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Thread: Towing an inflatable with a canoe

  1. #1

    Default Towing an inflatable with a canoe

    Hi folks, plan to do some lake camping on water that doesn't get rough by any means. I have an 18ft Clipper square stern but all the gear and family of 4 won't quite fit.

    Anyone ever tow an inflatable full of gear with a canoe? I figure we can bring our wall tent and porta potty and the other big stuff, and the kids can play around with the inflatable at camp.

    We don't have to go fast -- just slowly motor along.

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Eagle River, AK

    Default towing

    I've seen it done with a kayak, so it is doable, but you are going to have some major drag, and any sidewinds are really going to kick you around.

  3. #3


    A couple of times some friends and I did the same thing with our stuff. We used a Valhalla canoe with 3-4 people on board, two paddling, and then tied our small inflatable raft behind with all of our poles,tackle,bpacks,coolers,firewood, etc.

    No problems at all, of course it was a lake and there was not a strong current or anything..but was fun and awesome to have..try it!

  4. #4


    You shouldn't have any problem if you are not trying to break any records. If its a calm day when you make the move then even better. If there is side winds then you'll have to horse it around a bit. Go for it and have fun, dont forget to show us pics.

  5. #5


    Ok thanks -- I'll try it out.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Fairbanks, AK

    Default easy

    I've towed a 12' row inflatable behind my 16' Zodiac, up the Yukon. No sweat, but obviously keep the raft as light as you can and take it slow. Good luck, if you haven't gone already. j

  7. #7


    Thanks for the report. Haven't done it yet, will soon. Plan to go slow on calm water. Towing will allow me to bring luxuries such as a a porta-potti and propane hot shower -- items that help get the family out camping with ease.

  8. #8

    Default Something to consider..

    One thing you may have already thought of is you will need to load the canoe to compensate for pulling. To clarify- when you tow the stern will want to dig in more due to the narrow back end. May need to shift things around to find a happy medium depending on the drag. More weight in front of the canoe should help if you find the stern digging in to much for your liking. Hope this makes sense.

  9. #9


    canuckjgc- I was assuming you were using an outboard. If not you can disregard my last posting. Good luck and have a nice family outing.

  10. #10


    Yes, I'm using a 2.5hp four stroke. Beats paddling.


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