A good kayak overall. Have had it on small rivers and Pamlico Sound. High bow permits some weathercocking but not too distracting. Cuts through the water fairly well. Overall worth the price if you can find it on sale, Buy it.
This is the first kayak that I have owned. I have had it on sounds, lakes, slow-moving rivers, and a river with class 1 rapids, and it has handled them all. I do plan to add a rudder to help with open water. Seems like a great first kayak and you get a lot for your money.
Great inexpensive boat!
I upgraded from a Future Beach Trophy 126. I was looking to get more out of my yak. The water tight compartments are spacious and work well. The adjustable seat is very comfortable. The higher cockpit keeps you dry protected. For its length it is surprisingly agile and easily builds speed. I only have 2 cons. First the tracking needs correction more than I thought it would. However, it is not a nuisance. Second I would prefer to have locking hatch covers instead of the rubber press on covers. Overall I am very satisfied with my new float.
Submitted an earlier review on this kayak, and updating my impressions. I've paddled narrow rivers (think the Wading River in NJ), to wide rivers, lakes, and reservoirs. My kayak has never, repeat never, had water in the bulkheads, so any Conduit owners who have need to check their bulkhead caulkings or the covers. I do agree the seatback is the weak link on this boat. Because of its sea kayak imitation, it turns better by leaning away from the direction you want to turn, and I find I still have to think about this. It is sensitive enough that sitting one hip heavier than the other will affect tracking. Sure, there are better boats, but for the money, this is a great boat.
I purchased my conduit 13, in 2017. By far it’s the best all water type kayak I’ve used. I load it with gear in the bow and stern hatch, having the water tight hatches and bulkheads add the sense of security you feel in this strong durable boat. Not to mention the exceptional seat back. With its amount of adjustable positions ideal for long days into nights on the water! I highly recommend this for beginners to intermediate paddlers! I do recommend purchasing a rudder kit for bays or deep water current.
I purchased the Conduit last year and have had it out about 8 times. I have found it to be stable and comfortable. I am 6'3" and 265 lbs and have no problems entering or exiting due to the large cockpit opening. On my first few times out it didn't seem to tack well but that does not feel like an issue anymore so it may have just been me getting used to it (I am fairly new to kayaking). My only complaints so far it that it doesn't edge well and doesn't have perimeter deck lines. Overall i am happy with the quality but would probably look for a kayak with perimeter lines to assist with recovery and possibly a skeg for a little better tracking.
Got this as my first kayak because I wanted something I could take in everything from lakes to some slightly bumpy waters or even some sheltered coves on the coast. So far this boat has yet to meet its match in all kinds of conditions. I've taken it out in 3-5' swells during a storm and felt completely comfortable, as well as down some class 2 rapids where it happily splashed through all the rollers. I've even stood up in this kayak on flat waters and didn't tip. This sucker has ample room for gear/legs (if you're 6'4 like me) and it's lightning quick. None of my friend's boats can keep up with me when we go for a paddle, and isn't exhausting even after paddling 6-8 miles.
Only two downsides I can see are that it's REALLY hard to roll (but also nearly impossible to tip in the first place), and it's a bit heavy (definitely advise parking close to the water). But as a very cheap touring kayak, this boat will handle just about anything you can throw at it.
Highly recommend this boat for anyone wanting a one-size-fits-all kayak, or for anyone wanting to get into kayaking that wants an intermediate level kayak to grow into rather than an intro-level bathtub from Costco.
I'm definitely heavy-cargo: 6'4", 250 lbs with size 12 feet. I'm probably at the beginner-intermediate stage. I'll start off saying the Conduit can handle my weight. I sit low in the water, but I'm pretty sure that's exactly where it is designed to sit. I haven't carrie much with me yet to test the capacity.
I think the Perception Conduit 13.0 has about everything I wanted in a first kayak. I got exactly what I expected, in fact I bought 2, one for my wife.
