ADARAC ALUMINUM PRO SERIES TRUCK BED RACK
When we looked to replace our 14-foot travel trailer, we decided to buy a Forest River Shockwave Toy Hauler. Usually people buy toy haulers to haul their ATVs or motorcycles, but we got it to haul our kayaks. This is what the trailer looked like with the kayaks inside before we (I say “we” euphemistically – my wife Donna did the remodel) remodeled it.
This worked fine for us when we could go straight to our destination, but it got tedious taking the kayaks out and putting them back in when we had to stop multiple times.
To overcome this issue Donna decided to purchase an ADARAC aluminum pro series truck bed rack. She also purchased EXTREMA roof rack pads, four in total, for the front and back racks. We got these at Austin Canoe and Kayak, but you can get similar products on Amazon. Note the straps that help keep in in place. Each pad is 30 inches long, so two fit nicely on the roof rack. We like these, but you can get less expensive ones (or, for that matter, more expensive ones, on Amazon). The roof rack, after installation, looked like this.
So far, so good. There was an obstacle to installation, however. Our F-150 comes with two cutouts in the back of the side rail of the truck that can be used for tie downs.
However, the pocket stake in the front of the truck was covered by the side rail, so Donna had to actually cut through the side rail in the front of the truck so she could get to the pocket stake. To do this, she had to spend a lot of time on YouTube to see how others did it and to figure out where the stake pocket was located underneath the rail. After that she was able to attach the kayak rack to the front of the truck.
I’m making this seem very simple, but there had to be a lot of attention to detail. I am burdened with a short attention span so, once again, Donna took the lead on that.
Finally, we could put the kayaks on the rack. The key was to put the front of the kayak over the front rack first, push it forward, and then put the back end on the back rack. Trying to lift the kayaks up ad over the rack would have resulted in some type of disaster.
There was one other precaution we took – we got cockpit covers for the kayak. We tried two. One was good and the other was not. I used the not-so-good cover and, since we drove through numerous rain storms, the inside of my kayak (where I had stored my PFD, skirt, etc.) got soaked.
Donna uses the Seals Cockpit Seal, while I used the Seals Neoprene Kayak Cockpit Cover. The Seals Cockpit Seal was supposed to be waterproof, whereas the Seals Neoprene Kayak Cockpit Cover allows “seepage” if water pools on it. Unfortunately, we drove through torrential downpours. The Cockpit Seal performed as advertised, but the Cockpit Cover did water to seep into my cockpit. That may not be the fault of the Cockpit Cover, though. My kayak is a Dagger Mamba and I have found that water gets into the cockpit just when it is on the river. My Jackson kayak, does not get water in it. In any event, we use the Cockpit Cover when we are storing our kayaks in the garage. It keeps the mice out!
You can click on the links below to be taken to an Amazon page where you can purchase the above items.
Seals Cockpit Seal
Seals Neoprene Kayak Cockpit Cover
Below is an Amazon link to the ADARACK Kayak Rack.
Amazon Prime is particularly useful for big products like the kayak rack — free shipping! Below is a link to a free trial of Amazon Prime. Use it only once if you like to get something large.