I have a Perception Prodigy 12.0 kayak which I got about 3 years. I was looking for a kayak that was stable and roomy. Well the Prodigy fits the bill. Since I do a lot of day trips, there’s plenty of room in the cockpit. As well as the seat is quite comfortable even after long treks. It handles well in on rivers and lakes. Even during wind days. I would highly recommend this kayak to any beginner or intermediate kayaker.
I run a kayak rental business and this is one of my favorite kayaks. It is very swift in the water but lacks a little bit of maneuverability, like most longer kayaks, so best to avoid tight creeks. The seat is very comfortable and the cockpit is roomy enough to have my young son ride duff with me. I am also impressed with it's max cap of 350 lbs. It has proven to be a durable kayak over the years with just a few minor fixes needed.
Overall it has been great. The larger cockpit is much easier to get in and out of, which is helpful for the less flexible. The larger cockpit is great for pets. Also the open bow is great for storage including fishing gear. Storage behind the seat is very convenient. Stern waterproof storage is amble for full day outings. The width is cause for a little more effort if needing to power through waves but is workable. The weight is average for lifting on vehicles. The seat has been great as some trips have been over 6 hours and my back and butt did not suffer.
Overall I have been very pleased with the Prodigy 12.
I filled the rear with a pair of stern bags today, and the bow with another float bag, plus two old PFDs. After swamping it the cockpit still has too much water to bail and get back in reasonably.
So the deal price is becoming less of a deal...I could have had fiberglass bulkheads front and back for the price so far.
I have paddled on lakes and rivers and even some light surf kayaking in the Atlantic. It's got good stability and paddles nice for a recreational kayak. I have learned a lot with this boat but now think it's time to move into more of a transitional kayak that will give me the ability to enhance my paddling skills as well as move onto different types of water I'm not now paddling. But there is no doubt I'll keep my Prodigy as I know there will still be times where it will be the right boat for the days event, and I'll also have a boat to loan others if needed.
I found this tracks well (I am a 5'10 and carry my dog and gear). The seat is higher back and stays tight in a supportive position when I lean back on it for long periods of time. Only giving it a 9 instead of 10 because of the hassle of having to watch for any cracks on the bottom to make sure it is better than 2011 model. Bought from very reputable dealer who will make it right if I have a problem.
It tracks and turns pretty well. Rigged to add a rudder, but I don't have one. The seat is comfortable, but also provides my one complaint: You can adjust the height, but if you lean back to hard it pops down on you (in a pretty hard way). But it is not a huge big deal. It is comfortable to use. I'm 5'10" and about 200 lbs. I'm looking forward to some day doing an overnight with it and carry my gear, but for now I don't really use the dry well except to store my skirt.
I recommend it. It is a good kayak. I just need more time to use it.
For a first kayak, we didn't want to invest a lot in case our needs changed as we learned. But while you might save a few dollars on initial cost with cheaper brands, those kayaks are thinner, can't take the sun's heat or the rough treatment kayaks often endure through loading and unloading from whatever method of transportation you use. The snaps, straps and cushioning of seats are cheaper and don’t last as long. Those are important elements to consider when purchasing a kayak. The Prodigy 12's seats are comfortable even for long trips, although we added some padding to ours. The snaps, straps and handles are well made, easy to reach and are built to last.
Prodigy 12s are roto-molded polyethylene kayaks, which are easy to load due to their light weight, and relatively inexpensive compared to Kevlar or fiberglass kayaks. Ours have been amazingly durable through the loading process and occasional scrape on rocks, trees, etc. Even though they're around 50lbs., they are easy for me (female) alone to swing onto the back of a 4-wheeler, or stand on end and shove on top of my SUV.
The Prodigy 12' is stable and surprisingly quick due to its streamlined design. The 12' length causes it to track straight and true for undemanding paddling even upstream, yet it's still nimble enough to make turns and curves without a lot of back paddling. It's a sit-in kayak, which is definitely the choice for a dryer ride, although not for the rotund.
The Prodigy 12 has durable foot peddles that are easy to adjust thanks to well-placed handles that are easy to reach even during paddling.
