For those of us who don’t need a full expedition roof rack on our vehicles, the obvious solution is a set of roof bars, and in my experience nothing is quite as sturdy as Thule.
One of the main reasons I chose the Thule system was because of their range of canoe accessories, they don’t ‘alf make life easier, and that gets my vote!
They’ve been on and off my Discovery for 5 years now and they’ve stood up to quite a bit of abuse in that time. Not only have they transported my canoe safely up and down the country, but other items that have been too big and clumsy to fit inside the Discovery. They’ve been abused significantly by low hanging branches whilst off roading, and have got in the way whilst trying to drive through height restricted barriers at car parks! During this mistreatment they’ve always remained sturdy and stylish.
Thule have a huge range of carriers and accessories which are well thought out, I have their ‘High Foot’ kit (ref 420), bars (ref 765), Canoe Carrier (ref 579), Cable Locks (538), Multi Purpose Carrier for the paddles (ref 855) and Quick Draw system (ref 838).
The ‘Canoe Carriers’ are great, they’re blocks that you slide onto the bars, then place the gunwales of your canoe onto them, which stops the canoe from sliding sideways.
Granted, this kit isn’t cheap and you can tie your canoe or kayak to your roof for a lot less, but canoes and kayaks aren’t cheap and I’m more than happy to invest a few extra pennies on Thules quality purely for the confidence it gives me. And with the majority of parts being lockable, I know they’re safe when I have to leave them unattended.
Price: Various, check on line