What the “Hitch” is on the back of your truck!?
We have plenty of uses for a hitch on your next trip to the beach. Get ready because some of them are really “out there”!
When you bought your pickup truck you probably paid for a towing package. You had dreams of tailgating, towing your boat, your jet-skis, an RV or a cargo trailer. But it’s probably just sitting there empty. It seems like a waste to have that 2-inch square hole there looking for something to do. Not anymore because we have plenty of uses for a hitch on your next trip to the beach.
Let’s explore what can be done with that vehicle hitch to make a beach day even better. We have included a sample photo of each type of product but you will find multiple manufacturers and versions of each. How about the set of 2 chairs above that connect right to the trailer hitch on your vehicle and float above the ground like a hammock? Remember to do your own research to find the best option that meets your needs, budget and fits your truck. We will start with the most boring, but very valuable use.
Hitch Cargo Carrier
This isn't your grandfather's cargo rack! A hitch cargo carrier combines a lot of capacity for your gear with easy waist-level access. In general users prefer hitch carriers over rooftop carriers due to this ease of access and overall usable capacity. But they aren't always easy to reach. There are many models: there's one that's great for Florida fishing gear! Hitch carriers slide into your truck’s trailer hitch and are secured with a hitch pin or hitch lock. Check this one out at https://pakmule.com.
Hitch Bicycle Carrier
The hard packed sand of Fort Myers Beach, Siesta Key Beach and the Daytona Beaches is perfect for riding a bike while taking in the sun and sounds of the surf. Usually a bike rack will be on top of a vehicle or affixed to the back. With a pickup or Jeep, you might hesitate sliding a bike in the truck bed because of scratching. But don't worry! There are many designs and options for hitch mounted bike racks that can transport multiple bikes. Biking is great on Little Talbot Island. These racks are easy to mount, easy to use, are durable, and free up the truck bed for other uses All are reasonably priced. Check out some different versions at https://ridekac.com/collections/hitch-mounted-bike-racks.
Hitch Kayak Carrier
Hitch Picnic Table
Now things start to get interesting! If you love to kayak or paddle board grab your paddles and head to the beach. Carry them with your hitch by using a vertical hitch mount or an "Extend-A-Truck" mount. They are attachable, portable, and easy to use. Kayaking is great on Anastasia Island. When you don’t need it, the rack can be easily removed and stowed away. Check out this vertical mount from RecPro or Darbyindustries.com.
You can never have enough table space with your family or crowd of friends at the beach. You can also never get enough food - but that's another blog post! When it’s time to eat, there is always a need for extra space to set down food, drinks, and plates. These handy tables can be attached to any 2-inch hitch receiver, are height adjustable, and folded down when they’re not in use. Some even have an umbrella which is great when you visit a drive-on beach like Daytona Beach Shores. This one we are going to purchase! Check this easy-to-use table at https://www.ezhitchtables.com.
Hitch Mounted Umbrella
A hitch-mounted umbrella is the perfect way to stay protected from the elements while spending your day at the beach. A hitch-mounted umbrella is easy to setup on your truck and is very stable. They say it goes up and down in 60 seconds. The ground underneath allows for movement beneath the hitch. This is a very large accessory that can be very handy at the beach. Try it next time you drive-on Ormond Beach or New Smyrna Beach. The tailgate can be open or closed. Check out the many versions at Humbrausa.com.
Portable Grilling at the Beach
A day at the beach always brings out the appetite. All that swimming and fun in the sun. There is no better way to satisfy your friends and family than by firing up your hitch mounted BBQ grill! Yes, you heard that right - this is a true tailgating accessory. Your hitch mounted grill should be large enough to meet your grilling needs, be durable against high heat and exposure to sea salt, easily moved away from your truck, and quickly dismounted when not needed. Check this top grill from HitchFire. You can feed 8-10 people with this grill and it is detachable. With an anti-theft padlock and hood latch, you can be sure it will always be the even when swimming or fishing away from your truck. Count us in!
Before you grill on the beach, make sure you look up the rules. Each beach has different requirements for the use of grills. Some Florida beaches only let you cook in fire pits, while others let you bring grills that have to be a certain height off the ground or only use a particular fuel. There’s nothing worse than packing up all your grill and food, getting to the beach, and finding out grills are not allowed. Most parks and beaches will have pavilions where you can use their grills if this is not allowed.
Truck Hitch As A Vault!
Okay this one blows our mind! Security is so important when you're visiting the beach. Imagine you’re at the beachfront, ready to hit the sparkling Florida water. But first you need to take care of where to lock up small valuables. You can't swim with items like your truck keys, credit cards, cash, or drivers license. The ocean salt water will kill every piece of metal you have. Believe or not, your hitch can help you out. It can act as a small vault to provide a secure location for these important valuables. One such product is the HitchSafe. It slides into your current standard 2" hitch receiver on your truck. The hitch receiver itself is a solid steel vault. It provides a secure location on your vehicle to protect your small valuables from the elements or prying eyes. Check out this product at Hitchsafe.com. Now you are definitely ready for a perfect Florida beach day!
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Susan and Bruno are travel bloggers specializing in Florida beaches on every coast. Take a road trip or plan a Florida vacation.