Top Kayak Carts of 2022

Canoes and Kayaks

As kayakers, we all know the struggle of lugging our kayaks to and from the water, especially if you have to carry it any significant distance. However, with a kayak cart, this can be done with ease.

That’s why I’ve put together this list of the top kayak carts for 2022. So read on to find out which one is right for you.

Kayak Carts Table of Contents

What is a Kayak Cart?

Kayak carts or kayak trolleys are designed to help you transport a kayak without lugging it around yourself. It generally has two wheels. Although it won’t eliminate your effort completely, it will substantially reduce it. And you might start wondering how you ever functioned without a kayak cart.

kayak cart

Is a Kayak Cart Necessary?

A kayak cart is not essential – you can still kayak perfectly well without it. But a kayak cart can be of a lot of help. It reduces the effort and fatigue that goes into carrying the kayak around. Heaving the kayak can cause issues with your body especially if you have back and shoulder problems. Even if you’re really fit and strong, you might still want to save up on your energy and use it for paddling instead.

Having a kayak cart will also reduce the number of trips you make to the shore. It usually takes more than two trips to get everything to the launch site without a cart. You can get it all done in one trip with a kayak cart! (or max 2)

Whether or not to purchase a kayak cart is dependent on what kind of kayak you have. If it’s really heavy, you probably would want to invest in a cart. On the other hand, if it is lightweight, you may not mind carrying it to the shore, and the idea of a kayak cart may not sound as appealing.

How do you keep a Kayak on a Cart?

As kayaks are long and bulky, securing them onto your cart can sometimes be tricky. To ensure your kayak stays on your cart, you’ll want to strap it in place. Most kayak trolley carts come with a strapping system included, however they can sometimes be inefficient. If you need extra strapping this can be achieved using ratchet straps, which are readily available online or at most hardware stores. Ratchet straps are secure and very easy to use, making them an ideal option.

All you will need to do is put the strap over the kayak where the cart is and hook the ends onto the cart. If it feels too loose, use the lever on the ratchet to tighten it. If you need to loosen the strap, there should be a section to press to release the tightening function.

Types of Kayak Carts

Plug-In Cart

Plug-In carts are stable because they have fixed wheels. These carts work by “plugging in” your kayak through the scupper holes. Although convenient and easy to use, these carts are better suited for sit-on-top kayaks.

Folding Kayak Cart

This type of kayak cart is quite popular among kayakers because of its ability to fold. The folding cart not only transports kayaks easily but can be stored easily, taking up less space.

Strap Cart

This kayak cart has a strap that fastens over the kayak. Because of its strap design, it can support different models of kayaks. You will only need to make sure that your kayak is strapped securely.

End Kayak Cart

This is a kayak trolley cart where you can place the end of your kayak and carry the rest, much like a wagon. They are helpful and easy to use as they don’t require any straps, but they are not compatible with larger-sized models of kayaks.

Features to look for when Purchasing a Kayak Cart

Kayak Cart Wheels

Having the right kayak cart wheels according to the terrain is of the utmost importance. If you pick a cart with the wrong wheels, you may end up doing more work than you do without a cart.

Large wheels, being the most stable, are best for uneven terrains. Rubber wheels will work well, too, because they are shock absorbent. Airless foam-filled tires or molded plastic are great for rocky grounds since there is very little chance of a puncture. Big air-filled wheels are recommended for a sandy beach area as they do not sink into the sand.

Kayak Width

Kayaks have different widths based on the brand and model. Therefore, you must ensure your kayaks trolley cart can carry the kayak width. Some kayaks carts can adjust up to 10 inches to accommodate different-sized kayaks.

Cart Construction Material

Most kayak carts are made of aluminum or steel. For seawater, aluminum is good because it will not corrode easily. Plastic or composite is a good choice too. For freshwater, both aluminum and steel would do.

Foldable Kayak Cart

Some carts can disassemble or are foldable, saving you storage space. You can then take it with you on the kayak.  This is an excellent feature for portaging between two water bodies. 

Weight Capacity

It’s essential to ensure the cart you buy will support whatever weight is needed. Most carts have a capacity of at least 100 lbs – this should suffice for most people, but if your boat is on the larger side, you may need to check that the cart you’re buying can handle it.

