Perception is one of the world leaders in the world of kayaks and this Perception Sports Striker 11.5 runs is one of the best entry level kayaks on the market. With features like a stabilizer hull and bungee deck rigging, this is an extremely good kayak that offers superb value for money. If you love to travel at speed, this Sport Sound kayak should definitely make it to your short list.
What to Consider when Buying a Fishing Kayak
Whatever kayak you choose to buy you will be spending a significant amount of money on it, so you want to make sure that you make the right decision. There are many factors that you need to keep in mind when considering which kayak to buy, including these main areas:
- Skill level
- Sit-on-top vs. Sit-in kayaks
- Type of construction
- Stability vs. Speed
- Intended use
The Perception Sports Striker is one of the best entry level fishing kayaks on the market in its price bracket and we hope that this review will give you an insight into its capabilities and restrictions. Read on to see if this kayak is the right choice for you and your next angling expedition.
|Type||Sit on top|
|Rigged for fishing||Yes|
- Basic design and features to appeal to new starters
- As it is very basic, there is not a lot of small parts to clean, so little risk or erosion
- Large standing platform
- Plenty of leg room
- Ability to customize your kayak
- Good stability
- At $605 this is a relatively cheap kayak for those on a small budget
- No cushioning to seat
- No foot brace
- Yo will need to customize your kayak due to lack of storage space
- Slow compared to most kayaks
- Only suitable for small lakes, ponds and mild rivers
The Perception Sports Striker 11.5 is probably the slowest kayak in the ‘Sound’ series, but it offers anglers great stability as well as being very easy to maneuver.
The kayak is by no means perfect, but it carries a good price tag and we think you are going to like this one if you are new to kayaking or enjoy a slow pace of life. If you caught your interest so far, read on to see exactly what we think about the Sports Striker 11.5 can and cannot provide.
Size and Weight
The Perception Sport Striker 11.5 kayak has an overall capacity of 500 pounds and is great for anglers on the large side and who take a lot of equipment on their fishing trips.
If you are used to going on long expeditions and taking a lot of equipment then the capacity should not be an issue. We often hear from taller anglers how small some kayaks can be, but there should be no problem for those who have long legs with this kayak.
Coming in at 65 pounds it is relatively light compared to some other fishing kayaks and those who are not very strong should not have too many problems moving this kayak about, although you are likely to need help getting it on to the roof of your car or traveling long distances.
Sit On Top Kayaks offer great stability and are easy to paddle for everyone including novices, right through to expert paddlers. In addition, these types of kayak can be used mainly on calm waters, but some models allow for rougher terrains.
This type of kayak is different from other types of kayak as it does not have a cockpit and the hull has a self-bailing drain holes. The hull of sit on top kayaks has a double wall to trap air inside of the hull making them impossible to sink.
It is not difficult to get on and off these kayaks, making them perfect for beginners. At around 15ft, sit on top kayaks are very stable although they should only really be used in calm water.
The Perception Sports Striker 11.5 has been designed as an entry level kayak for novice kayakers and those just getting into kayak fishing. For these reasons, the kayak is not very fast at all and is instead very stable and easy to maneuver. This kayak is suited to mild waters, streams, ponds and rivers and should not be used in rougher waters.
There is little in the way of outstanding design features as all of the effort has been put into making the kayak stable to give new kayakers the confidence they need when starting out. You can get the kayak in a number of colors, so you can add your personal bit of flair if you feel like it.
We love that the cost of this kayak because it is affordable for most people’s budgets and although you will want to customize certain parts of the kayak, it is very good value for money.
We do have to admit to not liking the design of the cockpit and the dual level seat. It is great that you can adjust the molded seat to two heights, but the manufacturer did not give enough thought about the support for your back, as there is very little in the way of support, which could lead to an uncomfortable day out.
Perception Striker 11.5 Kayak
To add to this issue, there is insufficient padding to the seat so there is little comfort for your backside. This should not be too much of a problem if you are traveling short distances or you stand to catch fish, but it could certainly be a problem if you are out all day and prefer to fish from a seated position.
We are also disappointed by the molded foot braces as we would much prefer adjustable foot braces, as most kayaks have these days. We get the reasoning behind this, as a new started you do not want to worry about too many gadgets and too many things to clean to prevent erosion, but this is something we think they should have thought about more.
Adjustable foot braces allow larger anglers to customize the fit of the kayak for extra comfort, so if you are on the tall side you may feel a little restricted in this kayak.
The design is the most contentious area when it comes to choosing a kayak as it is where personal preferences come in, as all anglers want different things.
If modern trends and fancy design features are your thing, then this may not be the model for you, but if you like your kayaks simple, with plenty of space then you cannot go wrong with this kayak. A traditional slim kayak brings a smile to our face, no frills, no fuss just lots of great fishing adventure.
Kayaks are not all about aesthetics, the design features need to work for anglers. The clever seat adjustments and foot braces are just some of the small things that make a difference to some people.
These features may not be the thing that immediately catches your eye but when you consider how advantageous it is to have adjustable foot rests for varying heights you can see how the simple things really are the selling points.
We are fans of the center console hatch that is easy to reach when laying down and is situated near the seat so that there are no protrusions when standing up. There is also a stand-assist strap attached to the kayak for additional peace of mind.
We like the molded cockpit features that allow plenty of standing room although there is little room for storing equipment and fishing finders. Although there is some good storage, there is no sufficient dry storage, which means that your electronics and camera may become exposed.
There is no problem in finding a space for cooler boxes and bait buckets, so take as much as you like in this 500 pound capacity kayak. If we are honest the dry storage is a little bit of an issue with us, but there will be ways around it if you are creative and in the grand scheme of things, it would not put us off buying this model.
The Sport Striker 11.5’s stability is due to the pontoon-type hull design, which is becoming popular in the new generation of stand-up kayaks. The 12.5 is definitely not flimsy and is made from durable plastics that will last relatively well given its low price tag.
A lot of the features of this kayak are great, some very unique even, so we think that the price tag is an absolute bargain and would be a wise investment for an experienced angler who is looking for innovative features.
This kayak is honestly not the kayak for us, but we are experienced anglers and have no real need for a kayak this basic. We are not saying that basic is bad, it serves a great purpose for entry level kayakers and this model will do the job inland whilst providing you with confidence you need to move on to a more in depth kayak.
Perception has a great history of providing top quality kayaks and we are sure that if you are starting out in kayak fishing this model will stand you in good stead.
If you do decide to buy this kayak, you will have considered the negatives we have pointed out and made an informed personal choice. We do not think that you will be disappointed in your purchase and we are sure you will have many happy years of fishing in this kayak. We personally cannot wait to get out on this kayak again, we liked it that much.