The Ascend 12T sit-on-top fishing kayak retails below $800, making it a budget-friendly option suitable for beginners and experts alike. This versatile kayak is designed to provide good tracking and maneuverability, while the large cockpit offers plenty of room for gear and fish. It also works with the RedHead waterfowl blind if duck hunting is your thing! Whether you’re fishing for trout in a mountain stream or bass in a crowded lake, the Ascend 12T will help you enjoy a successful day on the water.
- Very stable
- Value for money
- Tracks well
- Rain can get in the hull
- Some warpage on the hatch cover
- Seat is relatively low for fishing
- Seams have been known to leak
Size and Weight
The Ascend 12T measures 12 feet / 365 cm in length and 31 inches / 78 cm in width. The height is 11 inches / 28 cm at the center and the kayak weighs 77 lbs / 35 kg.
While this isn’t the lightest kayak on the market for this size, you certainly can handle the kayak alone for car topping or launching.
This kayak has a capacity of 350 lbs / 160 kg. Users reported that with a combined weight of the paddler and gear of close to 300 lbs / 136 kg, the kayak still continues to track and perform admirably.
Ascend’s trademark rotomolded tunnel hull design allows for excellent tracking and superior stability. Up on the bow, there’s a comfortable rubber grab handle for carrying the boat.
The bow compartment is a 22 x 24 inches / 55 x 60 cm cargo area with bungee cords to stash your gear or bring your dog.
The bungee cords are anchored down, unlike some other Ascend models where the bungees are removable on J-hooks so you can’t stretch them too much to store bigger packages.
The deck is covered with non-slip traction mats so you can comfortably stand up in the kayak if you so choose. The adjustable foot pegs are easy to operate and slide smoothly fore and aft.
Right by the foot pegs, there is a paddle mount for you to place your paddle temporarily. There’s also a paddle holder on the port side of the kayak for you to secure it.
There is a 14-inch / 35 cm lid that gives you access to the storage in the hull. Right behind the storage access are a small watertight container, a deep-molded cup holder, and some tray areas for small items.
On both gunnels, there are also two 16-inch / 40 cm accessory rails for your electronics like fish finders or GoPros. There are four scupper holes on the deck, and two in the stern.
The padded seat can be adjusted between three different positions in the kayak to help with the boat’s trim. The seat is comfortable and can be used on long days out and is attached to the kayak on a track and won’t fall out.
In contrast, the 12T’s smaller counterpart, the 10T, has a seat that is not secured onto the kayak, and if you don’t tie it down, you could lose the seat if you flip over.
Just behind the seat are two flush-mounted rod holders with leash eyelets, and the rear storage area with two scupper holes. The rear storage area is huge and will easily accommodate a milk carton or a cooler.
There are D-rings to tie your gear down and bungee cords that, like at the bow compartment, are attached to the kayak and cannot be removed.
At the very back of the boat are the second rubber grab handle and the drain plug.
This kayak tracks well in the water and you can stand up and cast from it thanks to its great stability and flat non-skid deck.
It isn’t the fastest boat in the Ascend fleet, but for a kayak this size, it keeps up just fine.
For a 12-foot-long kayak, it maneuvers relatively well but will not be able to handle the tighter turns. Like all sit-on-top kayaks, the Ascend 12T is better used in calmer waters.
Rain has been known to enter the hull, so in heavy rains, you might need to head for land and use the drain plug if you feel yourself getting lower in the water.
Although the kayak’s rotomolded plastic is durable and can take a beating, some of the seams around the rod holder and scupper holes have been known to leak. This is due to some manufacturing defects and you’ll be able to get it replaced.
Retailing at about $750, this is a great entry-level kayak for someone just getting into kayak fishing and will make a nice addition to any collection.
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Specification: Ascend 12T