How to Load a Kayak by Yourself

How to Load a Kayak by Yourself
If you are an avid boater, chances are that there will come a time you need to load your kayak onto your car without having a second hand around to help lift the boat onto your kayak rack. If you are a burly weight lifter, it's probably not too difficult to just hoist the boat over your head. However, for most people, this can be a tricky proposition. While there are gadgets, like Wheeleez (see resources), that make it easier, single loading a kayak can be done with nothing more than a stool and some foam padding.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Thin foam padding
  • Step stool
  • Kayak carrier
Step 1
Place the foam padding over the rear window of your vehicle. The foam should cover the window, and, if you have a sedan, the trunk as well.
Step 2
Drag or carry the boat to the back of the car, with the bow facing the rear of the car.
Step 3
Place the stool near the back of the car so that you can comfortably reach the back of the kayak carrier while standing on the stool.
Step 4
Align the boat with the carrier. If your carrier holds the boat flat, this is easy. If you have a J-style carrier, make sure you place the stool on the side facing the opening of the J.
Step 5
Lift the bow of the boat and slide it up on the foam, then slide it into the back part of the kayak carrier. If necessary, complete this step by stepping up onto the stool. Make sure the boat is stable and will not fall off.
Step 6
Lift the stern of the boat and finish sliding it into the kayak carrier, centering the cockpit between the front and rear of the kayak carrier.
Step 7
Remove the foam padding from the car and step up on the stool, securing the boat to the rack with the straps that come with the rack.


Article Written By Candace Horgan

Candace Horgan has worked as a freelance journalist for more than 12 years. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications, including the "Denver Post" and "Mix." Horgan holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and history.

Keep Me Informed

Weekly newsletters, announcements and offers from to your inbox.

Sign me up!

We HATE spam and promise to keep your email addresses safe and secure.