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Carrying a SUP

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Hi there!
I just bought cross bars for my 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L that I've owned for about a year now. It did not come with them, so I missed out on transporting my paddle-board last season, and decided I would not miss out this year. My concern, which kept me from ordering them straightaway, was the oddly positioned, factory-installed vertical racks.They are strangely short, beginning well behind the sunroof. When I install the cross bars, they will be insanely close together, which seems very odd to me with the great length of the roof. I previously owned a 2002 VW Eurovan, and so transporting the SUP seemed so easy because of the long roof surface. but with the Pilot...I really don't want to have to anchor stem and stern of the board with separate lines, but am afraid I will need more stability. Is it really necessary? I have been unable to observe other cars of same make/model with SUPs on the roof. If you have experience with this, I would love some advice here. Thank you! :)

Are bow and stern lines necessary when securing a SUP to cross bars on 2011 EX?

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They are a bit too close to each other in my opinion too.
Having said that, they are quite sturdy, I transported a 17' Royalex prospector canoe on them at highway speeds without any concerns, no lifting or flexing (standard belts around and front/rear harnesses). Not sure if it would work quite as well without front/rear anchors.

I also bought this unit later for easier loading-offloading, perhaps, you could find something similar, and it would give you another anchor point about 4 feet behind the rear crossbar:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
They are a bit too close to each other in my opinion too.
Having said that, they are quite sturdy, I transported a 17' Royalex prospector canoe on them at highway speeds without any concerns, no lifting or flexing (standard belts around and front/rear harnesses). Not sure if it would work quite as well without front/rear anchors.

I also bought this unit later for easier loading-offloading, perhaps, you could find something similar, and it would give you another anchor point about 4 feet behind the rear crossbar:
Thanks so much for taking the time to address my post and share your experience. I also appreciated the link you attached! I was able to see a picture of how that worked with a canoe. I am really hoping to not have to anchor the ends of my board, and not sure how that would even work... Fortunately, I can avoid highway- just need to transport across town. I may just take my chances and see how it goes, proceeding VERY slowly!
 

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I don't have a sunroof (2011 Pilot EX) so it's possible that the factory installed vertical racks go further than on your Pilot. I installed the two OEM transverse members and the racks feel pretty solid overall. I had no problems driving around with a 10'4" SUP and a few shorter boards (three 8-footers). Mostly around town, though. On a freeway, I might drive a bit on a conservative side, probably under 60, especially on a windy day.

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That is very helpful! Thank you for the info on your '11 Pilot model and your experience. It looks like your rails may actually be the same length as mine, judging from what I can tell of the positioning. Great pic!!! :)
 
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