Best GoPro Mounts for Kayaking


Paddling / Friday, July 10th, 2020

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The best GoPro mounts for kayaking depend on your style of kayaking and your creative vision. Recreational, whitewater, and fishing kayakers are likely to use different mounting options and whether mounting your GoPro directly to your kayak, body, or helmet, all will produce a different look.

One thing all kayakers have in common when picking a GoPro mount. They want the most secure option for protecting their camera.

Whether you’re shooting the GoPro Hero, GoPro MAX, or other GoPro, there are seven common mounting options for kayakers. I’ll cover the best GoPro mount for each of these based on safety, security, functionality, and durability.

Quick Answer: 7 Best GoPro Mounts for Kayakers

GoPro Kayak Mounting Considerations

There are a few things to consider when buying your GoPro kayak mount.

Wearability

Do you want to wear your GoPro on a chest or helmet mount?

Your action footage will be very different if you wear your GoPro instead of mounting the camera directly to your kayak. The preference to wear your GoPro will be a creative decision. Or maybe you’ll have more than one camera? Wear one and kayak mount another.

Will your video shoot need GoPro accessories like lights, mic, or flip-up screen for seeing yourself in action? Chest and helmet mounts may not work as well with certain accessories.

Quality

Product quality is of utmost importance when picking a GoPro mount for your kayak.

Look for a GoPro mount that’s rugged and customizable. The modularity of certain mounts, like those from RAM, allows you to assemble a customized solution to meet your specific application.

The quality of your GoPro mount…

  • Mount quality affects the safety of your GoPro. You don’t want poor build quality to cause the loss of your GoPro to the water’s depths.
  • The quality of your GoPro mount impacts the quality of your video. Mount designs that provide versatility, adjustability, stability, and vibration dampening will help you achieve the shots you’re after.
  • Quality also affects the longevity of your mount. Look for durable mounts made from marine-grade materials, high strength composites, stainless steel, and high-grade rubber.

Inflatable Kayaks

Mounting your GoPro to an inflatable kayak can differ slightly from a hardshell. The addition of a base for attaching the GoPro mount is often required.

One thing builds on another starting at the mount’s base…

The base… then the mount… then GoPro.

Popular base choices like the Bond-A-Base from RAM Mounts are attached to an inflatable kayak with a 3M VHB double back adhesive pad. Once installed, you can screw a track, ball, or post/spline receiver to the RAM Bond-A-Base. These options will accept various GoPro mounts.

GoPro Mounting Bases for Inflatable Kayaks:

  1. RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base
  2. RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with RAM Tough-Track
  3. RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with Ball
  4. RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with RAM ROD Post/Spline Receiver
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RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base for inflatable kayaks and other inflatable boats.RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with RAM Tough-Track for inflatable kayaks and other inflatable boats.RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with Ball for inflatable kayaks and other inflatable boats.RAM Bond-A-Base Black Adhesive Base with RAM ROD Post/Spline Receiver for inflatable kayaks and other inflatable boats.

Six Common GoPro Mounting Options for Kayakers

Where do you mount a GoPro on a kayak? There are seven common mounting options for kayakers. Five are on the kayak itself and two are on the person kayaking. Each has its own advantage.

When deciding on your mount, it’s often best to match it to the features of your kayak. Permenantly attached bases are often the more secure and stable option.

Out of the mounts listed, drill-down mounts are the only ones that require permanent modification unless you need to install a track base for your chosen solution.

1. Suction Mount

Looking for a less permanent GoPro mounting solution? A GoPro suction mount can easily be attached and removed as needed.

Whether you want to switch between different boats or your just renting a kayak for the day, suctions mounts work well for some kayak surfaces. Just make sure the surface is smooth, clean, and non-porous. They even work on flat adhesive disks.

Best GoPro Suction Mount for Kayaks:

RAM Twist-Lock Suction Cup Mount with Universal Action Camera Adapter

2. Clamp Mount

Another non-permanent GoPro mount is a clamp mount. Just secure and go.

