Submitted: 08-10-2007 by David Smith
I was looking for a boat that would be capable enough for coastal sea kayaking yet small enough for use on rivers and with enough dry storage for overnight camping. The perception Carolina 12 fit the bill perfectly. The boat was reworked for 2007, although most websites including perception show the older model. The boat now has front and rear hatches and more then adequate tie downs.
The seat was also completely changed. The Carolina 12 now sports the “Zone multi adjust outfitting system.” This means, that you get a fixed roto-molded padded seat with an adjustable backrest. The backrest is adjustable from a ratchet system on the side. The seat is the only downside to the boat. While it hasn’t presented a problem yet I think the backrest just feels flimsy. Furthermore, when I bought the boat the backrest was missing a piece and the ratchet had been installed backwards. The Kittery Trading Post, where I bought the boat made an exchange. KTP’s customer service is top notch.
The boat handles very well. It is stable yet quick. I have taken this boat from Esker Point in Connecticut to Fisher’s Island, NY and crossed the nearly two miles of open sound with ease. It even handled the boat wakes well. I have also used it to kayak camp overnight in the Boston Harbor, NP. The storage compartments are large enough for a overnight if you travel light.
I find the cockpit very comfortable. I chose these boat over similar models from Old Town, Wilderness Systems, and Liquid Logic, partly because of the open cockpit. The opening is not as large as on a recreational boat but big enough to give you room to move around. I also liked the fact that their was nothing between your legs around you to adjust you position a little more then on some other boats.
Overall I am very pleased with this boat and would recommend it to people of all abilities.