Best Ski Racks Reviewed & Rated for Quality

Even though ski and snowboard season just ended, we believe it’s the perfect time to prepare for next season. If you have to commute to the slopes like most of us do, we assume that you’ll be taking along your gear as well. No one wants to have to travel all crammed into one vehicle, on top of making sure everyone’s gear fits too – so what better way than to invest in a ski rack.

 

Featured Recommendations

INNO Gravity Universalimg
  • INNO Gravity Universal
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Easy On and Off
  • Price: See Here
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Whispbar Rail Factory System
  • Whispbar Rail Factory System
  • 4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Minimal Wind Noise
  • Price: See Here
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Yakima FatCatimg
  • Yakima FatCat
  • 4.6 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Top Quality
  • Price: See Here
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Whether you are looking for an option that holds 2 or 6 sets of skis, you will have no problem finding one that checks off all your boxes on the market today. These are very diverse and you definitely want to make sure that whichever you chose to purchase, it will get your gear up the mountain safe and secure. In this buying guide, you will find the ten best on the market today. We have done the footwork and extensive research for you, so all you have to do is continue reading!

 

10 Best Ski Racks

 

INNO Gravity

INNO Gravity
Landing itself in our number one spot is INNO’s Gravity Universal Ski/Snowboard Rack. This rack is number one because it is extremely durable and easy to install. You will not have to worry about how you will transport your skis up the mountain with this rack because once you lock down the clamps they are stable in place. Worried about the clamp damaging and scratching your gear? INNO’s Gravity Universal Ski/Snowboard Rack also features a soft and hard coating that protects your boards.
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Fast and Easy Installation
We consider this a key feature because once you reach the ski resort, you want to hit the slopes immediately. Research shows that this product can be installed in under five minutes, once you get the hang of it of course. This product will also allow you to reach your gear from both sides of your vehicle - its clamps extend out. Keep in mind, this rack is universal and will fit almost all roof rails/ crossbars so you don’t have to worry about it purchasing any additional hardware.

Durability
INNO’s Gravity Universal Ski/Snowboard Rack is extremely durable and will withstand extreme storms while transporting your gear. This is important for all travelers because mountain weather conditions can change spontaneously. You can surely rely on this rack to transport your gear up the mountain safely.

Cost and Value
If you are traveling with only one pair or three pairs, INNO’s Gravity Universal Ski/Snowboard Rack is worth every penny. Exceptionally priced, this rack will exceed all your expectations because of its top quality and value.
Pros

Easy to install

Exceptional quality

Made with durable materials

Can secure 6 skis or 4 snowboards

Simple to stow away and store

Cons

Priced on the higher side

Whispbar Rail Factory System

Whispbar Rail Factory System
Whispbar Rail Factory Tracks Rack System is one of the quietest racks on the market. When you are traveling up the mountain, it may be windy - with this rack there’s no need to fret. This rack system is designed to cancel out the loud wind noise(s). Whispbar’s Rail Factory Tracks Rack System is a must if noise is your biggest concern when traveling.
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Aerodynamic Design
Whispbar Rail Factory Tracks System’s design is outstanding. This is very sleek and will look flush when it is mounted to your roof rails/ cross bars. Its aerodynamic design will not only cancel loud noises while traveling but it will also save you some bucks on fuel.

User-Friendly
The Whispbar Rail Factory Tracks System is extremely easy to install. This feature makes this rack system stand out because it is literally ready to go out of the box. With that being said, you won’t have to worry about spending too much time setting it up. You will not have to purchase any additional hardware if you choose this rack.

Cost and Value
The Whispbar System is fairly priced. It may not be the cheapest system on our list but we believe it’s a great value. Its noise-canceling and aerodynamic features make this rack exceedingly favorable.
Pros

Minimal wind noise when traveling

Low profile design

Will look good with your vehicle

Light-weight

Cons

May not be too narrow for some cargo boxes

Yakima FatCat

Yakima FatCat
If you are in search of an option that will carry 6 pairs of skis or 4 snowboards, Yakima FatCat Locking Ski and Snowboard Rack is one you should highly consider. This rack is one of the most favorable racks on the market today. It is very quiet, sleek and includes universal mounting hardware for almost all factory and aftermarket roof rails/ crossbars - flat or round). No wonder this rack made it in the top 3 products for this guide.
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Ultimate Protection
The Yakima FatCat Locking Ski and Snowboard Rack is designed to protect your gear while traveling. The pre-installed integrated SMS locking system is the fundamental feature of this rack. Once your gear is clamped down, you will not worry about them slipping out. Even though some customers say that once all your gear is loaded onto this rack, you are only able to clamp it down 1-2 notches. It may feel like it's not clamped down and secure but they are.

