How to Transport a Kayak in a Truck


Written by David Myers

October 31, 2019
kayaking with doggo

Photo of the week!

Kayaking offers an appealing and simple way to get out on the water, but how do you transport your kayak in a truck (rather than a van or SUV) to your favourite spot? These tips will help to keep from damaging your equipment during transport and offer advice on some essential items:-

A Hitch Bed Extender

A height-adjustable truck hitch bed extender will create an extra surface and support for your kayak to rest on as it hangs off the end of the truck bed. The majority of extenders will increase the length of your truck by up to 2 feet.

To provide some protection from rust and damage to your kayak, some indoor carpet or AstroTurf can be zip-tied over the extender or even over a pool noodle in a transverse position across the metal hitch bed extender bar. This will allow the kayak to slide up onto the extender.

The extender also gives you an extra strap to tie down your kayak. It’s wise to put a lock on it then you can leave it on your truck when you’re in the water. To prevent theft of the bed extender you can use a locking hinge pin.

Straps and Cords

Lashing straps go through the front and loop onto either side of the hitch bed extender. However, you must avoid securing them too tightly. Stay away from ratcheting straps which can cause warping.

The kayak can also be mounted with a single bungee cord to prevent the back end from wobbling. How do you keep your kayak secure from theft? You should also use a cable cord for added security from theft in case you plan to leave it in your truck overnight.

Stealing kayaks and paddleboards is unfortunately commonplace and you need to take adequate preventative measures. The security cable cord comes down the scupper hole and makes a couple of loops around the kayak, in turn attaching to the bed extender and a lock can be used.

The cable cord also acts as a back-up in case one or both of the straps breaks.

Loading the kayak

A heavier or wider kayak will need a kayak cart. You can then lower the tailgate, roll it up to the bed extender and slide it up easily over the carpeting on the pool noodle. The cushion support will prevent damage and is significantly better than strapping down your kayak to bare metal.

When you load up the kayak, ensure that you have the support brace in the middle of the truck bed for the kayak to rest on, the bed extenders are in place for the front of the kayak to rest on and a cushion at the front of the truck bed.

Finally, do ensure that you have your proper safety equipment and adhere to the regulations for transportation of kayaks in your country e.g. secure a red flag on the portion of the kayak extending from the truck.

sit on top kayak vs sit in kayak

Sit In vs Sit On Kayak

One of the first decisions you need to make as someone entering the sport of kayaking is which kayak to pick. There are two main types of kayak, and each have their own unique set of pros and cons. The two types of kayak are called ‘sit on top’ and ‘sit in’ kayaks....

scupper plugs use for kayaking

Do You Need Scupper Plugs in a Kayak?

One of the inevitable consequences of being a regular kayaker is getting wet. It comes with the territory of taking part in water sports. However there’s times when you’re kayaking where you want to keep how wet you get down to the bare minimum. For example if...


5 Best Duck Hunting Kayaks in 2020

Finding the best duck hunting kayak can be a difficult task. After all, you need to incorporate the various features you need as well as your budget. To understand the key features of a good duck hunting kayak, and to find the one that will be most efficient for...

best duck hunting kayak

Lifetime Lotus Kayak Review

The Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak has been a wonderful model to get to grips with now that I’m kayaking more. As a beginner, I wanted to choose something which would help me grow in confidence and make it easy to get in and out of the water without any fuss, and...

lifetime lotus kayak review