Older Perception Swing-front hatch

I have an older Perception Swing SOT, I love this boat, in fact I bought a Necky Vector, which I also love and although the Vetor is only a couple of years old, I let my friends use it because the Perception is so nice. I am going to go kayak camping next month and am tuning up both boats - checking and replacing straps, screws etc. I have only been out on day trips on the Swing and have never carried much. I know from research that I should be loading both the from and back of the boat or handling can get wonky. The front hatch has not been cut out. It still has the top of plastic and I am wondering if anyone else has experience with this boat, is that a front hatch or just part of the boat design? I will be calling Perception in the morning but if anyone else has any ideas I would love to hear them…like if you owned one of these and had the front hatch cut open after purchase. Thanks and Happy Paddling

Is it like this?
Does yours look like the red one at the bottom of this old spec page?


I doubt that circular depression in the molding was meant to be a hatch.

And I am skeptical that you will even be able to reach anyone at Perception HQ – other folks posting on here have reported that they are pretty much unresponsive.

There are aftermarket kits available for installing hatches in kayaks but there is no guarantee this would work for yours.