Unique Built-in Lift
Are your bindings too tall or bulky? No need to worry with this rack. Yakima’s FatCat Locking Ski and Snowboard Rack have a built-in lift that will raise your gear on one side if they are too tall. This feature helps with protecting the top of your car from your gear brushing up against it. Also, when using this feature, your gear is still protected.

Cost and Value
Best bang for your buck! Yakima FatCat Locking Ski and Snowboard Rack is a great value. The 6 Evo option is pricier than other racks on our list but we believe this rack will meet all your needs.
Pros

Includes a built-in lift for tall bindings

Straightforward installation

SKS (same key system) locking system

Can fit 6 pairs of skis or 4 snowboards

Minimal wind noise when traveling

Cons

Some problems with tightening the clamps after 2 notches

SportRack Groomer Deluxe

SportRack Groomer Deluxe
SportRack Groomer Deluxe Ski Carrier is a durable rack that can comfortably accommodate 6 pairs of skis. Research shows that this rack is a great investment because you can travel with it for years and over thousands of miles. Long-term, this rack is highly recommended, especially for the price.
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Space Saver
The SportRack Groomer Deluxe Ski Carrier will help you save space in your vehicle while traveling up to the slopes. This rack can safely accommodate up to 6 pairs of skis. Being able to mount your skis on this rack will free up space in your vehicle/ truck for other items you may need on your trip. Also, this rack will help keep you and your vehicle dry from the day of skiing - highly recommended!

Durability
Even though the SportRack Groomer Deluxe Ski Carrier is the lightest option on our list, it is extremely durable. The manufacturers of this rack knew exactly what they were doing. This universal mount rack also comes with a lock that will hold your gear in place when used. It is recommended that you lock the clamps after loading your gear for optimal protection.

Cost and Value
The SportRack Groomer Deluxe Ski Carrier is reasonably priced. It is not the most expensive on our list but it is also not the cheapest. If you are looking for the best value, we highly recommend the SportRack Groomer Deluxe Ski Carrier. As always, please measure your current roof rails/ crossbars before purchasing.
Pros

Light-weight

Simple to install

Made with durable materials

Affordable

Cons

Must physically lock the rack

Not rust resistant

Yakima FreshTrack

Yakima FreshTrack
Another Yakima product lands itself on our top ten list! This Yakima rack doesn’t hold as many boards as the rack listed above but it is way more affordable - if the price is what you are most concerned about. The Yakima FreshTrack is highly recommended if you are only looking to transport a few boards safe and secure. When using this, you will experience some wind noise but customers say it’s not so bad.
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Easy to Install and Use
Here we have another rack that is easy to install and use. We believe that this is very favorable because loading and unloading can be such a hassle. You will be surprised by how easy this rack is to install and use.
Many racks on the market require you to have very specific roof rails/ crossbars but this is a universal rack that will attach instantly.

Simple Design
Yakima’s FreshTrack Rooftop Ski and Snowboard Mount is ready to go right out of the box. Its tool-free design is one of the best features of this rack. This makes the product easy to install, plus you don’t have to worry about using/ purchasing tools to install.

