Submitted: 07-05-1999 by mrainer
I have had my Carolina since early spring ('99) and paddle it a couple of times a week. It is truly one of the nicest Kayak's I have ever paddled. I wanted a boat that I could take on weekend river trips, inland lakes and out on Lake Erie. It has exceeded all my expectations in all three conditions. I was initially concerned that I wouldn't be able to keep up with friends in long boats, out on the lake, but the Carolina is very fast I have not had any problems.
It tracks as straight as an arrow and turns easily (no rudder needed). It has very good initial and secondary stability and has a roomy comfortable seat and cockpit, although tall people may find the leg room limiting. The seat back is taller than most and is also comfortable. The cup holder in the seat is about useless.
Although some have complained that the hatch openings are small (they are) they will accommodate most items need for a full day of paddling, the rest can be strapped to the deck. I'm sure that Perception used this hatch design to maintain hull integrity and rigidity (larger openings weaken hull strength) and save cost (hatches are more expensive).
The only complaint that I have is that the deck rigging keeps popping out of the deck hardware. This happens even when applying only minor pressure on the shock cords. I have tightened and retighten the deck hardware only to have it happen again. I must fault Perception for a poor job engineering the deck rigging. If it did not have this problem I would have given it a ten.
If you comparing this boat to any other in its class I'm sure you'll agree that the Carolina is by far the best boat in its price range. Go try one at your local dealer TODAY and BUY IT. You won't be sorry. My other kayak is a Perception Prism (great boat, lots of storage).