Wanderlust is your middle name, hence why you own an RV. You love nothing more than picking a destination on the map, getting in your vehicle, and going there. The only problem is, sometimes you pass an amazing body of water and wish you could have explored it in your kayak.
You love kayaking, and it breaks your heart that you can’t bring yours with you. You’ve tried every which way to squeeze your kayak in the RV, but you just can’t get it in there. Have you ever considered using a rack instead? It frees up space inside the vehicle by stowing your kayak on your roof.
This sounds like just the solution you’re looking for, right? Lucky for you, we have a list of great kayak racks for RVs right here. Make sure you keep reading!
1. Malone Downloader Folding J-Style Universal Rack
Our first pick is the Malone Downloader folding J-style universal rack. As an Amazon’s Choice product, it comes with stern lines and a bow for attaching your kayak to your vehicle. It’s a bit weighty at 75 pounds, but then again, it does have to hold your kayak up.
This universal rack is 19.5 inches tall, six inches wide, and 17 inches long. You get everything you need for installation, including pre-coated mounting bolts that are either 60 or 70 millimeters and JAWZ mounting hardware. This should be compatible with many oval, square, or round-shaped cross rails.
You can even fold down your rack for better overhead clearance. It also comes with a ramp for loading up your kayak. How handy!
2. Swagman Roamer LT Roof Rack for Pop-up Campers and Camper Shells
What if you don’t have a motorhome, but a smaller vehicle like a pop-up camper instead? Then we recommend the Swagman Roamer LT roof rack. Designed for pop-ups like yours as well as camper shells, this rack measures seven feet and weighs 150 pounds.
It’s made of steel that’s sure to hold up. For better durability and to prevent fading, corrosion, and rusting, your rack also has a black powder coat finish. To make your life easier, you get everything you need for installation right in the box, although you will have to do some drilling. You’ll find roof-rack feet bolts, four total, as well as metal backing plates. The protective rubber pads will keep the metal rack from scraping against the roof of your camper.
Dual square crossbars hold your kayak as you drive. Should you have a more unique make and model of kayak, you can always slice the crossbars to be more accommodating. You can even transport cargo and ski carriers as well as bicycles with this rack!
3. TMS Kayak Top Mount Carrier
Another pick for your consideration is the TMS kayak top mount carrier. This too has a steel base as well as wraparound padding that you can slide up or down to keep your kayak in place. You won’t have to worry about your precious kayak getting scraped up on your RV thanks to these pads.
The J bar with its wide mouth makes getting your kayak set up on the roof rack easier than ever before. You’ll also find it’s quite simple to unload when you arrive in your RV and you want to hit the water.
While you do have to assemble this kayak rack yourself, all the hardware you need for mounting is included. Just make sure your kayak weighs 75 pounds or less and has a width of 36 inches and it should work just fine. TMS even includes dual phone cases for smartphones that are 5 ¾ inches each. Cool!
4. AA Products Inc. X27 Roof Rack with Ladder Stoppers
You have your pick of ways to order this AA Products X27 kayak rack for your RV. You can get it with two or three bars, some of which are designed for a high roof (such as that of your motorhome) and others with a rear cargo roller bar. You can also choose from such colors as matte white and matte black for the rack, so whichever matches your RV the closest.
The X27 will impress with its features, such as adjustable ladder stoppers (for every bar, you get two stoppers), Gauge Grade No. 10 steel thickness (which is 3.78 millimeters), and protective rubber surfaces for less metal-on-metal scraping. Your rubber covers attach to the upright clamps.
You can also toggle with the middle bar, moving it higher or lower depending on the size of your kayak. With a lock design boasting three bolts, you don’t need to worry so much about the security of your kayak on the roof of your RV once you hit the road.
5. Rhino Rack Folding J-Style Kayak Carrier
Next, we’ve got the Rhino Rack folding J-style kayak carrier. You can also use this to travel with a canoe if you enjoy those. While it comes in a single color, black, this sturdy carrier has rubber tube padding so you don’t damage your RV while carrying your kayak on the roof.
The base of the rack itself is made of steel tubing that’s treated with a powder-coat finish (which Rhino Rack calls “state of the art”). One thing you’ll quite like is this rack arrives to your doorstep ready to use. There’s no need to pull out the drill and other mounting equipment, as it’s preassembled.
You will need to mount the rack to your RV roof of course, but Rhino Rack says their product has a universal mounting system. It should work with any type of crossbar your RV happens to have. For extra security, you get four straps for holding your kayak in place.
6. JDM Auto Lights Two-Pair Universal Top Mount Carrier Roof Rack
If you need a roof rack on the cheap, you can get two in one order from JDM Auto Lights. These also work for storing both kayaks and canoes atop your RV. Both roof racks are the same, in that they include a J-style bar with a wide mouth that makes loading your kayak and then unloading it a breeze.
The rust-resistant coating sprayed on the metal surfaces of these racks will keep them looking their best longer, even if they do happen to get wet from your dripping kayak post-ride. The metal is heavy-duty steel, by the way, sure to safely transport your kayak to and fro with less wear and tear.
7. TMS J-Bar HD Kayak Carrier
Our last pick is another one from TMS, this time their J-bar HD kayak carrier. It’s no wonder this is an Amazon’s Choice product, as it can also hold skis, surfboards, and even small boats. Your kayak must weigh 75 pounds or less and have a width of about 36 inches. Otherwise, try any of the other great kayak racks on this list.
The carrier itself is 6.5 inches tall, 12.5 inches wide, and 17.5 inches long. It includes on/off hardware so you can quickly and easily install it and then take it off your RV if you don’t want to bring your kayak on your next trip. If you have a spouse or family member who’s not a huge fan of you using the kayak rack on the RV, then this one ought to be a good compromise.
TMS’ carrier is steel and has long pads around the base to prevent friction between the carrier and your kayak. You will have to put it together yourself, but it includes all you need and comes labeled so you won’t have a hard time with the job.
The freedom to bring your kayak on your RV adventures sounds like a dream come true. Now, with a kayak rack, you can explore beautiful oceans, vast rivers, and other stunning bodies of water whenever you want. Adventure is never too far away, and you now won’t miss a second of it.