Cost and Value
Yakima - FreshTrack Rooftop Ski and Snowboard Mount is on our top ten list because it is such a great value. Not all racks are designed with a built-in lift system for boards with tall bindings, this makes this rack unique. Cheaper than the FatCat model also made by Yakima, this rack is a steal!
Pros

One push button to release clamps

No tools needed to install or remove clamps

SKS (same key system) locking system

Includes a built-in lift for tall bindings

Cons

Rack does not lock to roof rails/ cross bars

Inno INA927 Gravity

Inno INA927 Gravity
Inno INA927 Gravity Snow Rack is one of the best racks on the market today. This is made with top quality materials and you are guaranteed to get every penny worth with it. This easily opens at the push of a button and is convenient when you have your ski/ snowboard gloves on. With Inno’s INA927 Gravity you will not have to worry about the rust because it is made with high-quality plastic and aluminum that is rust resistance. We are confident that this rack will check off all your boxes.
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Premium Quality
As stated above, Inno’s INA927 Gravity Snow Rack is made of high-quality plastic and rust-resistant aluminum. After a long day of taking on the slopes, we are sure that you want to load your gear up and head back home. With this rack, you will have no worries with your wet gear causing rust on your racks once they are loaded. In conclusion, this rack was made to be used to its full potential.

User-Friendly
The best thing about Inno’s INA927 Gravity Snow Rack is how easy it is to use. It is ready to install, with no tools needed, out of the box. Its universal mounting system is extremely favorable to those in search of a ski rack. Even though many customers agree that this rack is universal, don’t forget to measure and cross-check the manufacturer's measurements for optimal use.

Cost and Value
The Inno INA927 Gravity Snow Rack is another reasonably priced rack. The lock and key for the product are included which makes this product valuable once it is purchased. This product comes with quality features at an affordable price!
Pros

Rust resistance

Easy to install

User-friendly

Affordable

Cons

The lock may become unreliable after a while

Thule SnowPack Extender

Thule SnowPack Extender
If cost is not a major factor in purchasing a ski rack, the Thule SnowPack Extender Ski/Snowboard Carrier is one to consider. This holds up to six skis and is the first option on our list that has a built-in extender. With the extender, this slide out feature will allow you to access your gear from both sides of your vehicle. The Thule SnowPack Extender Ski/Snowboard Carrier will also keep your gear and vehicle safe from scratches.
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Excellent Extender
The Thule SnowPack Extender Ski/Snowboard Carrier features an aerodynamic extender that slides in and out for you to load and unload your gear smoothly. This feature is extremely convenient and suitable for those who can’t reach the roof of their vehicle easily. In addition to the extender, this is designed with ultra-soft rubber grips that will keep your gear safe and scratch free.

Safe and Versatile
With this product, you will not have to worry about your gear coming out of place or not having enough space to carry everything. Once all your gear is locked and clamped down you are set to go. The Thule SnowPack Extender Ski/Snowboard Carrier also includes an integrated vertical spring system that allows you to carry thicker modern skis and snowboards - making this rack extremely versatile.

Cost and Value
The Thule SnowPack Extender Ski/Snowboard Carrier is priced on the higher end compared to the other racks on our list. We believe that you will be highly satisfied if you purchase this rack.
Pros

Easy to install

User-friendly

Universal mount

Includes an integrated vertical spring system

Cons

Pricey

Rakapak Inflatable

Rakapak Inflatable
We believe this is the most unique, affordable, and versatile rack on our list. This can be hand inflated within seconds and could withstand up to 180 pounds of weight. Rakapak Inflatable can be used not only for your winter sports gear but can also be used all year round. We consider this to have the best value.
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Versatility
As stated above, this can be used year round. This is extremely useful for those who want to save money. The Rakapak Inflatable is made from quality nylon materials and can be mounted onto almost all vehicle roof rails/ cross bars. We consider this to be an all-around product and highly recommended.

Easy to Install
The Rakapak Inflatable can be inflated in seconds. Are you wondering how this rack inflates? The hand pump that is used to inflate this is included. With that being said, this includes everything you need to transport your gear safe and sound.

Cost and Value
The Rakapak Inflatable is the only rack on the best 10 list that is priced under $100. You can’t beat the price and the features that it offers.
Pros

Extremely affordable

Inflates in seconds

Can be used year round

Quick installation

Cons

More than usual wind noise

TMS J-Bar Rack HD

TMS J-Bar Rack HD
Are you worried about not finding an option that will fit your budget? Look no further - TMS’s J-Bar Rack is priced very affordably and is even more budget-friendly than the Rakapak’s Inflatable product. Like many of the other racks on our list, we considered loading and unloading an extremely important factor. The wide mouth J bars that this rack feature makes it exceptionally easy to load and unload gear.
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Multi-purpose Use
TMS’s J-Bar Rack is not only affordable but has also been designed to be used year round. For instance, this can accommodate your skis in the winter and your kayaks in the summer.

