The Best Fishing Rod Roof Racks – Expert Guide (2023)

Fishing is a lot of fun, and it does require you to have fishing rods so that you can have the greatest chance possible of catching fish. 

If you are trying to keep your fishing rods in your car with you, it can be dangerous and difficult to do, depending on their length and the type of vehicle that you own. You can easily carry your rods by keeping them on top of your vehicle when you are driving on the road instead of a roof cargo box for fishing rods or rack. 

We have written this fishing rod roof cargo box guide not only to help you in making the right decision when you are looking for a way to carry your fishing rods but also in this guide; we have mentioned some of the best fishing rods carrier available on the market to help you in choosing the right roof cargo box or rack for your needs.

Bestseller No. 1
Rhino-Rack Ski and Fishing Rod Carrier with Universal Mounting Bracket
  • CAPACITY - Hold up to 2 pairs of skis or 1 snowboard, and in the summer is a fishing rod holder, wake board holder, or longboard holder. Comes with 1 set of 2 lockable arms with mounting hardware and 4 keys.
  • MULTI-PURPOSE - In the winter it can hold up to 2 pairs of skis or up to 1 snowboard. In the spring and summer - easily carry longboard skateboards or fishing rods.
  • UNIVERSAL MOUNTING - Universal mounting to most roof racks with easy installation. Suitable for all vehicles.
  • EASY RELEASE HARDWARE - Easy release and easy locking for gloved hands. Rubber grip profile to protect skis, snowboards & fishing rods. Master Key compatible.
  • HEAVY DUTY - Heavy duty aluminum construction, rust & corrosion resistant. Dimensions: 10" internal / 16" external.
  • EASY INSTALLATION - Simple installation with universal mounting brackets included. Fits most elliptical, square, and round shaped roof rack cross bars, but not all.
  • GLOVE FRIENDLY - The release mechanism allows you to open and close the carrier with gloved hands in the winter, which is a huge benefit after a day on the slopes. All you do is snap it shut, lock it for protection and you're on the road.
  • SIMPLICITY - Keep your vehicle's interior dry and clean by putting your gear on the roof. The simplicity of Rhino-Rack engineering means that you can easily get on with your adventure all year round.
  • TAKE THAT TRIP - The large capacity makes it perfect for a trip with family or friends.
  • ADVENTURE - At Rhino-Rack, we believe there’s an adventurer in all of us. It’s what drives us to create world-ready outdoor gear, born and proven in Australia. We believe life is better when we make space for adventure.
Bestseller No. 2
Yakima, ReelDeal Rooftop Fishing Rod Mount, Carries Up to 8 Fully-Rigged Rods
  • Angler’s choice: The ReelDeal fishing rod mount securely carries up to 8 fully-rigged rods of just about any style or length on your roof rack, instead of in your vehicle
  • Smart and secure: 15.5 inches of full-length padding holds your rods in place, keeping them safe on the way to your favorite fishing hole
  • Easy to install: Tool-free clamp design makes install and removal a breeze
  • Simple loading: Single-button access makes loading and unloading a breeze; Integrated SKS (Single Key System) locks included for added security
  • We’ve got your back guarantee: Covered by our Limited Lifetime Warranty
Bestseller No. 3
GEAR RAK Fishing Rod Transportation System Roof Top UP-Right Car SUV Roof Rack carrier
  • 4 Rod Capacity
  • Rust Resistant
  • Heavy Duty
  • UV Pretected
  • Lockable & Secure
Bestseller No. 4
Raynesys Vehicle Fishing Rod Holder, Car Fishing Pole Roof Rack Inside, 5 Rod Capacity, Heavy Duty...
  • 🌊[Adjustable Rods Belt] Fishing rod rack total length 85.8 Inches, adjust from 30" to 53"(76cm- 135cm), suitable for most trucks and cars with four handlebars, which can hold up to 5 fishing rods. Note:Please measure the space in the car before buying.
  • 🌊[Heavy Duty] Thanks to high strength nylon material belts with snap buckles, they don't slide back and forth while driving. Please make sure to pull the straps as tight as you can for better bearing the weight of the fishing rod.
  • 🌊[Easy Installation] The buckle equipped can help easy installation and storage. There is no need to drill on cars you loved.
  • 🌊[Save Space] It is a good way to manage your car space. With the help of it, the inner space of cars will be kept tidy and in order. No more mess!
  • 🌊[Wide Applicability] Raynesys fishing pole rack holder applies to trucks, SUVs, wagons, vans, pickups, RV, garage, wall.etc.
Bestseller No. 5
Ski Rack: Snowboard Rack, Fishing Pole Car Rack, Cross Country Ski Rack, Skate Board Rack, Kayak...
  • MULTI-SEASONAL -No need to remove your rack system. Use the Arc Rack vehicle carrier all year long. Carry your skis or snowboard for winter months and fishing poles or kayak paddles in the summer.
  • EASY INSTALLATION: Car mini ski rack is easy to install for a quick set up on your vehicle. Universals bracket mount for all vehicle roof cross rails & t-bolt channel mount option for trucks & cars.
  • DURABLE ALUMINUM CONSTRUCTION: Constructed out of heavy duty aluminum for superior strength and durability over years of use. Dimensions: 10" internal / 16" external
  • SPACE SAVINGS: Reduced size increases roof cargo space on vehicles. Additional roof space can now be used to carry Kayak, Cargo Box, or Bike Rack.
  • CAPACITY: Holds two skis or one snowboard for winter time actives and holds multiple fishing poles, Kayak paddles, or one skateboard for summer time activities.
  • SECURITY: Each unit is has an internal key lock system, providing security to personal belongings while a vehicle is unattended. Your Arc Rack car carrier include a set of keys.