My only complaint at this point is that I can't wear any foot coverings and I have to be careful not to put my feet through the front bulkhead if I take my feet off the foot braces. The Conduit is only 12" at highest, so my size 12 shoes can't fit anywhere. With shoes on, my knees are out of the cockpit, but resting on the padding. Shoes off, no problems for my rides (4 hours is most so far). I have to work to get my 36" inseam legs into the cockpit, but it isn't that difficult. I like the seat and found easy to adjust once I figured it out (a little documentation would be nice Perception).
It is too heavy for my wife, but I heft it around pretty easily (I'm big, but not strong).
Fist time out, I thought a bit unstable, but that was first-time jitters. After 30 minutes, I was rocking in it to see if I could tip under 'typical' conditions to no avail.
Using GPS, I've been able cruise at about 4 mph and peak close to 5.7 mph on a small lake, but I tend to drift left. I'm right-dominant, so not really a surprise. After 2 trips, I think my cruising tracking is pretty straight.
I am a heavy cargo (5'10" 230lbs), and needed a longer kayak than the 10-11 ft rec boats. I like the symmetrical hull design of this conduit, and other specs looked good so I bought one. Have paddled it on lakes, backwaters, marshes, and a couple small streams, and the boat has been remarkably responsive and stable, even in the wind and chop. It tracks well, but with a slight built-in rocker it turns easily. It's a couple of inches skinnier than boats I was used to, which makes paddling easier, and the secondary stability is excellent. Five ribs in the hull add tracking and stiffness without compromising handling. My favorite feature is the nice high fore-deck, giving plenty of room for legs and knees to move around and many options for positioning lower body. The foot pegs are smallish but comfortable, and seat is comfortable but seems flimsy where the back connects to the seat (I have not had the problems mentioned by others). I did make a skeg out of plywood as the boat comes with a bracket and holes for connecting a rudder kit, and this makes it track even better. One of the foam bulkheads was dislodged when I got the boat, so I repositioned and resealed it with silicone. Many advanced features in an affordable, stable, rec/touring crossover boat.
Price was right, suits my needs and very manuverable yet stable. If I could change anything, it would be the seat, it could be more sturdy, but other than that, very happy with it!
I've owned my Perception Conduit 13.0 for 2 years now, purchased from Dicks here in Pennsylvania. The kayak suits me almost perfectly as I am 73 years young, 6 ft in height, between 165 and 185 lbs and in reasonably good health. It seems perfectly stable to me and I've never had it flip over other than deliberately just a few days ago. The purpose was to see if it was possible for me to reenter it in deep water and unaided.
Sadly this was impossible, but the blame is mostly due to my lack of flexibility. I was able to swim up onto the rear deck and proceed to the cockpit area, but not able to get my legs inside without tipping over. Trying the other method of swimming perpendicular to the cockpit area resulted in much the same result.
With the assistance of my daughters, I was able to re-enter, but the experience leads me to believe that I had best be very cautious in deep water and in this I find the kayak to be great! I've been in high swells generated by passing power boats and by high winds on large lakes without any problems other than becoming wet due to splashing water.
I would have preferred to have drain plugs in both ends of the kayak as I seem to get small amounts of water in both. Not sure if it is entering thru the hatch covers or the built in bulkheads, but it is annoying nonetheless.
I would cheerfully recommend this kayak to anyone in my general age - condition range and am looking forward to many more years of use!
I just purchased this kayak from Dick's and took it to the lake for a trial. Was not sure what to expect, but the reviews were favorable. I was pleased with the boat. It is not top of the line, but the fit and finish are good and overall it is an attractive kayak. I have paddled many kayaks over the years and was trying to find one kayak that I could use for all my different types of paddling. I wanted something not too heavy or expensive that paddled in a straight line yet was manueverable, that had room and was comfortable, but not too big so that it was slow and bulky feeling. The Conduit 13 met all those requirements for me.
