A kayak trailer makes loading and transporting your kayaks really easy. Lifting kayaks or canoes onto a roof rack and taking them down again can be a nuisance, especially on your own.
With a trailer, you don’t have to lift your kayaks quite so high which makes it much easier and quicker to load and unload. Another great benefit is that the kayaks are being pulled behind the car which causes much less wind resistance that increases gas mileage.
What Makes the Best Boat Trailer?
Before you decide to purchase a boat trailer you need to consider the main features of a good trailer to give you an idea of what will suit your requirements best. Below are some of the most important things you need to consider:
Towing a trailer requires a hitch.
If your vehicle does not have a trailer hitch you will have to purchase one and get it fitted. If you consider that a trailer can carry four or five kayaks plus a bunch of gear and make your life a lot easier, this is a worthy investment.
Size of the trailer.
The number of boats you want to carry and the amount of gear you want to store will determine the size of the trailer you purchase.
Storage when not in use.
Some trailers come with folded parts that allow you to store them in a small space in the garage. It is a good idea to measure the space where you plan to store the trailer to make sure it will fit.
Strength and durability.
Most trailers are made of steel which makes them durable, strong, and long-lasting. Some have a galvanized coating for extra protection from rust and corrosion which is ideal for coastal environments.
– Protective racks with padding come standard with some trailers to keep your boats safe during transit. Separate racks and accessories can be purchased to fulfill the same purpose if the trailer you plan on purchasing does not have racks.
One of the most important features of a kayak trailer is how easy it is to maneuver fully loaded with the maximum amount of boats and gear. A trailer with a lightweight frame is easier to move around.
A good suspension system is important for a smoother ride, especially when traveling over rough terrain. If you plan to use your trailer mainly on paved roads, you will not need a trailer with a suspension system. However, if you often travel off-road to discover the best paddling zones, a suspension system will prevent your boats from bouncing around too much.
Tongue length is the distance between the trailer’s axle and the hitch.
This is an important factor to consider as it will determine the length of the boats the trailer can carry and how easy it will be to tow. A shorter tongue length lessens the chances of carrying longer yaks and makes it more difficult to reverse in a straight line.
A longer tongue length will allow you to carry longer yaks and makes it less likely to jackknife. It will also be easier to travel in a straight line when backing up.
Smaller wheels may lower the loading platform but they will wear out more quickly. Larger tires will cost less in the long run as they need fewer rotations to cover the same distance as smaller tires.
The main things to check is maximum weight capacity of the trailer and whether it can carry the length of the vessel. Many kayak trailers have the capacity to carry tandems and some can extend to carry longer length yaks. These special trailers are designed to handle wider tandems and multiple yaks.
– Multi-purpose yak trailers can transport a few boats at a time which makes it ideal for groups traveling together or families who love to paddle together. Check the weight capacity of the trailer and the maximum number of vessels of varying lengths and widths it can carry. Multi-yak trailers are capable of carrying SUPs and even bikes as well as canoes and kayaks. If you have a wife, a couple of kids, a dog, a few kayaks, and maybe a bike or two, a multi-yak trailer is the ideal way to go.
Now that you have a better idea of the different things to consider when buying a kayak trailer you will more likely be able to choose just the right one for you. If you mostly paddle on your own a trailer that can carry up to two kayaks may suit you better, but keep in mind that a trailer can carry more than just kayaks and canoes. It can be also be loaded with other recreational equipment such as boards, off-road bikes, and anything else you can think of putting it to use for.