No matter how many installs I do while working for ACK, it is always a bit nerve-racking to drill into someone’s boat. In the best-case scenario, the customer has been paddling for a while and knows exactly where he/she would like the item mounted. Even still, there is the process of finding which mount will work best for that specific location, for that specific piece of gear. It isn’t a huge leap in logic to see that a maneuverable mounting system can save loads of headaches.

There are three major things to think about when installing accessories on a Canoe or Kayak:

The YakAttack Gear Trac

Deck Space – Boat manufacturers have varying ideas about cockpit and deck layouts. There are some designs that designate spots for specific bases but lots of times we are improvising to make a mount fit where it is functional. Even with several companies to choose from, it is sometimes hard to find a base with just the right size or shape needed for an install. With limited deck space on streamlined models like Hobie’s Revolution or Necky’s Vector, a thin rail like Yak Attack’s GT90 Gear Trac makes otherwise impossible installs a reality.

Feel Free Uni-Trac Mount

Paddle Stroke – The biggest placement issue in a canoe or kayak is paddle clearance. You might not realize it, but accessories could get in the way of your paddling stroke, so plan ahead! The manufacturers that do factory-installed rod holders tend to leave at least 32’’ of clearance in front, and 6” behind the seat for a paddle stroke. When I can, though, I like to have the customer sit in a cockpit with a paddle to get a feel for where a mount would work the best for them. Even so, there is not always a space for one in the “sweet spot”, so having the ability to move an accessory closer to you when using it, and away from you when paddling, can be a huge boon.

Functionality – Besides paddle-ability, there are other factors that can determine the placement of accessories. Fish-ability is a key point for a lot of people, so whether a person is right or left-handed or if they mostly use a spincast/baitcast can factor into the placement. Also in the case of fish finders and other electronics, it is nice to have them within reach.

Groove track from Native Watercraft

Last but not least, is the question of weight distribution. A heavy surf or trolling rod can put a lot of stress on the plastic when installed on a smaller mount. A rail, however, would disperse the tension throughout a larger area.

The RAM Screwball

With all the benefits of these accessories, it is no wonder that most kayak companies are embracing them. Wilderness Systems, as in lots of areas, was ahead of the curve in this regard. They included the Slide Trax rail into all of their Sit-On-Top boats starting in 2010.  Native was not far behind with their Groove Track, and now  Feel Free is including the Uni-Track on the Moken 12 and 14. Furthermore, third party companies are introducing new ways to become part of the rail world. RAM’s Screwball and Scotty’s Gear Track Adaptor now make it possible to bypass the mounting plates and dashboards that used to be conventional wisdom, although sometimes they still make more sense.

With the ever-evolving systems, there are lots of things coming on line to help with the search for the “Holy Rail” – good luck! If you ever need assistance with mount placement or suggestions, please let us know, we are always happy to help.

Randy @ACK San Marcos


  1. I have a solo skiff, I want to run two twelve inch tracks on both sides. My question is without being able to use backing plates will the tracks hold up to rod holders and a transducer arm. I’m worried they will fail. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Love, Mark

    1. Hey Mark, There should be no problem with transducer arm. However, the Rod Holders could be an issue depending on the size of you’re gear and if you’re targeting larger fish.

  2. Hello,

    I have two uni-track by Feelfree and I want to know if this works with Yakattack geartrac or any other rail.
    My Moken was stolen and I bought a Hobie quest 13 but I want use the uni-track.
    Thanks in advance

    1. Patricio, would love to help you out! Sorry to hear about your Moken being stolen. The Uni-Track does not fit on the Yak Attack track as is but I sent a request to one of our installers to see if there is another solution. I will post here.

      1. Patricio, talked to one of our store associates. He said your best bet is to get a hold of Uni-Track rails and mount them to your new kayak although you will need to makes sure to use the backing plates. I would contact Feelfree directly ( to see if they can help as we don’t carry them. If you have any issues, feel free to reach out to our team at or Call 888-828-3828. Hope this helps!

  3. Hello,

    I have a feel free 11.5 kayak with the unitrack system. Im trying to find a rod holder and mount for the unitrac. What are my different options. Id like to use the unitrack rail on my kayak so I won’t have to drill holes anywhere. Any help will be appreciated.