Best Kayak Carts for 2022

Railblaza Kayak Cart

Wheel Type: High grip rubber tread puncture-free wheels
Frame Material: Reinforced composite material
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: ‎22.72 x 11.85 x 7.83 inches
Loading Limit: 300 lbs

Made in New Zealand, the Railblaza claims to have a tool-free disassembly in 20 seconds. It is made from non-corroding materials that will not rust, so we reckon it is suitable for use in seawater. Although they claim to suit all terrains, use on asphalt or concrete may cause premature wear and tear. So perhaps they are a better fit for sands and trails.

What we like:
✅ Can haul multiple SUPs Stacked together
✅ Easy to assemble

We don’t like:
⛔️ Tires don’t work well on asphalt or concrete

ABN Universal Kayaking Cart

Wheel Type: Rubber Wheels
Frame Material: Plastic, Metal (anodized steel), Rubber
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: 22 x 9.2 x 13 inches
Loading Limit: 200 lbs

The ABN Universal kayaking cart is made from high anodized strength and durable steel, so your kayak trolley will last a long time. It can be disassembled and thereby is easy to transport. Although foldable, it is reported to still take up sizable space in a kayak. You can reduce this even more as the wheels are easily removed with a lynchpin. If you do this make sure you keep the lynchpins safely stored. (In the frame is the best practice)

What we like:
✅ Oversized foam pads that protect the kayak
✅ Folds to a compact size

We don’t like:
⛔️ The strap is not strong enough to stay intact when going up and down stairs

Bonnlo Kayaking Trolley

Wheel Type: Solid airless tires
Frame Material: Aluminum, anodized stainless steel
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: ‎28.8 x 16.7 x 6.2 inches
Loading Limit: 200 lbs

Bonnlo is an easy-to-assemble and good-quality cart. The ratchet straps add to the flexibility but do not fasten the kayak to the cart firmly. Although the spring-loaded bolts make it easy for the kayak cart to be folded when need be, they are the reason why Bonnlo collapses into itself when hitting objects. This can be fixed by tightening the bolts. The kickstand also only allows minimal ground clearance when tucked up and slightly better when left untucked. This could be an issue over rough, uneven terrain.

What we like:
✅ Universal carrier for boats, kayaks, canoes
✅ Works well on asphalt or concrete

We don’t like:
⛔️ Collapses into itself when it hits objects

Seattle Sports Kayak Cart

Wheel Type: Rugged air-less tires
Frame Material: Steel
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: ‎30.4 x 18 x 8.3 inches
Loading Limit: 300 lbs

The ATC kayak cart has adjustable bars and a cinch trap to accommodate heavier boats. It can be used to load canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, and other water vehicles. The frame is reliable and strong but does not have wheel bearings or spokes to match. Whilst great for use over rugged terrain, a hand pump would be a worthy bring-along item in case the tyres deflate.  This model cart is best with an extra ratchet strap.

What we like:
✅ Well-designed frame
✅ Wheels pivot in for when you want to store the cart

We don’t like:
⛔️ The straps are not sturdy

Suspenz Kayak Cart

Wheel Type: Quick release airless tires
Frame Material: Aluminum
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: 28.5 x 13.5 x 6 inches
Loading Limit: 125 lbs

The Suspenz Smart Airless cart is loved by many. The cart is easy to assemble and disassemble, so one need not worry about storing it. The tires are rigid rubber, so the chances of a flat tire are slim. However, the lower cart straps are reported to be not as stable and sometimes slip off. Additional ratchet straps are an easy solution to the strapping.

What we like:
✅ Easy to assemble
✅ Rigid tires, so no worries about flat tires

We don’t like:
⛔️ The lower straps that hold the cart together are not very sturdy

Wilderness Systems Kayak Cart

Wheel Type: Beach wheels
Frame Material: Aluminum
Storable by disassembling: Yes
Dimensions: ‎32 x 25.5 x 16 inches
Loading Limit: 450 lbs

Wilderness Systems is designed to transport the heaviest kayaks, with a loading capacity of up to 450 lbs. The cart is adaptable, and with a few twists, you can adjust it to fit different kayaks. Although the frame is made of good quality aluminum, the bolts are made from standard steel that will rust easily after a few dips in the water.

What we like:
✅ Two height options
✅ Works perfectly on rough terrain

We don’t like:
⛔️ The ratchet straps are not reliable

Conclusion

Kayak carts can be a helpful addition for a regular kayaker. It takes a great deal of work off your hands and leaves you with the energy for better paddling. However, there are many different features you need to look into before buying a kayak cart, as discussed above. We hope this article was a helpful guide for your next shopping trip!

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