Getting down to the lake may sound fun, but carrying a kayak to get there is not!
The next time you feel like you will be struggling with your kayak due to its weight, try using a kayak cart to help you out.
Although there are quite a number of these two wheeled devices which provide even more features and benefits, you will likely find it difficult to determine which model works best for you.
Check out some of the best kayak carts we reviewed to find the best one for you.
Have you ever had to move your kayak more than 50 feet, especially all by yourself, then you’ve surely had the idea of using a kayak cart.
What is a kayak cart and how does it work? Basically it makes it possible for you to roll your kayak around. It’s like a golf bag trolley with wheels attached.
In a perfect world, you would never have to lift your kayak, but if that is the case, let’s say from the car to the put-in, or your house to the put-in, the idea of a kayak cart might be just what you’re looking for.
Types of kayak carts.
The Trolley is generally a metal or plastic frame that is used to support the hull of the kayak, and it is leaned on two metal or plastic wheels.
The C-Tug is a very popular type of kayak trolley.
Carts like this typically have 7- to 10- inch caster wheels attached to a platform that is tethered to the bottom of your kayak and held together by a strap.
They’re great for rough terrain or sandy areas. Because they can be attached to the middle of a boat, they take most of the load, so when wheeling it around, it is easy to maneuver it around.
Kayak dollies usually resemble a trailer designed for a boat. These can be a lot wider and longer than a trolley and some can extend up the full length of the kayak hull.
Those are great choices if you are planning to kayak with a companion or if you are planning to bring a lot of gear along with you.
Dollies are also useful for transporting your kayak on short distances.
A dolly is usually a two-wheeled trailer that offers greater stability than a trolley. They may also work for longer boats such as surf skis, and typically have longer and wider forks to hold the boat hull.
A kayak dolly is a specially made trailer that can be used to transport your kayak from one location to another. Although a kayak dolly can’t be folded or stored in the same way an ordinary trolley can, it is much easier to handle your kayak on distances that are up to 10 miles long.
A scupper cart was designed for use with kayaks, however, because it is only made for kayaks that equip them with scuppers it is not for use with canoes.
Scuppers are holes in a sit-on top kayak that facilitate drainage of water to keep the kayak dry and comfortable.
A kayak’s scupper cart has two arms that go into these holes from the bottom.
There are additional holes in the arms to allow drainage of water into the scupper cart. There is a drain plug under the scupper cart that allows for easy drainage.
The scupper cart has a center attachment point for securing one end of a kayak strap to it. The other end of the kayak strap secures to itself and then can be looped around a rod or branch and attached to it so that the cart cannot roll away. This, however, defeats its purpose and is not recommended as it makes it impossible to move the kayak from one place on land to another without unhooking it from the rod or branch before moving.
Scupper carts are made of Delrin plastic, with Delrin being the material most commonly used in the highest quality kayak scupper systems.
The scupper cart is useful for any kayak that has a place to attach it at the bottom of it. It allows for easy and convenient water drainage from your kayak.
This product is an ideal solution if your boat has scuppers.
Once you have thought of, and perhaps even used a kayak cart, the next question is whether they make a motorized kayak cart?
Thus far there hasn’t been any introduced to the market. You can find a lot of different design ideas out there in forums. Some people have even designed these themselves.
Picking a kayak cart
A kayak cart should be carefully considered before purchasing just like any other piece of sporting equipment.
What are your budget and weight requirements?
Budget is a major factor to consider when choosing kayak carts, since prices range from 50 to more than1000.
If you’re going to be using it all the time, and you’ re planning on hauling a heavy, fully loaded kayak, perhaps you should invest a bit more.
It’s probably not worth spending a lot of money if your cart won’t be used more than three times over the summer.
The cart can also be hard to store.
No one wants a six-foot kayak trolley in their living room for the winter.
Your local outfitter can give you a good idea of the best product for you.
Features of Kayak Carts
The following features are worth considering when you’re looking for the best kayak cart:
Steel or aluminum carts are the most common.
The needs of kayakers vary depending on where they kayak.
Aluminium is better than steel in saltwater conditions (since it does not corrode).
Every kayak cart model comes with a weight limit. Many can handle heavy weights, but be careful not to overdo it.
Look for a cart that has enough capacity to hold your entire kayak at 80% of its capacity.
If you’re loading up your kayak with gear, you’ll want to calculate that as well.
Kayak Cart Wheel Type — There are basically two different types of wheels: air-filled and airless.
Despite looking brittle, airless wheels are best on rocky, difficult terrain.
The air-filled ones might be better on sand or gravel, however, you do have to use a pump.
It’s generally safer to go with airless wheels, except in some very unique cases.
A kayak cart’s wheel width is one of the most important features to consider.
Where are you going to transport your kayak?
Think about it this way: a wheel is more maneuverable if it is wider, so it will handle treacherous terrain better.
Conversely, it might be harder to pull.
On the other hand, if your wheels are thinner, you can get around corners easier while turning.
Kayak carts may come with extra accessories such as bumper pads to prevent damage to your kayak.
