How Do You Carry A Canoe On A Motorhome?

How To Carry A Canoe On A Motorhome

Published Date: March 12, 2021

Last Updated on January 19, 2023 by Camper Front

If the campsite you chose is a watery wonderland, there are higher chances that you would love to go on a canoe trip. But here is the challenge, how do you carry a canoe on a motorhome?

Because, unlike kayaks, canoes are BULKIER, and in most cases, HEAVY – which can be daunting to transport unless you’re living on the shoreside.

But just like how you carry a kayak on your RV using a trailer or racks, transporting your canoe is no different – only a few extra arrangements need to be done.

Read on to find out!

How Do You Carry A Canoe On A Motorhome?

How Do You Carry A Canoe On A Motorhome

There is no denying that a canoe is relatively easier to transport in water than on the road. And since they are pricier, the last thing you want is to see it rolling down through your rearview mirror while cruising in your rig.

Wrongly tied canoes have been one of the leading causes of fatal accidents during a camper’s getaway.

So snuggly tying down your boat is something you shouldn’t take lightly, even if it means following the RV tying manuals strictly.

And as your humble guide, safety is our number one priority. The methods we listed here ensure you strap that boat down nice and tight, preventing it from slipping off – even if the road you took is a bit bumpy.

Without further ado, let’s jump right into how you can carry a canoe on a motorhome:

Method 1: Roof-Mounted Racks

Tying it to a roof-mounted rack is one of the best ways that ensure your boat is coming with you safely to the campground without giving up any necessities, even when running out of space.

The roof-mounted system is every camper’s choice because it can carry other outdoor gear. And more importantly, it is the safest among all if loaded properly.

Roof racks are usually two bars running along the outsides of your car’s roof with at least two cross supports between them.

Although not every motorhome comes with a roof rack, getting one is not a big deal either. Many companies build custom racks to fit your RV conveniently. They are pocket-friendly and easy to install.

But you should only invest in quality racks and ensure it is installed adequately for optimal stability.

So how do you secure your boat to the roof rack?

First of all, you need to make sure your vehicle’s roof rack is capable of taking the canoe’s additional weight. You can do this by checking your vehicle’s or racks’ user manual to see the maximum weight.

Once, you’ve figured that out, next is to attach it to the roof rack.

Get help lifting the canoe onto the roof rack. Then center the canoe side to side and front to backjust so the canoe from shifting side-to-side during transport.

We recommend getting a Cam Buckle Tie-Down because it allows you to manually ratchet the belts for cinching and tightening the canoe down safely to the roof racks.

The last and final step is to tie off any loose strap ends. Check for any loose ends and tie them off PROPERLY and tuck them somewhere, so they don’t fly out during transportation.

Method 2: Transporting With a Canoe Trailer

Another preferable alternative is using a canoe trailer. It is efficient and easy to move around, especially if you’re transporting more than one boat.

A canoe trailer is like a kayak trailer that allows you to stack the boats and transport more of them.

On top of that, they come in a wide variety of sizes from small, medium, to bigger versions that can fit 8 to 10 canoes, with extra storage space for oars and other safety gear.

Before you attempt to load the canoe, attach your trailer via the hitch to your motorhome. If you don’t, you will have a hard time connecting the fully loaded trailer to your vehicle.

Even worse, the tongue may flip up and injury someone as you load it.

For this reason, before transporting your boat using the canoe trailer, the trailer hitch MUST be properly fastened to the motorhome.

Canoe trailers always come with special slots or holders that the canoes can fit into, use them. If not, you can secure the canoes with ropes or cam straps.

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Conclusion | How To Carry a Canoe On a Motorhome

How do you carry a canoe on a motorhome? As you can see, there are many more options on how to do this, but we only discussed only these methods above because they securely hold your boat more.

More importantly, they are ideal if you’re traveling over a long distance or rough terrain.

Sorry, we couldn’t list other economical options like bow and stern tie-downs or Foam Blocks that are inconvenient because they are likely to fail.

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