Perception, Review

Perception Carolina 14 Kayak Review


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Today for our review series we will be discussing one of the most popular kayaks on the market. The perception Carolina 14 kayak. For our review, we got a hold of the Carolina and tested it to provide you with a detailed summary of what you need to know.

Perception has been a company that has been in the business for more than 30 years. It’s one of the higher-rated kayaking companies. They’re known for being one of the first to start in the plastic kayak business.

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Carolina 14 kayak features

The first thing that stands out with the Perception Carolina 14 when you get into it is that it’s a very comfortable yak that tracks well and gives you great value for the money. The Perception Carolina 14 is known as a good value kayak which excels in giving the user some comfort and a kayak that is easy to handle while remaining durable.

The Pros:


The Perception Carolina 14 is known to track very smoothly and allows you to reach a great speed on whichever water type you are using it. It stands out as a very fast boat for a good price.

The Carolina has been tested and known to handle well on slow rivers, ponds, large lakes, and small lakes. It could probably be used on the sea, but I don’t know if I’d recommend it for the ocean as the waves and the wind could be an issue for turning.

The boat is known to edge very well. Regardless of the fact that it is a larger yak and can even maneuver through twisting springs without many issues (this can be aided by the purchase of the rudder).


If you’re looking for this kayak. It’s obvious that you’re looking to either upgrade or get something that has a lot more room. The smaller version of this kayak is also great, but the obvious upgrade here for the price point is the extra provided space which makes it a great kayak for anyone over 5’10’ or over 180 pounds. You will find this kayak to be great and accommodates your larger legs and weight.

The Perception Carolina 14 comes with back in front bulkheads which are sealed and allow you to hold plenty of storage space for any trip. This extra storage space is especially fitting for overnight trips and allows you to pack in virtually anything.

A friend that had used this kayak was over 250 pounds and had no issue getting in and out and maneuvering.


The price point of this kayak is very reasonable, especially for the upgrade from the other sizes it comes with a lot more space.


The kayak is very fast and this is a huge benefit when paired with the fact that it is also very light. This makes this a perfect kayak for beginners and intermediate paddlers.


There weren’t many cons when using the Carolina, there were, however, a few that are common for most kayaks, but some smaller considerations which well discuss.

Firstly, the seat is somewhat comfortable but could be improved upon. The seat is very thin and designed like it is for someone of a smaller weight class, even though the boat itself seems like it was built for someone larger. This usually leads buyers to install an aftermarket seat which could run up to hundred dollars plus installation.

Also for a larger person in the 200-pound weight range. The thigh braces on the kayak could be a little too tight.

The handles on the kayak have been known to fail after heavy use because the bolts are not tight enough.

Finally, and I know this is common for any kayak of this size the Perception Carolina 14 can be a little hard to control on turns.


Maneuvering the Perception Carolina 14 through very windy and winding streams can be a challenge since the boat size is not built for this and turning around in a stream could be difficult.

The kayak does not come with a rudder. However, you don’t need one because it goes exactly where you want without issue. You can consider one if you paddle in very windy areas, and you would like to be steered with the wind behind you. Overall if you are going to be kayaking in a very windy area, I would suggest getting the rudder.

Where to buy the Perception Carolina 14 kayak:

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Perception Kayaks Official Website
2014 Owners Manual

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About Julian Thompson

cb787c59d2808e1f609076e790ca977e?s=90&d=mm&r=gCertifications: Certified Kayaking Instructor (AKA)
Education: American Kayak Association
Lives In: Denver Colorado

I am a kayaking expert/instructor who has been fishing for over 15 years. Fishing is my passion, but kayaking keeps me on the water. I love to share my knowledge of techniques and tips with others. I live in Colorado with my wife and two kids and own a small kayak rental business On Grand Lake where I rent and instruct.