When I purchased my Hobie Pro Angler just over 12 months ago there was a lot of debate around getting the larger platform versus the lighter and more manageable Outback. This had me wondering if I would have to use my roof racks or also purchase a trailer for the kayak.
What I liked about the idea of purchasing a Kayak was that you didn’t have to tow around a bulky trailer and find parking for it, or store it somewhere when it wasn’t in use. I really wanted to purchase the PA as the extra room and stability was a must and didn’t particularly like the idea of sitting in a wet seat all day like in an Outback. Also being able to confidently stand and cast was a must.
Knowing the specs on the PA’s, one thing they aren’t, is light, at just under 50kg unloaded and 69kg fully loaded they can be a little bit of a handful to move around. I had seen a number of different loading systems and was trying to work out what was going to work for me. I liked the idea of the side loading arms that were around and after talking to a few different people in the know I decided that would be the best option.
Having access to some old unused roof racks through my work. It didn’t take me long to knock up a side loading arm to suit. The roof X bars that I had were the Thule brand however the arm that I made could be used on most systems. It is very easy to use and remove. It also means that for Urban breaming I can park anywhere there is a car space on the side of the river and have worked out how to launch of the local jetties which makes access so much better.
I do see the merit in possibly owning a trailer in the future as the tournaments I did last year I had to load on the roof and all your gear is inside doesn’t leave much room for anyone else. Fuel economy should also be improved with a trailer as there would be far less wind resistance. So to take the family away with you or even a fishing buddy the trailer means it is easy to load and unload as well as carry most of your gear on the kayak, meaning more room for everything else.
Attached you will see a sequence of shots of how I load and unload the kayak by myself, it is easily managed and relatively fast to do. Can usually have it unloaded / loaded and ready to go in around 20 mins.