"How To" Thigh Straps & ex. Eskimo Roll in Alpacka

Hey Folks,

Here’s a short video on how/where to mount your d-rings & thigh straps to give the Alpacka ultimate control and handling. It still handles no where near as precise as a kayak… BUT this DRASTICALLY improves handling and now you don’t have to swim anymore!!! (If you learn how to roll really well… can you say pool time?)

I’ll be posting a step-by-step photo diagram on how to do this correctly on my website
very soon. There are much less efficient ways to mount these straps, so I wanted to show everyone where to mount them so you can transfer the maximum amount of force to the boat.

Here’s another version of how to put in the d-rings, thanks to Tracey Harmon.

There are much less efficient ways to mount these straps but there are ways to find out the solution of that. We will try to find the solution.

I’m waiting on my thigh straps to arrive. The only epoxy the local West Marine had was G/Flex. It seems similar to the glue used in the how to video’s. Anyone have any information for me on this? Has anyone ripped their boat after installing these?

yes, using the Alpacka tie downs instead of d-rings there has been a rip-off failure. Using the metal drings on big patches have held up well.

Epoxy is likely not the way to go. Use stabond or clifton urethan adhesives. check the alpacka web site repair & custom for what you need. You need stabond or clifton

Adding my ‘how-to’ documentation (and other mods) to the mix…


FWIW, NRS is selling a ‘packraft specific’ d-ring type patch. They are lighter, have a webbing loop instead of a d-ring, and they are tempting for those of us counting grams in our overall setups.

I glued some of these into a Yak about 2 months ago, and the one that sees the most force (at my right hip) finally failed last night. The glue job held, but the webbing part tore out of the patch.

I’ve been practicing my rolls in a local lake 3+ nights per week so this thing has been seeing lots and lots of force. I suspect that they might work for folks that already have a bomber roll and don’t often need to use it.

Doesn’t seem worth the paltry difference in weight to me, especially given the time it takes to glue these in and wait for them to cure.

In short, going forward, I think the standard d-ring patches are probably the best overall choice–at least at the hips.

I just put up our how-to for d-rings/tie down points/patches here: http://adventureswithpackraft.blogspot.com/2012/09/outfitting-boats_10.html

Most excited for my thigh straps for carrying a fully loaded boat…


I install straps high in the back and low in the front

When upside down my hips fall away from the boat causing me to be unable to snap my knee/hips.

Any suggestions to keeping my butt in the seat.

I know many other experienced paddlers diagree with me on this but I personally recommend going low or medium low in the rear. Having a high attachment at the rear feels great and ideal when you are upright but it is a definite disadvantage in my opinion when upside down. I initially did the same as you and experienced the exact same problem but now after outfitting another 10+ boats with low/medium rear attachment points I have found that the lower attachments work much better - certainly for my body shape/size/style when rolling. Perhaps it depends on your body shape and roll style though. Having a high rear attachment point in my opinion often means that you end up relying on your paddle a lot more than you should and this can expose you to shoulder injuries etc. A low attachment point makes the roll a lot more similar to that of a kayak. In the end I used the high attachment points that I had installed as attachments points for a better backrest system that keeps me in a powerful forward paddling position.

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