- Editor Rating
- Sun Dolphin Journey 12 SS
- Reviewed by:
- Published on:
- Last modified:
- Build QualityEditor: 82%
- Storage CapacityEditor: 85%
- ComfortEditor: 82%
- StabilityEditor: 82%
- ManeuverabilityEditor: 86%
Many kayaks available at low and intermediate price points are simple vessels, which lack the features most modern anglers want. They rarely provide enough storage space, they’re generally quite heavy for their size, and they are usually designed for general use – the manufacturer will simply throw on a few “fishing” accessories to make it suitable for anglers.
However, the Sun Dolphin Journey 12 SS bucks this trend, and provides anglers looking for an affordable kayak with a capable and fishing-ready option. Equipped with all of the things most anglers need, the Journey 12 SS deserves serious consideration from beginning and intermediate paddlers.
- Plenty of storage space for your gear and tackle
- Adjustable seat back and foot braces allow you to customize the craft to your body
- Remarkable stability for its size and price
- Tracks and handles well for such a reasonably priced kayak
- Lightweight and easy to carry to and from the water
- Probably not stable enough to permit standing
- No skid plate is included to protect the hull from rocks and gravel
- The plastic may soften and deform at very high temperatures
- The cargo areas are spacious, but quite triangular, which may make it difficult to carry coolers or other items
- No rudder or skeg is included to improve tracking ability
Like most other Sun Dolphin models, the Journey 12 SS is made in the USA from UV-stabilized high-density polypropylene. This provides it with the durability you’d want in a kayak, without causing the vessel to weigh any more than necessary.
However, it does lack a skid plate, so you’ll be wise to launch and land with caution. Unfortunately, some anglers reported that the vessel walls would soften in hot weather, which allowed the seat back rivets to slip free of the cockpit walls.
The Journey 12 SS provides enough storage space to accommodate a reasonable amount of gear and tackle. Two flush-mount rod holders are situated behind the cockpit, while a swivel-style holder is positioned in front of the seat.
It features a fairly spacious cargo area at the front of the craft, which includes bungee cords to keep your gear secure and a twist-lock hatch to store even more tackle. Additionally, like many of the better Sun Dolphin kayaks, the Journey 12 SS comes with the Personal Accessory Carrier – a removable floating compartment, which can be towed alongside the vessel.
Like most other sit-on-top kayaks, the Journey 12 SS provides plenty of room for most anglers. Both the leg braces and the padded seat are also adjustable, which allows you to customize the craft to fit your body. Thigh pads are mounted on both sides of the seating area to protect your legs, and the storage areas are all situated in places that are convenient to reach.
Despite only being 29.5 inches wide, the Journey 12 SS is stable enough that you can cast and retrieve or access the various storage compartments without fear of tipping.
Very few anglers reported being confident enough to stand up while fishing, but brave souls may try to do so. The craft has a listed capacity of 395 pounds, which will help keep even large anglers floating high in the water.
Most anglers reported that the Journey 12 SS handled surprisingly well in the water. It tracks better than most other kayaks at this price range, and it doesn’t get blown around very much on the water.
Most kayakers found that it was easy to paddle in the Journey 12 SS and reasonably high speeds could be reached. And because it only weighs 48 pounds and comes equipped with retractable carrying handles at the bow and stern, most anglers found it easy to carry the Journey 12 SS to and from the water.
The Sun Dolphin Journey 12 SS is obviously not suitable for those who want high-end features, such as pedal-drive systems or transducer-compatible scuppers, but it is a very good choice for anglers who are looking for a functional and fishing-friendly vessel.
It provides a very generous amount of storage space, including Sun Dolphin’s patented Portable Accessory Carrier, which you can remove and tow alongside the vessel. It is light for its size, so it is easy to launch and land, and it provides a surprising amount of stability for such an affordable and narrow kayak.
|Model||Journey 12 SS|
|Price||Check on Amazon|
|Length (ft / cm)||12' / 366cm|
|Width (in / cm)||29 1/2" / 75cm|
|Height (in / cm)||14" / 36cm|
|Kayak Weight (lbs / kg)||48 lbs / 22kg|
|Weight Capacity (lbs / kg)||395 lbs. / 179kg|
|Cockpit Size (in / cm)||N/A|
|Number of People||1|
|Salt Water Friendly||No|
|Adjustable Foot Braces||Yes|
|Other Included Items||None|