Categories

behars Loading... Please wait...

ReRack Blog

All About Ski Racks

Posted by Siri K on

Overview

A critical part of getting up to the mountain for a day in the snow is, well, being able to get your skis and boards there! ReRack sells new and used ski racks, cargo boxes and other gear from top manufacturers including Thule and Yakima (the two main brands). We also carry one of the widest selections of replacement parts and older, discontinued models.

The two main ways to carry your snow sports gear is with a  ski rack or cargo box. Both are good options, and the choice will depend on your budget and needs. Regardless of your choice, you will always first need a base roof rack system (with very limited exceptions) in order to mount a ski rack or cargo box to your vehicle. Here are the main pros and cons of both cargo boxes and ski racks. 

Cargo Box Ski Rack
Pros Pros
Carry more gear - poles, boots etc. Less expensive than a cargo box
Protected from the elements Takes up less space (both on and off vehicle)
Cons Cons
More expensive - $300-$700+ Skis/Boards can get dirty
Takes up more space

Ski Racks and Cargo Boxes

Cargo boxes and ski racks both require a base roof rack
(Above: Yakima TimberLine system with CoreBar. FatCat ski mount, SkyBox cargo box)

Cargo Boxes

Many people consider a roof top cargo box to be the 'best' solution for carrying your skis and boards up to the mountain. Most cargo boxes will have enough size so that - in addition to your skis/boards - you can also toss in your boots, poles and other dirty, wet gear - keeping it all out of the car. In addition, putting your skis and snowboards in a cargo box keeps it from getting road salt, mud etc. on them (this may or may not be a big deal for you). Plus cargo boxes are great for your camping gear, road trips, and any other trip where you need extra space.

Do note that a roof top cargo box is not small! These are basically big, lockable plastic 'shells' and if it's not on your car, you will need someplace to store it. They also add significant height to your vehicle - so don't run into your garage or a low roof with it. Last point to mention about cargo boxes is that, depending on your vehicle, you may or may not be able to open the rear hatch fully with the cargo box on.

Here are a few different cargo box options to consider for you skis and snowboards:

Low Profile: These cargo boxes are designed for skis and snowboards (short in height, long length). Best choice if you're concerned about space

Inexpensive: Best choice if you want to fit skis and snowboards but can't afford most cargo boxes

Others: These are some of the most popular cargo box models overall (note the SkyBox 16 won't fit some longer skis)

Ski Racks

Probably the most popular option for carrying your skis and snowboards. The biggest advantage over a cargo box is the price. A cargo box will run you about $300-$700+ depending on your choice. Ski racks start under $100 (or even less for used ones) and top out around $275 for the latest, fanciest models. 

Ski racks mount to your existing roof cross bars, so make sure the one you're looking at fit your crossbars. Most new, current generation ski racks have 'universal' mounting hardware, but a lot of older systems will only fit Yakima round bars and Thule square bars. If you've got an older vehicle with factory crossbars, be sure to check out Yakima's  MightyMounts for older ski racks. 

All ski racks function in the same basic manner - an upper and lower clamp/arm attached by a hinge, with cushioned pads on the inside. Your skis will be sandwiched together, and snowboards should be attached with the bindings facing up. If you're maxing out the ski rack with snowboards the decks will be sandwiched together, so put the shorter bindings facing down. 

One issue that sometimes comes up with ski racks is the the bindings line up right where the two ski mounts are, so you're unable to close the ski rack. You have two options here: adjust the crossbar spread, or if that's not possible move the board forward (towards the front of the car) until the bindings are out of the way of the ski mounts. 

Below are some good ski rack options to check out:

Inexpensive

Top of the Line

Ski Rack Spare Parts

There's not a lot of replaceable parts on ski racks - mostly the  locks and keys, and the mounting hardware. ReRack stocks spare parts for ski racks from Yakima and Thule. 

Hitch Mounted Ski Racks on Hitch Bike RackRoof Mounted Dedicated Ski Racks

Carry Skis/Snowboards Without a Roof Rack

Yes, you can carry skis or snowboards without have a roof rack system on your car. The two main options: a dedicated roof ski rack, or a hitch mounted ski rack.

