Help support the WCHA Forums by making a tax-deductible donation!

loading the canoe on the roof rack?

Discussion in 'Tips and Tricks' started by yankee, Oct 5, 2015.

  1. yankee

    yankee Curious about Wooden Canoes

    We have a 16 foot, 80 pound Old Town wood canvas canoe
    and have not figured the best way, easiest to load it on top of our 92 BMW sedan with Yakama roof racks. We are in our early 70's. Any ideas or suggestions sure would be appreciated. Thanks, Bill
  2. MackyM

    MackyM LOVES Wooden Canoes

    I use Yakima racks with the "Boatloader" option. With this I can load a 17' Chestnut cruiser 4on top of a Ford Explorer, which is much taller than I am.
  3. Benson Gray

    Benson Gray Canoe History Enthusiast Staff Member

    This may be stating the obvious but I find that a trailer is the easiest way for me to handle a heavy canoe. Good luck,

  4. Dave Osborn

    Dave Osborn LIFE MEMBER

    As Benson mentions, trailers are easier. However, the canoe will get much root dirt and dust on dry days and slimed with crud on rainy days. Consider a cover if you do trailer your canoe.
  5. Dave Wermuth

    Dave Wermuth Who hid my paddle?

    the boat loader is an extension bar that slides in one or the other of the main bars. That way you can put one end of teh canoe up on the extension and then lift the other end to the regular bar and slide it over. i've use it on a tall SUV and it worked great.
  6. Tsuga88

    Tsuga88 Curious about Wooden Canoes

    Late-comer to the conversation here, but for years my mother (a tiny woman) has loaded small boats of all kinds (canoes, kayaks, and rowing sculls) onto her station wagons using towels or bathmats. The modern, rubber-backed bathmats are perfect for this - the rubber against the car keeps the mat from sliding around, and the boat slides across the top of the mat. Drape one over the end of the car's roof and/or trunk corner, or where ever the boat would come in contact with the car, and just slide the boat up onto the rack. It can be flipped over to sit upside if needed. This may not be the slickest way but it's cheap and doable, even for those of us who are vertically challenged. I still use this method to load my heavy sea kayak onto my rack.
  7. millie_sass

    millie_sass Canoe anybody?

    Have you considered hoists mounted on the ceiling of your garage for storage? Click the image to see a larger view.
    It works for me -- one canoe is 80 lbs. one is 60 lbs. I load them myself altho I am short and weak. Easy loading and unloading.
    Of course, at any paddling adventure I have fellow members of the WCHA Three Rivers Chapter to help me to load and unload. Making up for strength and height, we work well together to lift any of my canoes onto my carrier rack.
    Also -- I love it that the lightweight Nussmuk can sneak in under there. Lots of room for 3 canoes in my little garage.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2020
  8. Abenakirgn

    Abenakirgn Curious about Wooden Canoes

    A BMW is not a tall vehicle. I load onto the second tier of a canoe trailer (about the same height) by walking along side and transfering from my shoulders to the rack
    by placing the the inboard rail on the racks and sliding the canoe inboard while lifting off my shoulders.
  9. Pook

    Pook Chestnut Canoe fan

    Agreed- BMW sedans are not tall cars.
    If you can lift the canoe for portaging, CCM.jpg you should be able to load it on your racks.
    I use Abenakirgn's technique to load my canoes. The Prospector at 85lbs is a beast ( Pal and Bob's much easier) but once lifted, it is easily loaded- this becomes even easier if you do it with an assistant and each take an end

    Good luck!
  10. lowangle al

    lowangle al Curious about Wooden Canoes

    The OP doesn't mention if his boat has a center thwart or yoke. If it doesn't that complicates things.
  11. Pook

    Pook Chestnut Canoe fan

    Agreed Al, in cases where you are lifting alone, though that has little bearing on whether onto a BMW or another vehicle.
    With someone lifting bow and someone on stern, even without yoke or carry thwart, it is a pretty easy lift onto racks on BMW.



Share This Page