6 Best Kayak Carts 2018

Moving your kayak from one place to another can be fairly difficult on your own but with the use of a kayak cart, it can be made into an effortless task. The wheels support the weight of the kayak and you simply just push it to the water no matter the terrain.

The best kayak cart is the Suspenz Smart Airless DLX, which has 10 inch airless tires and a powder coated aluminum frame that holds up to 125 LBS.

Depending upon the cost of your kayak will sway the decision of the amount you are willing to spend on a kayak cart. They range in price massively with some featuring qualities such as airless tires, corrosion-free frames, large weight capacities and more.

Best Kayak Dollies

Kayak CartAttachmentLoading Capacity
Suspenz Smart DLXStraps125 LBS
Malone Auto RacksScupper Holes200 LBS
C-TugStraps300 LBS
Apex KC-DOLLY-SEATStraps250 LBS
TMS DeluxeStraps120 LBS
YaheetechScupper Holes120 LBS

Kayak carts are often called dollies and can be used for all terrains that include road, sand, water, rocks and more. The terminology “work smarter, not harder” very much applies to the transportation of kayak and a simple kayak cart can make a world of difference because kayaks can be heavy, long and just awkward to carry.

On top of awkwardness, if you have been on the kayak all day, the last thing you want to be doing is carrying a heavy kayak to its place of storage.

There is a wide variety of choice when it comes to choosing the type of kayak cart with some being more beneficial in certain situations. Below is a list of the best kayak carts that make carrying the kayak on all terrains effortless.

Suspenz Smart Airless DLX Cart


The Suspenz Smart DLX kayak cart uses 10 inch airless tires that can hold up to 125 LBS with ease. The main benefit to airless tires is of course that they will never go flat or have a puncture. It also features rubber pads to hold the kayak, which are far more durable than the standard foam padding, which is more common on carts.

In terms of the frame, it is a powder coated aluminum frame and it uses all stainless steel hardware. This is fairly important as corrosion can build up quickly when mixed with saltwater that drips down from the kayaks.

You will have to pay a premium for this kayak cart but its built to last with the sturdy frame, airless wheels and rubber padding. It is the best kayak cart you can buy and will easily last many years of heavy usage.

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Malone Scupper Kayak Cart


Malone is a premium brand when it comes to the kayaking industry with many high quality products from trailer to roof carriers available. In terms of the Malone kayak cart, their Scupper model features a variable width locking control that adjust from 6.5 to 16.5 inches to make it a universal kayak cart for sit on kayaks.

The two adjustable height scuppers make it fairly easy to place your kayak onto the cart and the durable foam pad provides maximum hull protection. In terms of the holding capacity, the aluminum frame will take any kayak that weigh up to 200 LBS.

Overall, it is the best kayak cart for sit on kayaks with scupper holes and being made by Malone, you have the peace of mind with regards to the quality.

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C-Tug Kayak & Canoe Cart

The majority of kayak carts have a holding capacity of 200 LBS and under but not the C-Tug. With a loading capacity of 300 LBS, this kayak cart is able to handle the biggest of kayaks with easy. The impressive strength and lightness of the cart itself is made possible by the polymer construction and stainless steel reinforced axles.

The sturdy, simple and intuitive design of the C-Tug makes it one of the easiest to use and weighing at just 8 LBS, it is fairly portable too.

If you have a heavy kayak, this kayak cart is the one for you and better still, it is a tool-free assembly of this cart. Simply set it up in seconds, place you kayak on the rubber pads and you can transport your kayak to wherever it needs to be.

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Apex KC-DOLLY-SEAT Dolly


The Apex is a unique kayak cart because it doubles up as a seat with back support. On top of this it has a large loading capacity at 250 LBS whilst using tie-down straps to hold onto your kayak securely.

In terms of the construction, it is V shaped and uses an aluminum frame and rubber bumpers to secure the kayak. The rubber tires provide plenty of traction on all terrains whilst carrying a single kayak.

Overall, it is a multi-use kayak cart with a large loading capacity so that its suitable with a range of kayaks. Even though the seat is low to the ground, it is still a seat that no other kayak carts have and can make a world of difference when you have been on your feet all day.

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TMS Deluxe Kayak Dolly


For those that are not looking to spend a large quantity of money on a kayak cart but want something that will last, then the TMS cart is something you should take a look at. It is constructed of aluminium and anodized stainless steel and has a holding capacity of 120 LBS where the hull sits on a V shaped cradle.

For stabilizing the kayak on top of the cart, included are 12 foot tie down straps and the TMS kayak cart features a double leg kickstand for easy loading.

Overall, it is by far one of the more popular kayak carts due to its price but with the addition of some intuitive features, it makes it excellent value for money.

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Yaheetech Kayak Cart For Sit-On-Top


If the Malone Sit-On-Top kayak cart is too pricey, then the Yaheetech alternative may be the better option. It is made from a durable aluminum frame and has a maximum loading capacity of 120 LBS.

This sit-on-top cart is designed to fit kayaks that have scupper holes of at least 3/4 inch in diameter otherwise it will not be compatible. It features two 9.4 inch wheels, powder coated frame, strengthened rubber bumpers and more.

Overall, it is a cheap kayak cart but if you can afford the Malone alternative, you are best of going for that option. This is because you are paying for the quality and the Malone wins in that department and it has more protection for your kayak too.

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Kayak Cart Buying Guide

After purchasing a kayak, you will have to learn a lot of information about the kayak and one of them being the importance of owning a kayak cart.

Kayaks are never easy to move from one point to another, therefore, having a kayak cart makes it a lot easier to move them around. Using the cart, you will be able to transport your kayak from your house to either a recreational or fishing area. Furthermore, the trolley comes in handy, particularly when moving the kayak in regions where maneuverability is difficult without a set of wheels. Below are some of the factors that you should consider before purchasing a kayak cart.

