When it comes to transportation for kayakers, there are many vehicles with the potential to be a good fit. Of course, it all comes down to personal choice, but there are certain characteristics that make loading and transporting kayaks, as well as getting to those remote put-ins and take-outs, easier. All-wheel drive makes negotiating dirt and gravel roads safer, and a shorter height makes loading and unloading on roof racks a breeze. Fuel economy is a concern for everyone, but particularly for paddlers who often drive considerable distances to kayak a new stretch of river, lake or coastline.
This all-wheel drive station wagon is extremely popular among outdoor enthusiasts of all types and is particularly well-suited for paddlers. Full time all-wheel drive makes negotiating dirt roads, gravel and mud safer and easier. The short height helps when loading and unloading kayaks from roof racks. As a station wagon, the vehicle has ample space in the rear for the rest of your paddling and camping gear. Finally, this reliable wagon gets 29 miles per gallon on the highway, so driving a bit farther to check out a new spot is less painful on the wallet.
If a station wagon isn't quite your speed, then consider stepping up to the Subaru Forester, a small SUV that shares similar characteristics to the Subaru Outback. With full time all-wheel drive, getting in and out of remote areas is no problem. The Forester boasts a bit more ground clearance than the Outback, but is also a bit taller. If loading and unloading from the room can be problematic for you, take that into account when considering this vehicle. The Forester offers great gas mileage for an SUV, up to 27 miles per gallon on the highway.
Ford Escape Hybrid
Another small SUV to consider is the Escape Hybrid. Thanks to the hybrid gas-electric technology, the Escape Hybrid boasts 34 miles per gallon in city driving conditions. Intelligent four-wheel drive is always on, and sensors monitor traction 200 times per second, automatically adjusting torque distribution as needed. The Escape will get you there, and it will do so without breaking the bank.
Ford Escape Hybrid
Article Written By Christopher Williams
Christopher Williams has spent over 11 years working in the information technology, health care and outdoor recreation fields. He has over seven years of technical and educational writing experience, and has brought strong skills and passion to the Demand Studios team in articles for eHow and Trails in 2009.