Perception Tribe 9.5

I live in the Lehigh Valley north of Allentown Pa. I have narrowed my search to the 11.5 and 9.5. I will be a casual lake and lazy stream user. Prices seem to be retail? Thought they might come down a little. Paddlers cove would have to order (Washington NJ). So I can get the color I want. I am a new user. I Like how lite the 9.5 is. Any thoughts or help appreciated.


what are your metrics?
A 9’ boat is rather small for larger guy – what’s your height and weight? A longer kayak will almost always track better than a shorter one. The only advantage of the shorter one will be a little more maneuverability in narrow rocky streams.

The 11.5’ is also an inch narrower (it can be because the length adds the volume needed to keep it afloat). This adds to the speed as well. There is also more room for hauling gear on the longer boat. The 6 pound weight difference is not that big a deal. Sit on tops are always heavy compared to similar length sit inside kayaks. You are limiting your usage in our state to warm weather by choosing a sit on top. You’ll need a wet suit if you want to go out in most local waters in early Spring or late Fall. But for smaller lakes, streams and even some sheltered coastal paddling, these are fine.

Honestly, I would go for the longer boat.

Given the option of 2 choices, it is
almost always better to go with the longest boat you can fit into your transportation and storage spaces, because longer models, if the designs are otherwise not too different, are faster and easier to paddle, and sometimes even more stable when in waves/chop/ripples/wind. And you would not think that a foot or two would make a difference, but it really does. A really lightweight really short boat is like a cork bobber when the wind comes up., it won’t want to track well if you want to “go” anywhere instead of just splashing around having fun.

I own the 9.5 and the 11.5.

The 9.5 is great in the surf, good on a river and ok on the lake,

The 11.5 is good in the surf, good on the river, and great on the lake. I prefer the 11.5 for general paddling.


Perception Tribe choice
I also had looked at the Tribe as well as the Pescador. One issue I find are the handles that are attached to the bungee and why did Perception do that to the Tribe?

Thanks for the info. I am 5’11 and 190

Mostly looking to hit lakes, canals and slow moving rivers.

Price was a concern and that was why I am seriously looking at the 9.5

I found another source that I hope pans out that would be 130 cheaper on the 11.5 and 50 off the 9.5.

9.5 can be just as good
I’ve actually read some reviews of people who prefer the 9.5 to the 11.5. I think this is one brand where you can get a smaller model and not lose TOO much in performance.

The 9.5 is a solid little kayak from everything I’ve read so I think it might be worth the risk if $$ really is a big concern.

follow up
the source for the cheaper prices was misleading! Will not give that source unless someone really wants to pm me (is that available here?)

No one has the 9.5 Tribe in stock. A smaller ma and pa shop says I would not be happy in that small of a boat, will sit lower and the front higher leading to more drag and coarse corrections. That sound right?

He also will take 50 bucks off a 11.5 he has in stock. 2 currently…thoughts? and thanks for all the input.

PM is available,
but only if you set up your profile.

updated my profiles
allowed profiles to be visible…that help?

Now to figure out how to get to just the unread replies in a thread! LOL

Perception Tribe choice
at ack here in Texas they have an 11 footer tribe and want $649 for a blemished one and I feel that is too much to pay.

ma and pa were correct
Considering the waters you may want to eventually paddle, you would be better served by the 11.5.

Honestly, if your budget is so tight, it would be better to watch for a used boat. This is what we usually recommend for beginners and how many of us got started in kayaking. You can save many hundreds by buying used. But you will need to be more flexible in your choice of model.

pulled the trigger
picking up a new 11.5 Wednesday. Going off the great advice here and at the specialty shop. Getting the red one.

Where is this ma and pa shop? Such places are becoming hard to find!

shop is
Paddlers Cove in Washington twnshp NJ off route 31 just south of 57. Very knowledgeable staff and owner.

Come back and let us know how you like it once you get it out on the water.

Will do
Nice 3 day weekend coming up. Found a nice place called Merrill Creek Reservoir just across into NJ that I might hit 1st.

Picked it up late morning and was able to spend 2 hours and did 3 miles around Merrill Creek Resevoir in NJ today. Tracked very nice. Easy to paddle.

Hardly any water go in the kayak, so no problems going in the fall!

When I was getting out I saw a bunch of people coming in…all an real small kayaks and I noticed they all sat low in the rear…so I am happy with my choice with your help! thanks. Should be going out Saturday and Monday again. Anyone in the Lehigh valley area let me know. I live north of Allentown out in the country…just south of Blue Mountain ski area.

second update
spent 5 hours on Beltzville Lake about a half hour away. went from the lake into streams feeding it in 2 places. Got to see a nice set of falls on one end and was able to paddle into about 10" of water before it bottomed out. The water height was about 3/4 up the blade so somewhere in the 10" range.

Covered 8 miles and had a blast!