Long road trips and overlanding adventures are only done right when you pack your vehicle of choice until it’s bursting at the seams. But if you’re playing Tetris with bags and your truck is bursting at the welds, chances are you won’t be able to see anything out the back — let alone those garbage can — as you back out of the driveway.
Roof racks are great, not just for spreading some of your gear to the often unused and underutilized space on the roof, but also for anything that won’t fit in your car to begin with. Paddle boards, mountain bikes, kayaks — it’s much easier when it all rides topside, especially after a long weekend of hard use. We picked out some of the best roof racks for carrying a couple days’ worth of fun.
AeroBlade Edge Roof Bar by Thule $220
One of the biggest qualms with roof racks is the wind noise they produce on the highway. Thule’s AeroBlade Bars have been designed with aerodynamics and ease of installation in mind, keeping the headaches to a minimum.
Skinny 1-Bike Rooftop Cargo Basket by Kuat $389
The Skinny 1 is as tough as any other thick-gauge roof rack, but is specifically designed for bikes. Its narrow design also allows for more gear than just the bike you’re bringing along.
SUPDawg Paddle Board Roof Rack by Yakima $259
With integrated rollers for easy loading and unloading, the SUPDawg makes paddle boarding anywhere you want much easier.
Hurricane 14 RoofPouch Cargo Carrier by Kanga $90
Though technically not a roof rack, the Hurricane 14 RoofPouch gives you the capabilities of a beefy roof mounted cage and is easily removed and folded.
Canyon XT Cargo Basket by Thule $300
One of the beefiest roof racks on the market, the Thule Canyon is perfect for overlanding adventures where your car’s interior cargo capacity just isn’t enough.