How to Tie Down Skis and Snowboards to a Roof Rack

It can be hard to fit your skis or snowboards in your vehicle with all your other winter gear. Fortunately, skis and snowboards are some of the easiest types of gear to haul on your roof! No need for special tie-down straps—just load a carrier onto your roof rack, secure your gear, and head for the slopes.
Snowboards on Roof Rack
Supplies List To avoid damaging your vehicle or equipment, we highly recommend using a carrier or roof cargo box to secure your skis/snowboard to your roof rack. For an overview of our best ski and snowboard carrier options, check out our video review!
*Note: Consult your vehicle's owner manual to confirm the weight carrying capacity of your roof prior to loading.
Watch Now: Best Ski and Snowboard Rack Options

Step 1: Choose Your Carrier

To carry your skis or snowboards on a roof rack, you'll need a carrier designed for this use.A variety of ski and snowboard carriers are available. They fit multiple crossbar styles, and their capacity includes up to 8 pairs of skis or up to 4 snowboards, so you can bring the whole family's gear along.You can also go with a roof cargo box that attaches to your roof rack. Cargo boxes have an advantage over traditional carriers in that they provide protection from the elements during travel and can also be used to carry snow boots and other wet gear you'd rather keep out of your car.
Ski and Snowboard Racks vs Boxes
Ski/Snowboard Carrier
Ski/snowboard carrier
Cargo Box with Skis
Cargo box with skis

Step 2: Secure Your Skis/Snowboards

After installing a carrier or cargo box on your roof rack, loading up is easy. Just place your skis or snowboards in the carrier, lock the carrier arms, and you're good to go.
Load Skis on Carrier
Load Skis on Carrier
Close Carrier to Secure Skis
Close Carrier to Secure Skis
If you're using a cargo box, once it's mounted, load your gear inside, then shut and lock the carrier.
Cargo Box Open
Cargo Box - Filled
Cargo Box - Closed
If you have trouble reaching the top of your roof to load/unload your gear, a wheel step or hitch step may help.Written by: Amber S.Updated on: 6/28/19

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