Superb Protection
TMS’s J-Bar is made from durable material that will hold up against the elements of mother nature. This rack offers protection for equipment. The adjustable pads and durable straps will give you the peace of mind you are looking for!

Cost and Value
The TMS J-Bar HD is the cheapest rack on our list. Even though it is the cheapest, it is built with quality steel and made to last. Again, if budget is your concern, no need to fret with this product.
Pros

Can be used to carry multiple items less than 75 pounds

Durable material used

Lifetime warranty

Includes straps for extra security

Cons

Installation takes a bit longer than other racks

Apex 4

Apex 4
If you are only looking for an option that you can use during the winter season, the Apex 4 Ski and Snowboard Roof Rack will be your best bet. This rack is not as popular as the other racks on our list but it will definitely get the job done.
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Security
You may be wondering what makes this last product on our top ten stand out. The feature that we believe is most important is the fact that this rack includes its own locks. After doing our research we discovered that not all racks come with locks and their lock keys. The Apex 4 Ski and Snowboard Roof Rack is secure once the clamps down and the locks are used. Some customers stated that after traveling in cold weather conditions, this product might freeze. We recommend that you have a backup plan just in case this happens.

Ease of Use
The Apex 4 Ski and Snowboard Roof Rack is user-friendly. This rack is very simple to install and will allow you to quickly release the rack clamps with a push of one button. Keep in mind, freezing weather will keep these clamps locked down tight on your rack.

Cost and Value
Another reasonable prices rack makes it onto our top ten list. Just like we stated above, if you are looking for a seasonal option, this would be your best bet.
Pros

Quick installation

Affordable

Heavy-duty plastic material

Simple to use

Cons

Locks freeze shut under extremely cold temps

 

At the end of the day, your main goal is to make sure your gear is transported safely. It is in your favor to invest in a good option because we understand ski/ snowboard gear is far from cheap and the last thing you want is for it to fly onto the highway and break. In addition to these benefits, an exceptional product will keep your gear in good condition and free from potential damages caused by stuffing all your gear and yourself, and possibly other passengers into your vehicle. A good product will give you the peace of mind while commuting to and from the slopes!

You have a lot to consider now that we have provided you with the best options on the market today. You may feel a bit overwhelmed like most of us do when deciding on which product will work the best for you. So take your time, reevaluate each product and their pros and cons – we guarantee that one of these products will suit your needs. Keep in mind, investing in a ski rack will make your life easier and can add convenience to your ski trips.

 

Criteria Used in Evaluation of the Best Ski Racks

 

Whether you are a regular skier or snowboarder, there are many factors to consider when purchasing a ski rack that will suit your needs. We considered the following criteria for the 10 best ski racks on the market today:

Safety and Stability
The most important factors that we took into consideration for each item listed above was “is this product safe and stable?”. After doing extensive research we made sure that these products would not only keep your gear safe but also other drivers on the road. When you are traveling up the mountain excited to hit the fresh white powder, the last thing you want to happen is to see your ski’s slip out behind you and cause an accident. During transportation, it is very important to us that your gear is stable and locked into place.

Vehicle Compatibility
This is another thing that you should consider before purchasing your ski rack(s). From our research, we found that there are many different options on the market today. Unfortunately, not all are universal so it is important to determine if the product you want is compatible with your current vehicles roof rails/ cross bars. We recommend that you measure the size (height/length/width) of your roof rails/ crossbars first, and then cross reference it to the manufacturer’s measurements. By doing this, it will ensure that you are purchasing the correct racks for your specific vehicle.

Loading and Unloading
Eager to hit the slopes and don’t want anything to stop you? During our research, we took into consideration the time it takes you to load and unload your gear. After driving up to the slopes, we are sure you don’t want to spend more than 10-15 minutes unloading. Therefore we did some extensive research on the most popular and easy to use options. We believe that investing in the right product will ultimately cut down your loading and unloading times – which give you more time to enjoy the fresh powder.

