The Best Kayak Carts of 2024

by Vern Evans

We may earn revenue from the products available on this page and participate in affiliate programs. Learn More

It wasn’t that long ago that kayak carts were limited to a few brand names or a homemade contraption. Fast forward to the present, and the number of kayak carts on the market has exploded, plus they’re vastly improved. 

While many kayakers overlook the value of carts, a good one can make your day on the water significantly easier while protecting your beloved yak from unnecessary abuse. On the flip side, a poorly paired cart can ruin a lot more than your day, causing preventable damage and even voiding the warranty.

I’ve tested some of the best kayak carts available and got feedback from long-term users to help you better decide which floats your boat. 

How I Tested the Best Kayak Carts

While a kayak cart is a simple mechanism on its surface, there are key differences in their build and the environments they can handle. To get a well-rounded representation of the market, I looked at all-purpose carts and more specialized options built to handle different situations. I factored in weight capacity, universal compatibility, method and material of construction, and ease of use. Using that criteria, combined with real-world testing and interviews with kayak anglers, I compiled the following list of options. No matter where you plan on taking your kayak, a cart on this list will help you get there. 

The Best Kayak Carts: Reviews and Recommendations 

Best Overall: Wilderness Systems Heavy Duty Kayak Cart

See It

Key Features:

  • Weight Capacity: 450 pounds
  • Airless wheels
  • Adjustable height and width options
  • Marine-grade aluminum 
  • Collapsible
  • Beach wheel compatible
  • MSRP: $240

Pros:

  • Durable
  • Good weight capacity
  • Easy to use
  • Stowable
  • Good for all-purpose use

Cons:

The Wilderness Systems Heavy Duty Kart has been the standard in all-purpose kayak carts for several years. It’s a well-built and easy-to-use cart that fits just about any kayak, with quality components that ensure it’ll last. What separates this cart from many similar designs is quality. The marine-grade aluminum frame helps prevent corrosion and lends stability while keeping the cart light enough to easily store and transport. 

The bunker bar design of the Heavy Duty Kart has set the standard for many newer kayak cart models, but Wilderness Systems still does it best. The bunker bars are the horizontal, padded bars that cradle the kayak. They have a rigid, non-slip covering, making for easy kayak loading and transport with minimal risk of slippage. The cart also comes with two heavy-duty cam straps to ensure your kayak is secure.

From top to bottom, the Heavy Duty Kayak Kart is designed to take a beating while continuing to function smoothly. Its airless wheels are durable and have good tread for covering a variety of terrain. Capable of hauling up to 450 pounds of kayak and gear, this cart is a workhorse. While it faces much more competition these days, the Wilderness Systems Heavy Duty Kart is still the market standard for universal kayak carts. 

Read Next: Best Kayak Fish Finders

Best Stowable: Yak Attack TowNStow


See It

Key Features:

  • Weight Capacity: 450 pounds
  • Polymer and aluminum frame
  • Airless wheels
  • Adjustable height and width options
  • Collapsible
  • MSRP: $180.00

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Very easy to stow and assemble
  • Adjustable frame 
  • Bunk-style design is user friendly 

Cons:

  • Polymer components may lack some durability

While somewhat similar in overall design to other modern bunker bar carts, Yak Attack has crafted a unique and exceptionally functional cart with the TowNStow. Focusing less on overall rigidity and instead prioritizing ease of use and stowing ability, this is the perfect cart for those who want something simple yet effective. 

Condensing down to a series of easy-to-assemble parts, the TowNStow is designed to be stored on your kayak. While many carts are too bulky to store on board, this cart breaks down quickly and will fit in most kayak hull storage or tank-wells. Along with quick breakdown, the TowNStow is also incredibly easy to assemble. Requiring no tools, the few simple components snap effortlessly into place for quick use. 

The components of this cart are both its strongest feature and weakest element. The heavy use of polymer helps keep this kayak cart lightweight and easy to assemble, while also preventing corrosion. That said, the plastic components may lead to durability issues if you plan on abusing this cart heavily over a long period of time. 

Ultimately, this cart is a great blend of functionality and simplicity. If you’re a fan of throw and go kayaks and want a cart that’s similar, the Yak Attack TowNStow is for you. 

Best Off-Trail: Suspenz All Terrain Super Duty Airless Cart


See It

Key Features:

  • Weight Capacity: 350 pounds
  • Power-coated steel frame
  • 15-inch airless wheels
  • Spring loaded kickstand
  • Adjustable bunker bars
  • MSRP: $200

Pros:

  • Unique design allows for off-trail kayak transport
  • Adjustable bunker bars with Xtra Tall option available
  • Extremely durable

Cons: 

The Suspenz All-Terrain Super Duty Airless Cart is one of the more unique kayak cart options on this list. One of the only carts on the market designed specifically for all-terrain use, the extra-large airless wheels and powder-coated stainless-steel frame make for an impressive look. 

While still utilizing bunker bars, the All-Terrain Super Duty cart goes several steps further by making them height-adjustable and placing them in a unique position above the frame and wheels. Regarding those wheels, they have an extra-large diameter of 15 inches, giving them the appearance of bicycle tires rather than a kayak cart. This design, along with the rigidity and stability of the stainless-steel frame, allows this cart to be hauled up and over some very rough terrain. 

The impressive ability of this cart allows you to bring your kayak to areas that would normally be deemed inaccessible. Kayak fishing pro Sonny Legaspi, better known as “River Wolf,” is famous for getting his kayak into some tough spots. He’s been using the Suspenz All-Terrain Super Duty Cart for several years. “Sometimes, to get to the fishiest waters, I have to take the paths less traveled,” he says. “I needed a cart that could handle my fully loaded kayaks and rugged terrain, and that’s when I discovered the Suspenz All-Terrain. It’s bullet-proof and, in my opinion, the strongest kayak cart out there.”