Think About the Ease of Mounting

Rhino Rack

You need to consider several things while you are looking for a roof cargo box for fishing rods or a rack for your fishing rods. First of all, you need to consider how easily you can install it on top of your car. 

The Rhino-Rack 574 Roof Mount is amazingly fast and easy to install, and it is possible because of its universal mount. This means that this roof mount is compatible with a variety of different roof racks. And you will be able to install it on them without worrying about how difficult the installation process will be.

This roof mount is manufactured especially for transporting skis, but however many people use it to carry their fishing rods and for a good cause. It comes with a liner made out of durable and heavy-duty rubber. This liner is stretchy enough to keep your fishing rods in place without unintentionally injuring them. 

Moreover, this carrier keeps fishing rods so safely that there is no difficulty with wind noise or being injured when you are driving to your destination, which allows you to travel a long way with your rods to get the best fishing spot.

482 Reviews
Rhino Rack Ski, Snowboard & Fishing Rod Carrier with Universal Mounting Bracket, Easy Use & Fitment,...
  • LARGE CAPACITY - Hold up to 6 Pairs of Skiis or 4 Snowboards, and in the summer is a Fishing Rod Holder, Wake Board Holder, or Longboard Holder. Comes with 1 Set of 2 Lockable Arms with Mounting Hardware and 4 Keys.
  • TAKE THAT TRIP - The Large Capacity Makes it Perfect for a Trip with Family or Friends.
  • UNIVERSAL MOUNTING - Universal Mounting to Most Roof Racks with Easy Installation. Suitable for All Vehicles.
  • EASY RELEASE HARDWARE - Easy Release and Easy Locking for Gloved Hands. Rubber Grip Profile to Protect Skis, Snowboards & Fishing Rods. Master Key Compatible.
  • HEAVY DUTY - Heavy Duty Aluminum Construction, Rust & Corrosion Resistant. Dimensions: 27" Internal / 31" External.
  • EASY INSTALLATION - Simple Installation with Universal Mounting Brackets Included.
  • GLOVE FRIENDLY - The Release Mechanism Allows you to Open and Close the Carrier with Gloved Hands in the Winter, which is a Huge Benefit after a day on the Slopes. All you do is Snap it Shut, Lock it for Protection and you're on the Road.
  • SIMPLICITY - Keep your Vehicle's Interior Dry and Clean by Putting Your Gear on the Roof. The Simplicity of Rhino-Rack Engineering means that you can Easily get on with your Adventure All Year Round.
  • MULTI PURPOSE - In the Spring and Summer - Easily Carry 4 Longboard Skateboards or a Dozen or More Fishing Rods. In the Winter it can Hold up to 6 Pairs of Skis or up to 4 Snowboards.
  • ADVENTURE - At Rhino-Rack, we believe there’s an adventurer in all of us. It’s what drives us to create world-ready outdoor gear, born and proven in Australia. We believe life is better when we Make Space for Adventure.

Consider Magnets

Consider Magnets

If you are looking for a cargo carrier or rack option to carry your fishing rods that do not need any kind of mounting accessories, then you should go for one that uses magnets to connect to ferrous metal roofs and hoods of vehicles. 

The Tight Line Enterprises Fishing Rod Racks for Vehicles comes with extremely strong magnets that will easily attach to your hood and roof so you can put your rods on the outside of your car when you are on the road. This is not only quick to install and remove from your vehicle, but because it is not a permanent thing and does not damage your car, you do not have to worry about anything being connected to your vehicle at all times. 