Size of Your Kayak

When picking out a kayak cart, pick one that is almost the same size as your kayak and never smaller. It is because a cart approximately the same size as your kayak balances better as you are riding the trolley, something a smaller kayak cannot offer thus increasing the incidences of your kayak toppling over.

Cart’s Frame Material

While choosing a kayak cart, opt for one capable of withstanding abuse. Therefore when selecting a frame, choose one made from aluminum which is more resilient than plastic and also lighter than steel.

Type of Terrain

Majority of the lakes and rivers have entirely different terrains some being altogether rocky whereas others have sticky clay or extremely sandy. Therefore, you have to decide on a kayak cart that can withstand the terrain you frequently encounter so as not to get stuck or your kayak toppling over often.

kayak cart for sand

Kayak Cart Wheels

The two options here include going for the vast tire models which in some instances are inflatable or opting for the inexpensive plastic tires. However, the two have an enormous difference in performance despite the price difference being minimal.

The plastic wheels are usually thin and of small diameter subsequently easily get stuck thus you should keep away from them. On the other hand, the thicker and larger tires can get over objects and bumps easily due to their large diameters and their thicker surface enabling them to float on soft planes such as sand, unlike thin wheels which often sink and get stuck.

Method of Attachment

The two most common attachment methods of kayak carts include the handmade kayak dolly and the DIY types. The handmade kayak dolly is the scupper drain model which works only on kayaks that have scupper holes found below some kayaks where the craft self-drains. For the DIY model, the kayak cart folds out when it is not being used and is capable of expanding when positioned under the kayaks.

The Type of Straps

Quick straps are just as useful as the upgraded ratchet straps which are only necessary when for instance tying down a car. Therefore, if you have a lightweight kayak trolley, ratchet straps are not needed.

There are many different kayak models available in the market thus you must be very careful before picking one that suits your needs.

Types of Kayak Carts

There exist numerous kayak designs on the market with some better than others in a specific role. Therefore, it is up to you to decide if you would prefer the budget-friendly kayak carts which are constructed from weak metals and mostly have pneumatic wheels that often get punctured. You can also go for the more expensive kayak cart might which might be an excellent fit for you since they are appropriate for a diverse range of canoes and kayaks plus they have robust plastic designs.

Sit-On-Top Trolley

Just as the name implies, this type of trolley is best for most of the sit-on-top kayaks, and its design exploits the scupper holes existing on the kayak. Through the holes passes two erect metal prongs of the trolley into the kayak’s scupper holes thus holding it in place, a process that is relatively simple and easy.

Nevertheless, the main drawback of using this trolley is that application of too much force might result in the metal damaging the plastic since the metal prongs are resting against the plastic scupper gaps. Thus this type of cart is only ideal for lightweight single-seat-on-top kayaks, and it is advisable to use a buckle strap to hold the kayak in place securely. Consequently, this decreases the movement between the scupper holes and the metal prong thus preventing damage to the kayak.

Lastly, these trolleys are made from quality grade alloys that have heavy duty side clips, robust soldered seams and large all-terrain, puncture-proof tires and is still lightweight despite being strong and sturdy.

using a kayak doly

Kayak Trolley

This cart is an excellent choice for a majority of the single-seater sit-in kayaks, be it the lesser recreational touring kayak or, the bigger day touring kayaks. Additionally, this trolley is ideal for small to medium sized sit-on-top kayaks.

It employs a ‘drop-on-top’ kind of design where the kayak is put on top of the trolley and held in place using a strap. You can place the trolley anywhere along the kayak’s body, but it is advisable to place it at approximately 2/3rds of the way along the body.

These trolleys come with a sturdy design and have rubber grips on the top to firmly hold in place the body of the kayak. Moreover, it comes with small legs, and wheels are puncture-proof and great for all-terrains. The kit comprises a cam buckle strap which firmly grips the kayak to the trolley, with some hull shape designs having better contact with the rubber grips than others.

Canoe Trolley

This trolley is a bigger version of the kayak trolley featuring a more extensive, wider frame well capable of carrying broader and more massive hulls. This type of cart is perfect for Canadian canoes and bigger sit-on-tops such as fishing kayaks and tandems.

Features of this cart include compact puncture-proof tires, robust metal frames with rubber body grips and fold-out legs which become very useful when you are loading and offloading your vessel. Furthermore, it is convenient to fasten your kayak on the trolley using a roof-rack strap with the amount of contact between the rubber grips and the hull varying due to different hull designs of crafts.

Railblaza C-Tug Trolley

Railblaza’s C-Tug trolley is one that can do-it-all and is made from sturdy composite plastic which can endure many years of saltwater use and exposure. It has large supportive pads which can tilt and automatically adjust to the body shape of the vessel. Therefore, this trolley can support every kayak and canoe and has an enormous load rating of 120 kilograms. Furthermore, it can be used with windsurfs, surfboards and SUP due to its pad’s ability to go completely flat.

The trolley’s features include durable, all-terrain wheels, with the option of going for the C-Tug Sandtrakz trolley which has bigger wheels. Pads on the cart are rubberized therefore have an excellent grip on the hull of the craft, and a strap and cam buckle is provided for adjustment.

Conclusion

If you are fed up of carrying around your kayak, investing into a kayak cart will be the best thing you ever do. There are many cheap alternatives but the recommendations within this article cover all the basics and are built to last.

We advise that you stay clear of kayak dollies that use standard rubber tires that could possibly become flat. If you have a flat tire on your cart, it will make dragging the kayak and cart much harder.

Some kayak carts can be used for canoes and inflatable boats too and with the likes of the Apex, they can even double up as a seat.

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