Dedicated ski racks are just what they sound like - a dedicated roof rack that will ONLY carry your skis/snowboards (and fishing poles). If you don't have a roof rack and don't plan on doing anythings besides snow sports, a dedicated ski rack may be a good option for you. We have multiple models available, but make sure to confirm the vehicle fit before buying! There is no such thing as a 'universal' ski rack that will fit all vehicles.

Hitch mounted ski racks let you carry skis/boards vertically on the back of your car. A hitch mount ski rack REQUIRES you to already have a hitch mounted, hanging-style bike rack. A hitch ski rack sits on top of the bike rack arms - they will NOT work without one.

Not getting the information you wanted, or have another question?  Contact us here

View Comments


Black Friday Deals at ReRack

Holiday deals are here! Check out the complete list of ReRack deals and specials for Black Friday 2017:Thule 599 Big Mouth with Universal Mounting Hardware - Buy One Get One 40% OffProrack Big PowderHound with Universal Mounting Hardware - Buy One Get One 35% OffRockymounts TieRod Bike Mount - Extra $20 OffWhispbar WB400 Kayak Carrier [...]

Read More »


New Yakima Ski/Snowboard Carriers

New Yakima FatCat EVO, FreshTrack Yakima is launching two new ski/snowboard carriers - the FatCat EVO and the FreshTrack. Both are available in 'large' (6 ski / 4 board) and 'small' (4 ski / 2 board) sizes. A few of the features and changes  we want to point out: FatCat EVO is an upgraded version of the [...]

Read More »


The ReRack Story

ReRack was started back in 2008, as a shop for buying and selling used roof racks, ski racks and bike racks. We eventually expanded into carrying new rack products (especially Yakima and Thule), operating an online store, and selling on eBay and Amazon.  We made a short video talking about what ReRack is all about. Check it out! 

Read More »


All About Whispbar

Whispbar is a premium brand of aerodynamic roof racks. They have been discontinued in the US market, and here at ReRack we have great prices on the remaining Whispbar stock. We're going to talk a bit about the Whispbar product, some of it's core features, and why you might consider choosing a Whispbar rack.  Whispbar launched in Australia [...]

Read More »


Choosing the Right Thule Bike Rack

Thule (Too-lee) is the largest rack manufacturer in the world - they've been around since the 40's and are in more than 120 countries around the world. They offer a lot of different bike rack models, and picking the right one for you can be confusing. Fat bikes, fenders, carbon frames - all these and [...]

Read More »


Car Roof Rack Brands

There's a lot of car rack brands on the market, and you probably haven't heard of most (or any!) of them. At ReRack we carry a variety of rack products from the top manufacturers and brands around. Here's a brief look at the main roof rack brands:BrandFoundedHeadquartersYakima1973OregonThule1942SwedenInno1976JapanWhispbar2006OregonProRack1980Australia/OregonRhino-Rack1992AustraliaRockyMounts1993ColoradoSaris1989WisconsinSportRack1980CanadaYakimaEstablished in 1973, Yakima is based right next to [...]

Read More »


How to Choose a Roof Cargo Box

For most people a cargo box is the best choice for adding car storage space - it provides secure, weather-proof storage for all kinds of gear, without buying a bigger vehicle. Cargo boxes are great for road trips, camping, families, ski trips, and a lot more. But cargo boxes are not cheap - usually falling in the [...]

Read More »


New Yakima Roof Rack Tower Systems - StreamLine

Yakima's been doing roof racks for a long time, so it's big news when they come out with an all-new, aerodynamic, integrated roof rack system! Dubbed 'StreamLine', Yakima's new product line started hitting our warehouse in early March, and inventory is still being added.  The StreamLine system fits a wide range of vehicles and roof styles, [...]

Read More »


2016 National Park Centennial

2016 is the United States National Park Centennial! We love getting outdoors here at ReRack, and it's exciting to see the National Park Service hit 100 years. The NPS was founded in 2016 by Woodrow Wilson, and was the first of its kind in the world. It has since become a model for governments around the [...]

Read More »


Back to Top