While the unique design and durability allow this cart to excel in all-terrain environments, they do come with some drawbacks. At 17 pounds, it’s heavier than other carts on this list, and the large wheels and frame make storage slightly more difficult. 

With its unique design, there’s no other cart quite like it on the market. The Suspenz All-Terrain Super Duty Airless Cart is ideal if you’re looking for something to get your kayak into those hard-to-reach, extra “fishy” spots. 

Read Next: Best Kayak Fishing Accessories

Best Beach Cart: Railblaza C-Tug Double Haul SandTrakz Kit


See It

Key Features:

  • Weight Capacity: 300 pounds
  • Unique, compressible long-track sand wheels
  • Technically, two carts in one
  • Composite polymer material
  • Collapsible design with tool-free assembly
  • MSRP: $360.00

Pros:

  • Puncture-free Sandtrakz wheels for easy use in sand
  • Extremely stable
  • Universal compatibility 

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive
  • Bulky
  • Less weight capacity due to wheel compression 

OK, this entry is stretching the definition of “kayak cart” somewhat, but stick with me. Although the Railblaza C-Tug Double Haul Kit is technically two Railblaza C-Tug kayak carts attached together, its superior functionality and four-wheel design make it unique in kayak beach carts. Additionally, it’s sold as one single unit, which essentially makes it one cart. Finally, I wanted to include this cart because it’s one of the few on the market built from top to bottom for use on soft terrain. Unlike other beach carts that add ballon-style wheels to traditional carts, the four-wheel design creates a fully purpose-built cart that excels in beach environments. 

Despite a similar “all-terrain” mindset to the Suspenz Super Duty cart, the Railblaza C-Tug Double Haul kit couldn’t have taken a more different design approach. While the Suspenz cart excels in bumpy off-road situations, the Railblaza C-Tug kit is built for ease of use on soft sand and gravel. The Sandtrakz wheels feature a unique, compressible design that allows the cart to drag through sand while minimizing strain. The tank-inspired treads feature longer tracks that more easily grip and pull through softer terrain. The unique no-flat design of the wheels also eliminates the worry of improper inflation or popping tires associated with balloon wheels. 

One of the biggest problems with dragging a kayak cart through soft sand is load shifting, which causes the kayak to move and slip off the cart. The combination of two sets of C-Tug elastomeric hull pads creates a support base that stabilizes your kayak, preventing load shifting while dragging through notoriously unstable beach sand. 

Despite being a hybrid design, the Railblaza C-Tug Double Haul Kit with Sandtrakz wheels is one of the best all-around beach carts available. While more expensive than traditional carts, it’s not far off the price of most ballon-wheel style carts on the market, and the functionality of the design puts it a step above the rest. 

Best Budget: Malone TRX Nomad


See It

Key Features:

  • Weight Capacity: 150 pounds
  • Rubber tread airless wheels
  • Aluminum frame
  • Collapsible design 
  • MSRP: $99.95

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight and easy to store
  • Aluminum frame prevents corrosion

Cons:

  • Lacks durability
  • Limited weight capacity
  • Folding frame less stable and universal than bunker bars

While the rest of the carts on this list are great at what they do, they will also undeniably make a dent in your pocketbook. Sometimes, all you need a cart to do is help you move your kayak, and that’s where the Malone Nomad TRX comes in. Malone is one of the original kayak cart manufacturers, and they’ve drastically improved one of their older designs with the new Nomad TRX. It’s a lightweight, simple option for kayakers who just need a cart for basic transport. 

The Nomad uses the classic foldable design that was the dominant style on the market before bunker carts became popular. This style is simple to use and requires less material to build, making it a little lighter than bunker carts. It’s primarily designed to accommodate V-style kayak hulls, which makes it less universal than other carts. It’s also a less effective design, occasionally folding down or sliding while loading a kayak. That said, this drawback is significantly less noticeable if you’re loading and transporting your kayak on solid ground. It also allows for this cart to be folded up quickly and stored. The frame is also made of marine-grade aluminum, which is sturdy and will prevent corrosion.

While it may not be the most high-tech or durable cart on the market, the Malone Nomad TRX is an excellent option for those looking for a simple, functional cart that won’t break the bank. 

Read Next: Best Fishing Kayaks

How to Choose the Kayak Cart for You

Choosing a kayak cart may seem easy, but there are a few important things to consider before purchasing. 

Types of Kayak Carts

The bunker-bar style has become the most popular, generally allowing for stability and ease of use. The other common style is the foldable, resting-pad cart. Some of these can be very high quality and functional, but they do tend to have more issues with weight distribution and shifting. One style of cart I didn’t include on this list is the scupper cart. While scupper carts are popular for some kayak models, they are not featured on this list due to their limited compatibility and potential for damage. While scupper carts can be convenient, a kayak must be built with reinforced scupper holes for them to be used without potentially cracking the hull. 

Terrain

It’s also important to consider where you’ll be using your cart, as the environment can drastically dictate how it functions. A cart designed for use on hard surfaces likely won’t do great in the sand, and the same is true in reverse. 

Final Thoughts on the Best Kayak Carts

Hopefully, the list above has helped you consider what to think about when choosing a kayak cart. Ultimately, all the carts on this list are excellent options. While they may have very different designs and functionality, they all provide a high-quality way to help you move your kayak with less effort. Regardless of the cart you choose, as long as it helps you get on the water and kayak, it’s the right one for you.

 

Read the full article here

Related Posts

Leave a Comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Privacy & Cookies Policy