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Best Kayak Rack for Subaru Forester

Best Kayak Rack for Subaru Forester

Subaru Forester has got all the features that a die-hard kayaker expects from an SUV. Riding on a Subaru Forester is smooth af when the condition of the road is excellent. Even when you are heading off-road, it still manages to offer comfortable a ride as Subaru Forester comes jam-packed with tons of innovative features. Now mounting a kayak on its roof should not be that complicated right? Well, you could not be more wrong.

To make your job easier, here we have handpicked some of the best kayak racks that you can install on Subaru Forester –

Best 6 Kayak Racks for
Subaru Forester

1. Rhino-Rack Nautic 570 Series Kayak/Canoe Carrier

Rhino-Rack Nautic 570 Series Kayak/Canoe Carrier is designed to fit a wide range of hull shapes. So, no matter how small or large your kayak is, chances are that it can be easily mounted on Rhino-Rack Nautic 570 Series Kayak/Canoe Carrier. The latest cutting-edge technology has been used in the making of this kayak career. What is even more interesting is the fact that the company has only employed those engineers who are deeply passionate about kayaking in the production process of this kayak career.

Side mounting is made possible thanks to its ability to rotate 180 degrees at any given moment.  Rhino-Rack Nautic 570 Series Kayak/Canoe Carrier comes fitted with 4 rubber pads that are designed specifically to cushion the impacts during the transportation process. It has got a wide surface area that ensures extra stability during the journey. Rhino-Rack Nautic 570 Series Kayak/Canoe Carrier is resistant to corrosion and it comes with 5 years warranty.

2. Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak Rack

Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak Rack is compatible with Subaru Forester and it can be installed on the roof without breaking a sweat. You can transport two kayaks at one go. Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak has got the shape of a j-Cradle but when the situation arises it gets itself transformed into two boat stackers position almost instantly. However, if you want to carry two kayaks, you might have to purchase an additional strap so that both the kayaks stay secured during the entire journey.

It can be folded down when not in use and this will definitely help you reduce wind resistance. The maximum weight capacity of this Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak Rack is around 130lbs.

Do you hate assembling stuff all by yourself? Well, you don’t have to if you decide to put your money on Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak Rack. It comes fully-assembled which is just amazing. Built to last, Thule Hull-a-Port XT Rooftop Kayak Rack is One that you must get your hands on if you are really into kayaking.  

3. SportRack SR5511 J Stacking Kayak Carrier

SportRack SR5511 J Stacking Kayak Carrier allows you to load a kayak from the side of your Subaru Forester. Does not that sound really cool? Irrespective of the shape of the hull of your kayak, you can easily get it mounted on this kayak rack without feeling exhausted at the end. SportRack SR5511 J Stacking Kayak Carrier has got a stable design and looks quite strong and durable. Use the tie-down straps to attach the bow and the stern of the kayak to the vehicle in case, you want to increase the safety level a notch further.  

All the contact points are padded with rubber so that the kayak does not end up developing scratches during the transportation process. The maximum weight capacity of this J-Cradle style kayak rack is around 75lbs. When you are not using it, you can get it removed from the roof and that too without using any tool whatsoever. Use cable locks or locking straps to get this SportRack SR5511 J Stacking Kayak Carrier locked to the crossbar.   

4. Thule 834 Hull-A-Port

Thule 834 Hull-A-Port looks sturdy and has got a nice sporting look. Made from heavy-duty plastic and resins, Thule 834 Hull-A-Port is going to last really long unless you are treating it terribly. Once the kayak is strapped down, it will not move an inch from its place. The straps are heavy-duty as well and they will not snap that easily. To stop the kayak’s bottom from getting rubbed, Thule 834 Hull-A-Port has added an ample amount of nylon cushion on its top and this will keep your kayak safe from accidental abrasion.

Remarkably stable, Thule 834 Hull-A-Port is extremely easy to install. You can even carry two kayaks at a time without jeopardizing the stability of the roof of the kayak. Only if the bolts were a little longer, Thule 834 Hull-A-Port could have been considered as the perfect kayak rack for all Subaru Forester lovers available there. It has got rust-resistant coating and its space-saving design will allow you to transport other gears and accessories on the roof of your car.