I took it out to a local lake and launched it for a little afternoon paddle. It is not too heavy for one man loading which is important to me at age 69! I had recently gone to a kayak demo and paddled numerous other boats so I had some recent experience to compare this one to. It went relatively quickly on the water and was not hard to keep on a straight course. Yet when I tried to turn it was quite easy to manage. The seat is OK and has enough adjustment for me. Cockpit is spacious and easy to get in and out of. Plus the padding on cockpit makes it easy to brace and the footpegs fit me well. I did not even have to adjust them when I got on the water.
Overall I feel that this is a decent boat for an inexpensive price. Less than half of the cost of some of its competitors. I am looking forward to more time on the water and setting it up with extras to make it perfect for my paddling fun.
The seat is comfortable and the back rest is adjustable both in angle and height. There are two bulk heads and two sealed storage areas with enough space for a few days worth of gear. making this a great entry level kayak for someone looking to get into kayak camping. The initial stability isn't as nice as my Swifty, but it's by no means unstable, as you are able to control the roll of the boat side to side very easily.
Tracking as you would expect with a longer boat is a vast improvement over my Swifty, while not perfect, you are able to maintain your direction with relative ease yet turning the boat takes little effort. The ability to add a rudder if you want will take tracking into the pure touring boat level. The boat does have some weight to it taking it to and from the lake, but once on the water you hardly notice it at all.
Overall, I think if you are looking for a boat that can expand your horizons to a multitude of water ways and push your level of paddling to new heights then you owe it to yourself to get this boat. It will take you where ever you want to go with confidence and ease.
The Perception Conduit blew me away with what a great kayak this is, especially 1/4 to a 1/5 the price of our glass kayaks. It's great in calm water, small consistent waves, and moderately okay in 1 to 3 (stretching it) foot choppy confused seas. In open water and larger seas and rollers I would stick with our 17 + foot glass kayaks. However, if you're a recreational kayaker and staying close to shore I don't think there is better value kayak on the market.
It tracks straight as an arrow and no rudder is required. I'm 170 pounds and 5'11" while my wife is 5'4" and slim yet we both love to paddle this kayak. The other nice feature - it is very light.
I found the shortcoming to be the seating system - it can get uncomfortable after just a couple hours on the water - i added a stadium seat cushion to alleviate numb bum. The foot pegs are fairly small, which can feel uncomfortable after a while on the water as well, but for the price point it's great. Bulkheads and hatches are expensive, and I can always supplement seating. Coaming is sturdy and the boat has a very nice line in the water.
If your price range is under $600, I highly recommend.
The Conduit has two bulkheads, with bow and stern hatches. It does not have a rudder, but is designed where one could be added. The cockpit is plenty large for me, 5'9", but my husband could not straighten his legs when wearing sneakers, even with the pegs all the way forward. He is 6'1".
As a beginner/intermediate paddler looking to advance my skills, I was surprised at the secondary stability compared to our old kayak. The Conduit has hard chines, and an edge went to a certain point and just "locked" there. Two people have told me it looks "sleek". And for a 13 foot kayak, it is fast. I have had no issues with the seat so far. Comfortable, adjustable. I think it is an excellent value for the price.
As a recreational kayaker, this gets me where I want to go on the St. Lawrence River. If the company would solve the problem with the seat back post and provide a little cushioning on the seat they would have an excellent product.
This boat is easy to paddle. I'm female, 5'4. This boat is easy to get in & out of and is not "tippy." I've paddled at least once a week since purchase 2 months ago on flat rivers, creeks, and lakes. I love it.
My only complaint is that when I try to drift/coast it drifts/tracks to the right. Part of that may be me being new to paddling.
All in all, though, love this boat!