Think twice before you apply a clamp mount. The force clamps apply can cause damage to certain surfaces.

Clamp mounts offer additional mounting opportunities that can’t be met through the use of suction cups.

Want to be able to very simply switch between a suction cup base and a clamp base? RAM Mounting solutions have you covered. Just loosen the socket arm and switch out your base between these or any other RAM Mount base like their track mount, drill-down mount or helmet mount.

Best GoPro Clamp Mount for Kayaks:

RAM Tough-Claw Double Ball Mount with Universal Action Camera Adapter

3. Adhesive Mounts

A GoPro on a RAM mount attached to a GoPro adhesive mount on a Jackson Kayak.

Adhesive mounts are semi-permanent. They attach by way of a double back adhesive pad. If you have a RAM mount the arm can be removed from the base when not in use.

RAM has a GoPro adhesive base mounting solution that works great on flat surfaces but kayaks often need a curved mount, so our choice for best adhesive mount is a combination of the Curved GoPro Adhesive Mount and RAM GoPro Mounting Bases Kit.

Best GoPro Flat and Curved Adhesive Mounts for Kayaks:

GoPro Flat and Curved Adhesive Mounts with a RAM Ball Adapter for GoPro Base and Universal Action Camera Adapter

4. Track Mount

Female kayaker on a lake shooting video with a GoPro on a mount while catching a fish.

If you have a track system on your kayak, you’ll find GoPro track mounts very convenient, secure, and sturdy.

If your kayak didn’t come with a track, a RAM Aluminum Tough-Track Kayak Mount can easily be added.

Best GoPro Tract Mount for Kayaks:

RAM GoPro Camera Mount with Track Base – 18″

I’ve chosen the 18″ version because of its versatility. It’s not too tall or short. If you’re a fisherman some of the taller models can get in the way of your casting.

If you need a different length mount, RAM has you covered with a variety of lengths all the way up to 48″.

5. Drill-Down Mount

GoPro drill-down mount from RAM Mounts on the front of a kayak.

A drill-down mount is a great option if you don’t have a track on your kayak or maybe your track already filled with cool gear like a self-leveling cup holder.

If you don’t want to drill holes in your kayak, this is not the mount for you.

Best GoPro Tract Mount for Kayaks:

RAM Drill-Down Mount with Double Socket Arm with Action Camera Adapter

These drill down mounts come in short, medium, and long.

6. Helmet Mount

GoPro helmet mounts are available as well. The footage you shoot will be less steady but gives a great understanding of the action from the viewpoint of the kayaker.

Best GoPro Helmet Mount for Kayakers:

GoPro Helmet Front and Side Mount

The RAM adhesive mount option we covered earlier can also be used on a helmet. The GoPro mount was chosen here due to its low profile.

7. Chest Mount

Lastly, you can strap and mount your GoPro to your chest. This is another great option but not my favorite if you’re paddling while capturing your footage. The kayak paddle has a tendency to get in the way of the scene.

A chest mount will provide less camera movement that a helmet mount but more than a kayak mounted GoPro.

Best GoPro Chest Mount for Kayakers:

GoPro Chesty Performance Chest Mount

A Note About GoPro Mounts for Helmets and Chest

Honestly, unless you are combining footage from your head or chest mounted GoPro with other footage I’m probably going to spew. I’m that person who’s going to get motion sick if you were to show me home footage filmed out the side or back window of a car.

Consider combining footage shot from a helmet or chest mount with footage shot from a GoPro mount attached to your kayak. It will make it easier for your audience to watch.

Additional Mounting Accessories

GoPro lost in the water due to improper mounting and securing.

The following mounting accessories are an added security measure for keeping your camera safe GoPro while out on the water. Remember, GoPros don’t float.

Conclusion

GoPro mounts help you get awesome footage while ensuring your hands are free for your paddling adventure. Your best choice of mount will depend on your creative needs, your style of kayaking, and your style of kayak.

RAM offers top quality mounts that can be mounted almost anywhere with interchangeable parts for endless mounting opportunities.

What’s your creative vision and which mount will work best for achieving your goals?