they have a 14’ Motorhome not a Monster machine like yours.
Kayaks & Motorhomes
We’ve been full-timing, in a motorhome (currently a 38 footer) for over 8 years. We carry our sea kayaks atop our ‘toad’ (a GMC Sierra, w/shell). That’s a lot easier that trying to lift one atop the RV. If you’re not pulling a tow vehicle, your best bet may be one of the small kayak/canoe carts. They’re easy to load and push around by hand.
You will need a bar with rollers accross the rear of the coach. Another bar forward with saddles. Make sure you have enough clear space for the kayaks. You will also need a forward bar or mounts to tie the bows down. Longer kayaks are easier to load because of the height of the RV. I hope they are kevlar. You will need a bow line to hoist the bows up and ito the rollers, then it is a matter of winch or pull. We looked at this when we were shopping for an RV. We ended up with a fifth wheel and I stacked the kayaks on the roof of the truck. By stacking I was able to go 4’ into the bed and still turn. I have seen 10’ kayaks mounted verticaly off the rear bumper. The owner had cages for the boats to sit in.
I have a 34 foot class A
And I carry my canoe or kayak on the roof. I installed some 2X6s made of the recycled polyethylene plastic and used silicone glue and lag screws to tasten them to the roof of the RV. The down side of this is that I had to penetrate my rubber roof. This stuff is very UV resistant which is a major issue out here in the desert.
as for placing the boat on the roof, I lean it against the rear of the RV, climb up the ladder onto the roof, and just drag it up onto the roof over the railing. My 2X6s have some eye bolts for easy tie down.
One caution, never use the existing racks that many RVs have bolted to the roof to tie down a boat, they are way too weak for that purpose.
I’ve probably driven 2000 miles with mine on the roof like that and the only problem has been stuff blowing out of the cockpit, because i forgot to tie the stuff down.
I went looking for some picts of mine and can’t seem to find them, but I’ll try to remember to take my camera down with me when I work on the generator, and send some picts ASAP.
I hefted mine up…
…onto & off of my truck slide (probably about the same height off the ground as your rig) several times solo, although it was certainly easier to have a second person helping. When you have no help, try to find something to rest the bottom tip of your boat on after lifting it (from the ground) until the boat’s center point is on the pivot point. You should then be able to handle it from the roof. I like the idea of rollers on the back bar, but I just used pipe insulation that could spin.
Actually, the biggest problem for me was finding a vacant space on the roof. There was only one possible spot, & it was a tight fit between the AC, crank-up-antenna & a plumbing vent. I had no front rail to tie to, so I just put some padding under the front end & tied it from the antenna base over and down the side to my jack. Put 3500 “air miles” on my yak in 3 wks & no problems. Glad I took it along. Happy trails!
Vertically, against the back…
my husband has mine bunji’d onto the back of the motorhome. It works great and doesn’t move at all. East on, easy off.
rollers work, but…
I gave up and made a trailer. I’m getting way to old to schlep two yaks on to the roof.