kayak on high roof campervan

If you’re planning a kayaking trip, you’ll want to make sure your equipment is safely stored and transported. Having it on top of your campervan can be convenient and easy, but if you’re not careful it can also get damaged or stolen.

The good news is there are lots of different ways to carry kayaks on the roof or back of your campervan, from carrying them yourself with a roof rack to using an inflatable kayak trailer. Here are some options that are best on how to carry a kayak on a high-roof campervan.

Transport using a kayak rack

To carry a kayak on your campervan, you’ll need to use some sort of rack. There are several options available:

Using a roof rack

If you’re looking to take your kayak on adventures with your campervan, the best way to do it is with a roof-mounted rack. This will be the easiest method and requires no specialized equipment. All you have to do is pre-install the appropriate roof rack on your campervan.

You can quickly set it up when ready for your trip and you can as well rapidly dismantle it when not in use. When installing roof racks, you have to factor in the right length, size, and strength for the job.

There are different roof racks and the wrong one can come undone when your campervan is in motion. This can damage your kayak which will lead you to additional spending. After installing the right roof rack, use the appropriate means to get your kayak onto the roof. This way, you don’t get to scratch or damage your van.

Also, take care to fasten your kayak correctly, this will allow your kayak to stay in position when moving at high speed. This is a crucial step so take your time. The roof rack can also be used to transport other things as well, it allows you to carry large items such as large luggage, water tanks, or containers.

Using a kayak rack

These are designed specifically for carrying kayaks and can be purchased online or in many sporting goods stores. They’re generally easy to install and come with straps or bungee cords to secure the boat during transport.

Once installed, get your kayak on it and secure it firmly in place. However, take care not to use your kayak rack for transporting other items. Kayak racks are often not as strong as regular racks since they are built to carry the weight of kayaks alone. Any additional load can lead them to fail.

Using a kayak trailer

If you don’t want to deal with any extra hardware, this would be a great option for you. The only downside is that it can be pricey depending on what brand you buy though sometimes renting them at your local boating center will save money. These trailers are lightweight, but they often have more storage space than other types of racks if needed, which means you could also bring along camping gear too.

The most ingenious solution for carrying your kayak is to use a trailer. This will allow you to tow your kayak behind the vehicle and then easily lift it up onto the roof rack. It’s also a great option if you want to take two boats or if yours is super heavy because they can be towed instead of both standing side-by-side on top of your vehicle like they would in an ordinary roof-mounted rack setup.

A kayak trailer allows you to carry more than one kayak at a time and you can also carry any type of kayak of your choice

Strapping a kayak to the back of your campervan

Some campervan owners decide to strap their kayaks to the ladder at the back of their vans. This option falls on the easy side of transporting a kayak on a motorhome. Cords and straps can be used to hold the kayak to the ladder. You don’t need to make knots with ropes, knots may make it difficult to take off the kayak from the ladder.

However, you should ensure the straps or cord are tight to prevent the kayak from falling off on the road. The cords are used to make the kayak steady and avoid scratching the van. You can transport just one kayak with this method.

Use inflatable kayak

If you’re looking for a kayak that’s easy to transport and store, an inflatable kayak is a great option. The inflatable boat can be stored in the back of your campervan and quickly inflated when you need it. When the trip’s over, you can deflate the boat and put it away in one of the storage compartments until the next use.

Inflatable boats are designed to be lightweight, making them easy to carry along with other camping gear. Most come with backpack straps or handholds on either side for easy carrying. However, be careful when packing your inflatable boat. Although they can be tough, you still risk puncturing it with sharp objects.

Different Racks for Carrying Kayak on the Roof of a Campervan

As earlier mentioned, the first step in carrying a kayak on the roof of your campervan is to install a normal or kayak rack on the roof. There are many types of racks available, and they can be installed in a variety of ways.

To carry larger kayaks, you can use the Thule or Yakima brand roof-mounted racks that have bars strong enough to hold your boat securely in place. These racks usually come with all the parts you need to make sure your boat is secure when driving long distances.

If you prefer not to drill holes into your campervan’s roof for installation, there are also roll-on systems available that work well for smaller boats or those who don’t want their roof damaged by drilling holes into it. You’ll still need some sort of tie-downs or straps though because these aren’t as secure as permanently installed racks might be, and neither are they as easy to use since getting them off requires taking them back off again.


Kayaking is a popular sport that thrills many people. However, if you don’t stay near the water body, then you often need to transport your boat. Thankfully, you can easily do this with the roof of your campervan. Just find a method that appeals to you and you will in no time be in the water enjoying the sport you love best.

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