Moreover, this product can easily manage at speeds up to 50 mph, which will give you peace of mind that your fishing rods will be absolutely safe when you are driving on the road. You can save and visit with up to four fishing rods with this fishing rods carrier or even opt for more extended surf rods rather than traditional rods and reels.

Tight Line Enterprises Fishing Rod Racks for Vehicles - Half Vacuum and Half Magnetic for Magnetic...
  • Lightweight and portable Half Magnetic and Half Vacuum (with vacuum loss warning indicator) car top fishing rod rack carrier system for your vehicle (pickup truck or SUV) to install on FERROUS METAL ROOF (Magnetic) and NON-FERROUS(Non-Magnetic or Fiberglass/Aluminum Hood). TIP: Use a magnet from your refrigerator to test if your car's hood and roof are made of ferrous metal.
  • Fast and easy mounting and removal of the rods, so you will not have to re-rigging rods when you go from fishing hole to fishing hole.
  • Rugged injection molded nylon construction with durable 1/4 inch bungee cord securely tie downs up to 4 fishing rods with reels or even large surf rods.
  • INSTALLATION: wipe off with a microfiber towel before mounting the rod rack with two 95 lb. pull magnets with rubber protective covers to the attachment area and do not slide the base across the surface to protect your vehicle's finish. Wipe off with a microfiber towel before mounting Vacuum Cup on the hood.
  • Made in USA. You can mount this vehicle rod carrier system from engine hood to the roof while driving up to 50 MPH (recommended).

Think Outside the Box

Rhino Rack Multi Purpose Holders

You will find options for storing and transporting your fishing rods; this fishing rod, roof box guide doesn’t mean carrying them with an exact roof box, as this can be very limiting. 

One difficulty with roof boxes is determining how you are going to put them when you are not using them, which is why these Rhino-Rack Multi-Purpose Holders are such a famous option for many people who love to go on fishing but do not have enough storage place in their garages to keep their roof boxes when they are not in use.

These clips connect effortlessly to roof bars or racks on the top of your car and have especially shielding rubber padding that will guarantee that your fishing rods are not injured when they are kept in these holders. 

Once you put your fishing rods inside the holders, you can simply squeeze the elastic strap around them so that they will not move out of the holders when you are driving on the road. They are usually sold in a pair to make it simple to take your fishing rods with you on your next fishing trip.

Rhino Rack Multi Purpose Holder and Universal Mount, 55mm
  • Allow you to carry more
  • Carries an extra pair of skis, ski poles, fishing rods, kayak paddles, spades, shovels, or sail board masts
  • Universal mount bracket and hardware included

Keep it All Covered


If you want to carry your fishing rods and other gear, it will be good to buy a larger roof cargo box option. 

These cargo carriers will weigh more; besides, they will be larger and provide you with more storage space not only for your rods but also for the other gear and equipment you will need when you start fishing. The Yakima Skybox Carbonite Cargo Box comes with 21 cubic feet of storage space.

This is the significantly larger size variant of this roof box. So with this carrier, you will not only be able to store fishing rods up to 215 cm in length in it, but you will also have a lot of space for the other things that you need to take with you. 

This means that you will not have to worry about getting space in your vehicle for your waders, extra clothing, tackle box, and snacks. Because everything you are taking with you will be settled over your head in a strong and sturdy box, there won’t be any matter over your fishing rods being lost or damaged when you are driving on the road.

590 Reviews
Yakima SkyBox 21 Cubic Foot Aerodynamic Carbonite Textured Lid Rooftop Cargo Carrier Box with Dual...
  • Fit more friends: Add more cargo space so you can bring more friends; SkyBox 21 fits gear for up to 5 people and is roomy enough for skis and snowboards up to 215 cm.
  • Less noise, more room: The tapered, aerodynamic design with textured lid (made from up to 80% recycled material!) reduces drag, wind noise and hatch interference.
  • Accessible & easy: Internal lid stiffeners add durability and make it easy to open and close; Dual-sided opening allows you to access your gear from either side of your vehicle.
  • Keeps gear safe: Our SuperLatch secures the lid to the base, keeping your gear safe and sound; Includes SKS (Same Key System) Locks for extra peace of mind.
  • Works with most racks: Fits YAKIMA round, square, factory and aerodynamic bars; Requires a crossbar spread between 24 in and 42 in; Tool-free installation with no assembly required.

Consider Security

Thule Force Cargo Box

Another important thing that you will need to think about when buying a roof cargo box for fishing rods is how you will ensure your rods’ safety when you are driving on the road. 