5. Thule 898000 Hullavator Pro Kayak/Canoe Carrier

Thule 898000 Hullavator Pro Kayak/Canoe Carrier will keep your kayak safe and secure while driving through the most treacherous terrains. If you are sick and tired of loading and unloading kayaks, you need to put your trust in this beast. Thule 898000 Hullavator Pro Kayak/Canoe Carrier makes loading and unloading of a kayak as easy as ABC. Gas-assist struts will do the heavy-lifting for you. So, all you have to do is to get this thing to install on the roof of your Subaru Forester and just lay back and relax.

8 contact points are padded carefully to keep the hull of the kayak safe from scratches. You can install two Thule 898000 Hullavator Pro Kayak/Canoe Carriers on the roof if you wish to transport multiple kayaks. The maximum weight capacity of a Thule 898000 Hullavator Pro Kayak/Canoe Carrier is around 35 kg which is more than enough for most kayakers out there.

6. Malone SeaWing Saddle Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier

Malone SeaWing Saddle Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier has got all the features that a kayaker usually expects to see in a kayak rack. It has got a very interesting mid-mount design that helps saving valuable space. You can mount two kayaks on it but it has to be mounted in bottom-down position. Be it round or square, Malone SeaWing Saddle Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier is compatible with most cross rails that are commonly available in the market.

Malone SeaWing Saddle Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier has got a low-key design. Its aerodynamic design helps to eliminate all wind resistance during the transportation process. The installation process is fairly simple and it can be taken off in a matter of a few minutes which is impressive. The frame is made from polycarbon which is itself highly resistant to corrosion. Rubber is used in the padded areas to keep the roof of your car safe from dents or any other damages.

What is Wrong With Outback’s Crossbars

Subaru Forester has slightly changed the shape of its bar so that the roof rails can easily be fitted into the existing crossbar system and this is exactly where the problem creeps in. This uniquely shaped crossbar is now widely being considered to be a misfit in the industry. Hardly will you come across a kayak roof rack that can be fitted onto it. This makes lives difficult for those Subaru Forester owners who can’t choose between their passion for kayaking and Subaru Forester.

Unlike after-market crossbars that are commonly available in the market, the factory crossbars that come preinstalled in Subaru Forester are very thin and it does not look like, it will be able to withstand the weight of the kayak for long. However, the company claims that the crossbars have a maximum 150lbs weight capacity but you have to take this information with a grain of salt.

However, thankfully, Subaru Forester has recently simplified the design of the rail and this makes it easier for people to get it fitted with other commonly available aftermarket crossbars.

What to Look Out in A Kayak Rack for Subaru Forester

What to Look Out in A Kayak Rack for Subaru Forester

Unless you don’t want to feel disgusted with your choice of kayak rack, you need to be careful during the selection process. Here are some crucial features that you need carefully consider before making the final call –

1. Kayaking Frequency

So, how many times do you go out for kayaking in a month? If it is one or two times a month, you might settle for a cheaper one because in that case, the kayak rack would not have to deal with the daily drudgery. But if you are planning to kayak almost every other day, you will have to settle for a kayak rack that can withstand daily abuse with ease and elan. Moreover, you will also have to make sure that the kayak rack you select at the end allows you to load and unload kayaks at ease.

2. How Many Kayaks You are Planning to Carry?

You can easily carry 2 kayaks on Subaru Forester but in case, you want to increase the number, you might have to purchase a stacker in that case.

3. Take A Good Look At The Roof of The Car

You need to take a close hard look at the roof of your car before you decide to purchase the right kayak roof rack for your Subaru Forester. Now cars come fitted with aftermarket crossbars whereas some come equipped with factory sidebars. So, you have to consider this otherwise you might end up purchasing a kayak rack that may or may not be compatible with the existing roof rack system of your car. The same goes for Subaru Forester. However, most Subaru Foresters come equipped with crossbars that mean, you can easily fit stackers, saddles, or j-cradles without facing any such issue.

4. Distance

Remove temporary pads from your list in case you want to travel far and wide and explore new waters because these temporary pads are notorious for their short lifespan. Temporary pads are known to wear out very fast and therefore, if you are planning to travel long distances, you should always opt for high-quality kayak racks so that you don’t have to replace them every now and then.

Last modified: June 22, 2020
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