I'm generally pleased with the Conduit, but it doesn't track especially well compared to the old America. I also ran into the same problem with the seat back as reviewer "petemoss" describes in his 2013 review. The seat back post would disengage from it's bottom pivot hinge and drop to the bottom of the boat. Or more precisely, the plastic strip supporting the seat back vertical support would bend and allow the seat back post to slip down past it. I ended up taking out the seat assembly, replacing the cheap plastic pop-riveted-in plastic strip that was supposed to provide support, replacing it with a section of aluminum "L", and replacing the pop-rivets with stainless marine hardware. The plastic and pop-rivet seat back support is ridiculously inadequate and needs to be completely re-engineered, in my opinion. Since I upgraded it I have had no more trouble.
Otherwise a decent boat.
Would have given it a 9 if not for the seat problems and mediocre tracking.
I LOVE this boat. Have had it 2 seasons so far (still plan a few more trips this fall, weather permitting) and have never had a problem. I paddle mostly small lakes, streams and rivers here in Upstate NY, and have taken this boat all over the southern half of the Adirondack Park. liked it so much I went back to Dick's and bought another exactly like it for my wife.
I found that it took me a few miles to get the feel for the boat, because it didn't track as well as my cheapy 10 footer (that boat has a discernible keel to it from bow to stern) and wind was an issue.
I paddled over 100 miles in the boat last year, in every condition from calm to a brisk wind and 6-8 inch chop with no problems. Over last winter i decided to add a rudder kit and WOW, what a difference. Unhappy with the idea of losing the 'locked in' feeling of fixed foot braces I opted to also purchase 'smart trac' foot pedals, which remain in position (you steer with small peddles fixed to the top of the traditional foot braces, so you can lock in, focus on your stroke, and steer around obstacles or correct course with a push of the toes). The boat is SO much more civilized with the rudder. Loved the rudder and steering controls so much I upgraded my wife's boat with the same setup (about $250 with the rudder & peddle kit together) and she loves it.
I am a big guy, 5'10" and close to 275, and I can get in & out of this boat with no problem. The seat is excellent, and with the roominess of the cockpit I can even sit cross-legged if I want to take a break. I've loaded it up and taken it camping with no problems. The initial and secondary stability are terrific, I've never tipped despite some hairy moments with large boat wakes on a wind swept lake. The boat has a lot of glide and is a joy to paddle. Typical trips range from spending a few hours poking around a small lake to day-long, 18 mile paddles up the Kunjamuk River, and the more time I spend in the boat the more I love it. It does what a rec boat should, with performance more like a light touring boat.
If you are looking for a step up from smaller, wider (slower) boats, but don't want to give up a big cockpit with legroom and the stability of a wide rec boat, this is one you should paddle.
I used the kayak off the coast of Maine this year for some island excursions and with the rudder it was a breeze to maneuver thru the chop and wind. Now I know there's much better kayaks for coastal use but for the cost, this is a great place to start, you can always upgrade.
Overall for the average recreational kayaker who wants something durable, works well and reasonably priced it is a great buy.
At 13 feet this boat is a great size and has versatility to handle a variety of conditions for a larger paddler. I'm 6'1" and 155 lbs. It is a bit heavy. Seat feels flimsy but is comfortable.
The boat tracks very well and easily to make some distance without a lot of work. It is very easy to load. One thing that I wish was included was a drain plug.
You really can't go wrong with this easy boat, just get in and go enjoy your favorite river.
This kayak is made of a durable material and withstands being pulled up on shore sometimes rocky pebbles resulting in only minor scratches. It tracks fairly well for an inexpensive kayak. The cockpit has a medium size opening so I don't have any trouble entering it. It also has footrest, however, they aren't padded so requires some footwear so your feet don't hurt pushing against them. The color is orange and yellow which is easily visible on the water. This one also has 2 storage areas to contain your gear and also straps across the top to stash a jacket.
The cons are there is no drain plug so if you get water in you must either sponge it out or tip it over ( it weighs 50 lbs.). The seat isn't very well padded and can cause some hip pain on long treks. I add a 1" cushion which helps immensely. Also, the seat back doesn't stay in its' track. This is very flimsy.
All in all, I'm satisfied and would recommend it for the price. If Perception corrected the few cons I mentioned, I would be willing to pay a little more.