A kayak cart should be placed close to your boat.
You need a cart nearby if you’re lifting the boat off a vehicle.
Place the kayak on the kayak cart. Use the attachment devices on the cart to secure it to the kayak.
Then lift and pull the boat along the side of the kayak cart or bow handle.
Place the kayak inside the cart.
Attach the kayak to the frame again and pull it toward you as you push it forward with your paddle on land.
Use this Kayak Cart in areas where there’s no need for speed, because it doesn’t allow you to go very fast. Keep in mind that you’ll go at a pace identical to how fast you can walk. If you want to move faster than that, a dog scooter might be more your speed. If not, then walking is about all you can do with this cart.
The kayak cart is able to get you from point A to point B and back again.
When choosing a kayak cart, we recommend getting one that has padded straps as well as a carry handle for easy transport. It should also be lightweight, small enough that it can fit in the trunk of your car, and sturdy enough to handle rainy days or water-heavy loads.
Best Kayak Cart Reviews
C-Tug Kayak Trolley Cart
This is a breeze to assemble. What’s more – you don’t even need tools to do it.
Rubber treads on the wheels ensure traction on a variety of surfaces.
Kayak carts from C-Tug weigh as little as ten pounds, so they are simple to lift and transport.
The cart’s lightweight design may fool you, but it can hold upto 300 pounds, so it’s perfect for kayaks and canoes as well.
Wilderness Systems Heavy-Duty
Its 450-pound capacity makes the Wilderness Systems Heavy-Duty perfect for most boats.
It makes loading and unloading easy, since it doesn’t need a kickstand or scupper posts.
CAMBA Universal Kayak, Canoe, and Paddleboard Carrier
The hemispherical wheels are mounted on floating axles which make them suitable for most terrain types.
As a result of this, the weight is evenly distributed. Making it easy to traverse even the most inaccessible terrain while towing your kayak.
Despite its modest weight capacity, the 110 lb capacity is adequate for most kayaks.
It isn’t designed to carry the heaviest canoes. Designed to make navigating rough terrain a breeze, this kayak cart is the best in its class.
These 10” wheels can’t be easily punctured. Sealed stainless steel bearings are housed in polypropylene hubs to give this product a high-quality appearance.
The cart in its entirety can be dismantled and stashed in your kayak’s hull or your vehicle.
These features make this well suited for rough terrain.
ABN Universal Kayak Carrier
If the kayak that is being carried is less than 200 pounds, then this cart is the perfect cart for you.
A lightweight and durable anodized steel frame ensures durability and keeps the cart light and easy to move around.
With tires that inflate easily, you can travel smoothly through sand, gravel, and wooded areas.
It also comes with 12 feet of strap that secures the kayak.
Simply fold it up and toss it into your backpack when you’re finished.
Suspenz Smart Airless DLX Kayak Cart
With airless 10” wheels, this cart from Suspenz will never get punctured despite how hard or how long you use it.
It comes with stainless steel parts, so it should last a long time.
Simply place your kayak on the rubber pads and you’re ready to go.
The cart folds into a mesh bag that can be carried easily.
TMS Kayak Cart Carrier Trolley
This kayak cart has a carrying capacity of 150 pounds, and has a 12 foot strap for added stability.
Metal frame, plastic bumpers and foam arm guards work to protect your kayak, but may not be ideal for saltwater.
On sand or gravel, the wheels roll smoothly, and can be easily disassembled for transportation.
Steel and aluminum are great options if you need something sturdy.
Malone Clipper Deluxe Universal Kayak Cart
Malone Clipper Deluxe comes with tie-down straps to secure your kayak, and the frame is universal so any kayak will fit.
The kayak will be safe on any terrain due to the padded frame.
The 10-inch airless tires last forever, and even support 200 pounds.
The kickstand keeps it in place when loading or unloading.
Bonnlo Scupper Kayak Cart Carrier
Only sit-on-top kayaks or kayaks with scupper holes will fit into this cart.
These scupper holes meant for drainage are found in most sit-on-top kayaks.
Installed on a sturdy platform with two scupper holders, it is the better sit-on-top carrier for kayakers.
The width can be adjusted from 6.5 inches to about 16.5 inches, so it should fit any sit on top boat.
The width adjustment operates by rotating a friction screw, so it can be adjusted endlessly within its desired range.
When the wheels are taken off, the design is almost entirely flat.
Hobie Plug In
With a maximum weight capacity of 150 pounds, the Hobie Plug In has a relatively low weight capacity. It’s good for light craft and is well-made. It should last for years with no failures in any of the components.
Attwood Kayak and Canoe Cart
This company has been creating quality products for the marine industry for more than 150 years. This kayak cart too is very well designed.
With a 100 lb. weight limit, this kayak cart is slightly less than most other kayak carts today. But should work for most kayaks.
Large wheels that cannot deflate make this cart well suited for all terrains.
You can easily take this cart along and not have to worry about securing it to your car afterwards.
This model has a simple design and the marketing is not over-hyped.
Simply puts, it does what the job, and does it really well.