How to Lock a Kayak


As unwieldy as a kayak may be, they also represent significant investments -- especially high-end sea kayaks, which can cost thousands of dollars. Protect that investment by using a locking roof rack to hold the kayak or, if that's not an option, use a steel-cable "lasso" instead.

On Top of the Car

  • Pass one end of a cable through the loop at its other end, creating a "lasso." Pass the lasso around the bow of the kayak, placing the join point of the lasso on one side of the kayak. Do the same with a second lasso on the stern of the kayak, placing its join point at the other side of the kayak. Run each cable underneath the nearest crossbar on the roof rack, wrapping it around the crossbar if possible; take up any slack in the cable with extra wraps around the crossbar. Bring the ends of the cable together on top of the kayak and join them with a padlock; some cables have a built-in lock.

At the Dock

  • To lock kayaks up at the dock, run a steel cable -- the thicker the better -- through the metal locking points most high-end kayaks have placed in their hull. If your kayaks have a solid grab-handle molded into the hull, you can run the cable through that. Ideally you should connect the cable to something sturdy, just as you would when locking up a bike -- but if that's not an option, locking the kayaks together at least makes them hard to steal.

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