I have noticed a few people complain about the comfort of the seat. I guess I am not going to complain about it although I have sat in more comfortable seats. I do start to get a little sore when paddling for hours on way to a campsite, but I think I would in almost any kayak seat.
In my opinion this a great kayak and if you're looking for a kayak in this price range, I would highly recommend this one.
The lack of accessories is also completely outweighed by this boat's wonderful handling properties. Having only used such smaller rec boats as a Swifty, Otter, and Future Beach Fusion, this kayak is a complete dream. While the others plow through the water, this slices. Of course, this boat does not compare to much more expensive boats, but it is amazing for its class. The extra $200 - $300 worth of length and design that gives this boat such performance over the rec boats is completely justified.
Turning radius and ease is also superior to boats of similar price, the 13 foot length is just long enough to provide good tracking and yet short enough to facilitate sharp turns, especially when the boat is on edge.
These handling descriptions apply to my personal experience on flat water, and I have not used the kayak on chop over 6 inches. According to other reviews, though, it will handle substantial waves satisfactorily.
From my experience, however, this is fast boat, and I am sure that an adept paddler will be able to keep up with a touring group quite well, especially in less windy conditions. If wind proves to be troublesome, however, one may add a Perception rudder kit to the rudder-ready fittings on the stern for $175 on Amazon.
I am exceptionally pleased with this boat, as I am sure any beginner, intermediate, and a few advanced paddlers would think.
When I first started using this kayak I had a really difficult time with its tracking. It seemed to wander all over the place. I have gotten much better with it over time and now feel that most of those issues were due to me as much as to the kayak.
Aside from two problems (described below), I have really enjoyed this boat. Like all plastic boats, it is very durable. It can hold a pretty good bit of gear. The seat is very comfortable and quite adjustable.
Now I should point out the negatives. First is a minor issue. The rear bulkhead leaked. When a lot of water would get into the cockpit, it would flow under the rear bulkhead and wet the contents of the rear compartment. I had to reseal it myself to take care of this. The second problem was much more of an ordeal. The seat has a back which is adjustable and which is able to pivot forward and backward for adjustability and storage. It pivots on what I would call a knuckle joint, which is held in place underneath by a strip of plastic that is riveted in place. On mine, this strip of plastic would easily bend out of the way in use, allowing the seat post to fall though to the bottom of the kayak. This would both shorten the seat and pin it in place where it could not pivot. The only way to get I back into position was to remove the seat entirely and force it back into place. I tried to talk to Perception's warranty department. They were unwilling to help me directly but insisted that I take the boat back to Dick's. Even getting the boat from Dick's originally was a weeks long ordeal, so I was unwilling to do that. In the end I replaced the strip of plastic with a half inch think piece of aluminum bar stock. I have not had a problem since.
I paid 550 for it at Dicks. I feel as if my money was worth it, and I know I have plenty of padding days ahead of me. Perception has always had a good reputation; therefore, I have confidence in this yak.
*8/10 due to the seat
I'm 5'9" and 200 lbs and I've been paddling for a few years, mainly in 9' 6" rec boats and also in a canoe. My main reason for wanting this particular boat is for flat water rivers, reservoirs, and inland lakes (not the Great Lakes). I wanted to be able to more easily travel longer distances on flat rivers especially all while hauling the things my kids bring when we go paddling.
It weighs about 51 lbs, which isn't bad to get onto the roof rack of the car, and being about the same thickness as the rec boats it rides nicely on it's side along with the rec boats. The Kayak Karrier handles are shaped nicely to give a comfortable grip when carrying it too.