There's a long forward cockpit where foam is mounted for buoyancy, yet there’s still a lot of space for a cooler, jacket, etc. The bungee-type exterior bow cording allows for placement of towels, life vests etc. for easy reach. The exterior tail section is closed off but easily accessible via a top waterproof hatch, giving that portion of the kayak duel purpose for buoyancy and dry storage. It’s great for items you don’t need to access during paddling but want to carry along for long trips or times when you’re able to pull on shore. And the paddle-strap mounted to the side guarantees you won’t loose your paddle while taking photos or eating lunch.
Oddly enough, color is an important factor when choosing a kayak. If you plan to spend time in waters shared by motorized boats, you want a lively color that allows you to be seen. If you’re photographing wildlife, colors that imitate nature will help you blend into the environment more effectively. We chose a tangerine color for the former and a sand colored one for the latter.
We’re completely impressed with the Perception Prodigy and especially glad we chose the 12s. Our friends with the cheaper 9’s are getting Prodigy 12’s now!
The only complaint I had was that water would splash over the bow from either side in rough waters but I solved that problem by purchasing the console that is advertised on the same page this boat is on at Perception.com. A half skirt works good too but I like all the nooks and crannies on the console and that still leaves lots of room in the cockpit. I had to do a lot of tinkering with the seat adjustments but I finally found that (just right) feel that keeps me in the saddle for hours at a time.
I rated this boat a (9) just because you have to buy the console separately (I think you need this) but for fit function and performance I would recommend this boat to anyone... just pick your color.
Since May, I have learned the majority of my problems were, well, me. The "spin outs" are directly related to body position and pressure on the pedals. Getting in should be done with the current going parallel to the boat, not at all against the side of the boat. I'm guessing this is novice stuff you should already know. My dry hatch wasn't keeping very dry, but some marine grade silicone easily fixed that.
I've had this boat on lakes, rivers, and even an over-nighter. It's amazing what you can pack in this thing! My one true complaint is that if you have a drink in the cupholder, you will get goosed or knock it over getting back in the boat. Other than that, it's a great boat and handles great!
I was quite disappointed to find that the bulkhead is leaking again (not nearly as bad as the first one) and Perception told the dealership to replace it 'again'. I'll give it another go since it's so comfortable and easy to maneuver, even on rivers/streams, and lakes. I love it - hopefully this one will not leak through to the 'dry'-hatch.
This boat is incredibly stable. I never felt like I was going to get dunked. I even took his 40lb shar pei and my 60lb shepard for a ride (separately). I figured we were all going for a swim, but had no problem staying balanced with their movements. The cockpit is very roomy. Easy in and out for me and the dogs. The foot pegs have an easy and wide range of adjustments. I'm a shorty at 5'0" and had no trouble getting comfortable. There's plenty of room for gear & a small cooler.
I could not be happier with the Prodigy 12 and I can't wait for a lifetime of paddling!
The 12 has a very large cockpit, this and the initial stability make it easy to get in and out of, high dock, low dock, sand bank, rock ledge, you name it. I could drop my butt in, wash off my feet by hanging them over the side, and keep the inside clean. The large interior space makes it easy to keep your water bottles and even a small cooler handy, either behind the seat or in front of your feet.
I paddled it 12 miles yesterday on a flat lake, calm to 8 mph winds. The easy seat adjustments made it a breeze to stay comfortable. The footpegs are also easy to adjust to my 6'0" 200 lb. needs, on the fly as required. It tracks well, and minor course corrections happen with a lean. The short size make turning around in inlets or creeks quick and easy.
It is a rec. kayak and is less efficient than a touring or sea kayak. I was very tired after paddling 12 miles. It has foam bow flotation and a rear bulkhead. I didn't test the 'secondary' stability since I wasn't sure I'd be able to do a wet recovery, with small rear deck and extra large cockpit.
I think it will be a fun kayak for shorter trips on lakes and reservoirs, and as a loaner to friends who want to try kayaking. It is easy to hand carry at 48 lbs, and the length will facilitate the storage, and the ability to take it along camping.