 

Other Factors to Consider

 

Budget
After extensive research, we found that ski and snowboard racks can range from $40-$500. Keep in mind, that what could be the most expensive option may not be the best fit for you. We recommend that if you plan on using the rack substantially, invest in one that checks off all your needs. We believe that it is very important that you choose a good rack because you certainly don’t want to damage your gear – we know that ski/ snowboard gear is expensive!

Set Up
Not all options are made the same. Even though many companies advertise their racks to be universal and able to mount on all factory and aftermarket roof rails/ crossbars, it is very important to measure your current bars against the manufacturer’s measurements for optimal use. You surely want to purchase the correct rack that is compatible with what you have.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions 

 

Q: Are all of the product son the list universal?
A: More than likely, you can install these on more than one vehicle. Many products say they are universal but just to be safe, you should double check to make sure you have the correct roof rails/ crossbars needed for the racks to attach too. If you don’t there are plenty of aftermarket solutions that you can purchase to add the right roof rails/ crossbars to your vehicle. The main goal is to make sure your new investment is properly installed.

Q: Do you have to have roof rails/crossbars already installed on your vehicle?
A: Yes and No. We say that because during our research we found that there are many options on the market today. You have the options for roof racks, hitch racks, spare tire racks, and trunk racks. For this guide, we stuck to the roof style because the majority of the ski/snowboard community uses them versus all the other options.

For instance, Rakapak’s Inflatable Universal does not require any roof rails/ crossbars. It is wrapped around the roof of your vehicle. You may be wondering what is holding these inflatable styles in place… there are straps that make sure that they are safe and stable for use.

Q: What are the main differences between a roof and truck racks?
A: Roof racks are exactly what you think they are – racks that are installed to your roof to carry skis, snowboards, bikes, kayaks, etc. From our research, we found that roof racks are the most popular amongst these different styles. Trunk racks are ones that people attach to their trunk. You will notice that people who install trunk racks mainly carry bikes. The downfall for using a trunk rack is that once the rack is on you cannot access your trunk without removing it.

Q: Can I go through a car wash with these installed?
A: From our research, we would not recommend that you go through a car wash with your ski/snowboard racks. If you go through a car wash with your racks attached, there is a possibility that parts of the car wash will get stuck onto your rack. With that being said, this can potentially damage the racks, the car wash, and your vehicle. Therefore, we recommend that you remove the racks before entering the car wash. Many of the racks we have listed above are easy to install and remove, so it shouldn’t take long. This will save on potential damages you may cause by going through a car wash with your ski rack.

Q: Is there a possibility that my gear can slip out of the racks?
A: Honestly, from the racks that we have listed in our top ten – your gear will not slip out. We have conducted in-depth research and made sure all racks listed on this top 10 list are safe and secure to use. We believe that the only way your gear will slip out is if there was a defect in the product or if the skis were not properly stowed. Therefore, you should always double check to make sure your skis are locked in tight.

Q: Do all ski racks fit 6 skis or 4 snowboards?
A: No. We recommend that you first determine how much gear you will be transporting for each trip. Then measure the total amount of boards you have and cross check it to the manufacturers recommended maximum capacity for each rack.

Not all boards have the same width so it is crucial that you purchase a rack that will accommodate all your gear. Most importantly, you should choose a rack that will get your gear up and down the mountain safely.

Q: Will the addition of a ski rack effect my miles per gallon?
A: Yes, adding anything to the roof of your vehicle will affect your gas mileage. The difference is not necessarily drastic but we do recommend removing the racks when you are not using it. In the long run, if you leave your rack attached when you’re not using it we found that you can lose lots of fuel. 

Q: After installing my ski rack, will I have trouble reaching the top of my roof?
A:
Honestly, it depends. If you installed your racks to the top of a sedan, you are most likely able to access your rack easily (no matter if you are short or tall). But if you install it on a tall SUV and you are not that tall, you may have some troubles. If you cannot reach the top of your roof, we highly recommend a rack that extends out on both sides for easy access.

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