Sonoma Perception kayak

I am thinking about purchasing a Sonoma 13.5 kayak (single) for lake touring/recreation. I already have a tandem kayak (twin otter). I was wondering if anyone out there has a Sonoma that could give me some advice on the purchase. Here are some facts:

I am female, 40 years old, 136lbs.

I want a kayak that I can use in light wind with light waves. Right now it is impossible to kayak a twin otter in waves or any light wind. I find myself looking out the window waiting for the perfect time to go for a paddle.

I was also wondering if this is a tippy kayak.

Many thanks for any input you may have.

EZ to edge
and tippy can be the same thing!

The 13.5 is quite nice to paddle. It is very easy to edge and gives you excellent feedback as to where you are (edgewise). It IS rather ‘sporty’ ‘spirited’ ‘fun’ but not terribly stable.


Fun little boat
The Sonoma is light, fast to accelerate, and easy to edge. Weathercocking is the only signficat drawback. If you glue a small fin to the stern, about the size of a business card, it will control weathercocking and give the boat a nice straight glide while still maintaining more manueverability than any longer boat.

agree with the above…
I had the Sonoma as my first kayak and it was quite fun to learn to kayak and roll with. I did find the initially stability to be rather low until I got used to the balance point. It tends to want to rest a bit on its side. It is a quick little kayak which turns great but like previously mentioned, it does tend to weathercock. You can either attach a skeg or just work on edging the kayak aggressively in heavy winds.

when the stern is looser than the bow = weatherhelm or cock.

a retractable skeg would be real sweet.

then you can have your cake and eat it too.



I Bought One

– Last Updated: Sep-21-05 11:59 AM EST –

two months ago and love it. It was my first kayak, and I didn't have a problem with tippiness after the first paddle. You'll grow into it very quickly.

As everyone else has said, it is a little more difficult to paddle when it's windy. But she's pretty quick in calm conditions--I have no problem keeping up with my 17" mates.

A couple of things you'll probably need to do: buy a split bow flotation and extra padding for the thigh braces so that you can roll better.


I’ve had one for a few years…
,and, unfortunately, have a thread on the other forum about discovering a crack in the deck (in the hatch recess).

I like the boat; if it fits you (and I think it would) it is a great carver/turner & I have not noticed the weathercock to be excessive (but it does tend to wander in a following wind).

The thing about the stability is the hull design (if you look at it you will see what I mean) sort of prevents it from sitting “level”…it has to lean just a little to port or starboard but it will not go beyond the 10 or 15 degree angle unless you want it to (MOST of the time!..I’ve had a few wet exits just trying to get out of the boat!)(I guess that means its a good boat to learn to roll).

Try one first, but I have no intention of parting with mine, crack or not…the 37lb weight is a great feature as well…