If you are just going on a day-long trip, then the possibilities are high that you will not face any problems with anyone trying to steal your fishing rods; but, if you are going on a trip that will keep you away from home for days at a time, then it is necessary to choose a conventional roof rack that is very secure. 

The Thule Force Cargo Box is a very large roof cargo box; it means that you will easily carry your fishing rods inside. Moreover, it comes with the added benefit of being extremely secure. Thanks to the oversized secure lock included in this roof box, you won’t have to worry about someone trying to break into your box and taking your fishing rods when you are out of the vehicle. 

493 Reviews
Thule 626 Force Cargo Box, XX-Large,Black,XX-Large (21 Cubic Feet)
  • Diamond-Textured AeroSkin Lid is durable and the aerodynamic shape helps cut through the air
  • Tool-Free Quick-Grip Mounting system attaches box to rack in less than 5 minutes
  • Oversized SecureLock ensures the box is closed securely
  • Dual-Side Opening for loading/unloading from either side of the vehicle
  • Height off crossbar: 15.4 inches

This indicates that you can leave your rods and all of your gear inside the cargo box while you are sleeping, stopping in town for a bite to eat, or simply exploring the area, and they will all still be there when you will get back. 

This added security will guarantee that you are not worried about someone stealing your fishing rods or your gear and will really let you enjoy your trip and get the most out of your fishing experience.

Make Accessing Your Rods Easy

Yakima ShowCase

Sometimes it can be not easy to get your fishing rods out of your roof box, but it may depend on where you park near your fishing spot. Many roof cargo boxes only give you access from the passenger side, which will keep you safe if you are accessing your cargo box on the side of the road but does not make it easy to get into your box if you are parked your car in close vicinity to a lot of trees. 

Rather than worrying about how you are going to get access to your roof box or choosing a different parking spot because of how your box opens, you should go for the roof cargo box that has a dual-sided opening; you can easily access the items of your box from either side.

The Yakima Showcase Rooftop Cargo Box comes with a great 20 cubic feet of storage space and also has the enormous advantage of an opening on both sides of the box so you can effortlessly get out your fishing gear no matter where you have parked your car. Not only does this box make it easy for you to get out your fishing gear, but it also comes with durable locks to stop theft or the box inadvertently opening when you are driving on the road.

19 Reviews
YAKIMA - ShowCase, Aerodynamic Rooftop Cargo Space for Larger Vehicles, Wagons & SUVs, 20,...
  • Designed with internal lid stiffeners for durability and easy open and close; Fits round, aerodynamic, factory and square crossbars
  • Excellent roof clearance featuring metal clamp with molded soft finish
  • Dual-sided opening for easy access on either side of your vehicle
  • Forward-facing hardware and tapered tail end provide the ultimate in hatch clearance
  • Ideal fit for larger vehicles, wagons and SUVs

Choose the Right Box for Your Car

SportRack Horizon Cargo

One more significant thing to analyze when picking a roof cargo box for your fishing rods is the size of your car and its design. You do not want to buy and install a roof box that will prevent your ability to open the hatch on the back of your vehicle or will obstruct your view when you are driving. 

The SportRack Horizon Cargo Box does not only come with a lot of storage space for your fishing rods, but also it is compatible with most vehicles so that you do not need to struggle with opening the rear hatch or viewing while you are driving.

A lot requires choosing the right roof cargo box for your next fishing trip, but this fishing rod roof box guide should help you by pointing you in the right direction when you are purchasing your next roof cargo box. 

366 Reviews
SportRack Horizon Cargo Box (Alpine, 11 Cubic Feet)
  • 11 cubic foot (311 L) cargo capacity
  • Made from rugged, impact resistant ABS material
  • Narrow and long profile is ideal for skis/snowboards and leaves room on your roof rack to mount other accessories
  • Passenger side opening for easy loading and unloading away from traffic
  • Easy to install or remove using the quick release attachment kit
  • Holds 3-6 pairs of skis (up to 210 cm) or 2-3 snowboards
  • Fits SportRack Rack Systems, square bars, round bars and most factory racks
  • Dimensions: 88.75″ x 21″ x 15.75″ / 225.5 cm x 53 cm x 40 cm
  • Max load capacity: 110 lbs (50 kg)

So always make sure that you take into attention how many fishing rods you will take with you if you require extra storage space for other gear and equipment and how efficiently you can reach your items and keep them protected from any theft. 

After carefully considering the convenient choices on the market, you can pick the right box or rack for your requirements so you can take your rods with you on your next fishing trip.

-our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.

Last Update : 2024-03-26

A dedicated automotive enthusiast and the Co-Founder of this platform. With a profound love for cars and a keen eye for top-notch accessories, I’m thrilled to share my expertise with you.

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