How to Tie Down and Secure Your Kayak



Learning the proper way to secure your equipment for transport is important if you are thinking about renting a kayak this summer. At Hillcrest Sports, we want to see you and your family enjoy your time outdoors. We offer daily and seasonal kayak rentals at our shop in Gresham OR.

There are a variety of methods to safely transport kayaks. Racks are available to fit the back of pickups, the rooftop of cars, or you can invest in a small trailer capable of transporting several kayaks safely at one time. Below are a few suggestions for transporting your kayaks.

How to Tie Kayaks to the Car/Roof Rack

The key to properly attaching kayaks to a car roof rack requires cam straps and water-resistant rope. Use two straps that are at least 12 feet long for each kayak being transported.

  • Before securing the straps or using rope, make sure the kayaks are centered on the roof rack in between the crossbars
  • Use the cam straps to secure the boat to each crossbar.
    • Make sure the strap is inside of where the crossbar attaches to the roof of the vehicle.
  • Tie down the bow and stern with the rope.
    • The grab handle is a secure spot to use.

Important Points of Transporting Kayaks

The last thing you want to happen after renting kayaks is to have them come loose while transporting to your chosen launch site. Here are a few important points to keep in mind for safe transport:

  • Ensure you have a solid base to anchor the kayaks
  • Always secure the bow and stern.
    • This is especially important if you will be driving on windy roads or highways/freeways
  • Never attach the straps to plastic parts of your vehicle
  • Be careful to not overtighten the cam straps.
    • Too much tension can deform the plastic or crack the fiberglass

Stop by Hillcrest Sports in Gresham OR on your way to the mountain! In addition to kayak rentals and stand up paddle board rentals, we offer a great selection of outdoor sports equipment and apparel for adventures of all kinds.