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One of the toughest things about kayak fishing is actually getting the kayak to the water. This is a struggle that many people can attest to. This may be due to owning a smaller car, having an injury or a disability, and/or living in an urban area. This does not mean it is impossible; there are multiple ways to transport our, sometimes oversized, fishing model kayaks. Here I will show you how I safely transport my kayaks, especially my new Coosa FD.

Having a 4 door sedan while being new to the sport, my first approach to solving this riddle was car topping. This is a common approach and definitely achieves the goal. There are several companies that make a long list of products that ensure car topping is easy and safe. However, learning the hard way (a story for a different time) landed me on the path of using a small trailer.
The first thing I needed to take care of was having hitch installed on my Nissan Altima. A trailer is a great option to haul anything, but this opens up a new situation: You need a way to pull the trailer. After some online research and advice from friends, having Uhaul install a hitch was the most affordable and convenient way to go, considering I’m not exactly handy. After that, finding a small jet ski or utility trailer would be ideal for my smaller car to haul stuff around. Luckily enough, my mom had a small trailer that she used to tow motorcycles on road trips. If you do not want as much of a project and more of a good-to-go trailer, there are great companies like Tennessee Trailers, Malone, and Yakima who all have different models of trailers that are perfect for hauling kayaks and much more gear.

Having this basic trailer made transporting my kayak to and from the water a lot easier. I did not have to lift the Coosa as high into the air, and trust me, this is an amazing advantage after paddling all day long. The trailer is small and compact, making it easy to store in the off-season, and easy to move around without having to have it hooked up to the car all the time. After a few months of having the trailer, I began to research online on how to make it better suit my needs.

There are numerous options and projects you can do to tweak or improve a trailer for hauling kayaks. My advice is to remember where you personally have a had issues and only work on the things that will make your experience more efficient. With the need to haul multiple kayaks for friends or float trips, a truck rack was a necessary modification for my trailer. Clayton Haske, a great angler, friend, and teammate, helped me install the truck rack to my trailer to give me the ability to haul multiple kayaks.

Now that the rack has been installed, the next goal was to prep the bottom to hold a kayak without the sharp metal edges from scratching the Coosa FD and to keep the plate holding the lights and license plate from bending. A 24 inch section of 6 inch piece of PVC drain pipe did the trick to hold the kayak above the license plate and creates a surface to evenly strap the kayak to for hauling. Further towards the front of trailer, a 4 inch piece of PVC about 50 inches long will create a front surface to safely push the Coosa FD from behind to load onto the trailer. These PVC installations make loading the kayak much easier by keeping it low to the ground, creating safe surface to slide the kayak and tilts the Coosa FD towards the front of the trailer.

With this layout I can easily load my Jackson Kayak Coosa FD, HD and my wife’s cruise 12 for any sort of adventure we would plan to go on. I could also take some friends kayak fishing too I guess. This will also allow me to easily attach a cart to the Coosa FD before it is completely off the trailer to further ease the loading and unloading at the destination. There are many other trailer options, car topping or truck beds but this is the answer to my need of getting a kayak to the water.

– Ken Morris