When getting into the boat I appreciate the texturing they've added to the top of the decks because I sit on the back deck and then put my feet in, then slide into the cockpit so as to not drag my keel on the rocks. The bottom of the hull is more rounded than the rec boats which makes it less stable but easier to edge which is really nice. When I got it up to speed I decided to see just how far I could edge it and I was able to shift my weight far enough onto each cheek alternately to bring the edge of the cockpit right down to the water and maintain that position while moving. I like to edge while turning but it turns well while sitting straight up but of course it takes a greater radius to do it in. Something else I really like is that the attachment points for the deck bungies are molded above the deck instead of simply having holes drilled into it, thus preventing water from getting through and dripping onto your legs. The footpegs are the same style as I was used to in my rec boats (slide-lock style), and I'm quite happy with them. The seat hasn't gotten the best of reviews but it is height adjustable, and has a strap to adjust the angle. I paddled for 3 1/2 hours and didn't feel any better or worse than any other time I've paddled for that long.
The day I was out was pretty windy for the first half of the trip so I decided to try getting hit from all directions by paddling in large circles out in the middle of the reservoir. The waves were about 6" tall and coming with great frequency. When going straight into or away from the waves the ride was really smooth and of course with them coming perpendicularly I'd bobble back and forth but I never felt as though I'd turn over. Quartering just required corrective strokes to keep on track. The boat has all the points molded into it to add a rudder if you want but so far I don't feel like I'll be needing it.
I didn't have waves washing over the storage hatches so I can't vouch for their water-tightness or not but there is ample storage if I felt like camping out of it.
If I could have anything different for this boat I'd add thigh braces and a small day hatch on the rear deck that I could reach while sitting in the cockpit. Maybe have the cockpit molded in a way that thigh braces could be added by the user if they wanted them similar to how you can add a rudder if you feel the need. I used a splash deck with mesh pockets and my pfd has pockets so I don't HAVE to have a day hatch, but I'd like to have one.
Overall I feel this boat is perfect for someone wanting to paddle flat water trips on inland waterways. As soon as time permits I'll be taking it to a river to see how it does on some moving water.
Stability was very good, and with the hard chine, it edges very nicely, making the boat maneuver more like a shorter boat. Paddling hard resulted in very little yaw, which helps with tracking and glide.
I think there is plenty of dry storage space, and yes a little water got in, I think most from hosing the kayak off when I got home. The seat is comfortable, and offers a lot of adjustment. I wish it had thigh braces, but I think I can work with the foot braces and back rest to get a good hold of the kayak.
Overall, for the money, I think this kayak earns a 9. Tracking in tailwind could be better, but I don't paddle much in wind, so not an issue really. Also, thigh braces would have earned it a 10, but would have also increased the cost. I recommend this to anyone looking to tour some small lakes or deep slower moving creeks/rivers. If you have a problem with tracking, a rudder kit can help take care of that!
+ handles well for a boat its size, is fairly maneuverable and quite stable.
+ its hardy. I pulled in one day after a sudden rainstorm struck. As I was loading the yak onto my car a gust of wind struck and slammed it onto the pavement. There was barely a scratch on it. This is very comforting to know.
+ it tracks pretty well on flat water and on waves.
+ it's pretty light for its size. I have like zero upper body strength and can still carry this 51 lb boat for short distances.
+ roomy cockpit. I am able to take my 10 lb dog out with me and we are both comfortable. I wouldn't try it with a large breed dog though.
+ storage. This model has both stern and bow hatches, which is good because I like to go stay out all day and even enjoy kayak camping
+ glides easily through water. I can stay out on it with little effort on my part.
- the seat is ridiculously uncomfortable. When I'm out I like to be out all day and usually by the end of the day my lower back is sore and bruised from the uncomfortable seat. This is the first yak I've ever had where this has been an issue. Most (Old Town, Pelican, to name a couple) have been so comfortable I could sleep in it if I wanted.
- The hatch covers are rubber. In the heat of the day they are very easy to slip on and off, but in cold weather, they are a bear to get back on. They are such a pain in the ass to put back on that I leave them off in cold weather.
Overall this is an excellent kayak, one I would recommend to friends and family. However, the uncomfortable seat is bad enough that it prohibits me from giving it the full 10 rating.