Kayak Fishing Ultimate Resource

Tue, Sep 30, 2014
Ascend “FS12T”

Ascend “FS12T” Hot

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May 29, 2013    
 
0.0
 
3.8 (3)
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Ascend FS12T

Kayak Make & Model

Brand:
Ascend
Model:
FS12T
MSRP ($):
499.99
Length (ft):
12

The Ascend “FS12T” is a great kayak for the budget tight kayak fisherman. With an extended keel and performance rocker the FS12T has the maneuverability and tracking to get you to fish. A large open cockpit includes 5 position foot rests, large catch-all tray, adjustable cushioned seat, and other work areas. The FS12T comes standard with 2 flush mount rod holders, large 18” x 10” dry storage hatch, and large tank well and fully scuppered deck. You will be hard pressed to find all these features in another kayak in this price range.

Features:

  • Deluxe padded adjustable seat
  • Bow dry storage hatch
  • Open cockpit storage
  • Molded foot braces
  • 2 flush mounted rod holder
  • Full-tackle rod tender

Specs:

  • Width: 31"
  • Weight: 68 lbs
  • Capacity: 350 lbs

 

Photos

User reviews

Average user rating from: 3 user(s)

Overall rating 
 
3.8
Speed 
 
4.0  (3)
Stability 
 
3.0  (3)
Durability 
 
3.3  (3)
Features 
 
4.0  (3)
Value 
 
4.7  (3)
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Bass Pro Shops has been selling kayaks for several years but took a new step this year which could change expectations. Previously only kayaks in the $1,000 range had a frame seat (think lawnchair style). That all changed earlier this year with the introduction of the redesigned Ascend FS12T. Here are my thoughts:


THE GOOD:

The seat is definitely comfortable. This is such a vast improvement over the previous strap in seat that I had to mention it first. Stability is pretty good as well. I stood up without an assist strap and was able to rock back and forth.

The kayak paddles pretty well. Even in chop it avoids nose walking too much. The width is enough to provide stability but not too much to make it a barge in the water. This is not a kayak for the ocean but should perform well in small to medium sized lakes, rivers and coastal bays.

Possibly the best feature in the Ascend FS12T is the price. At the everyday list price of $549, this is possibly the best entry level kayak available under $600.



NEEDS IMPROVEMENT:

The first thing I would change is the deck layout. There are a couple of recessed areas that don't have scuppers or an ability to drain. I would also stop mounting the rod holder on the right rail. Pre-installed rod holders are rarely where the purchaser wants them, especially the non-flush mounted kind. This one is no different. It's right in the middle of the paddle stroke.

If you are using the seat in a forward position and weigh over about 150 pounds, putting pressure on the foot pegs can move the seat back into the furthest position. This isn't ideal for shorter adult paddlers but works fine for folks at or above six feet tall.

The finish out could use a little work as well. Some padding to reinforce the seat under the deck and a little less sloppy on the sealant around hatches would go a long way.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

All in all, the new Ascend FS12T is a great option for an entry level kayak. The frame seat at the sub $600 price point is breaking the ceiling of options for entry levels. This is definitely worth a test paddle.

From Dean Brown at Bass Pro Shops:

If you do have issues BPS has an Ascend Hotline for anyone with part issues.
417-873-5034
Just give them a call and they can help with replacement parts for Ascend Kayaks.
Ascend kayaks are made by Tracker Boats, right here in the USA.
Overall rating 
 
3.8
Speed 
 
3.0
Stability 
 
4.0
Durability 
 
3.0
Features 
 
4.0
Value 
 
5.0
Chris Payne Reviewed by Chris Payne May 26, 2014
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (27)

2014 Ascend FS12T

Bass Pro Shops has been selling kayaks for several years but took a new step this year which could change expectations. Previously only kayaks in the $1,000 range had a frame seat (think lawnchair style). That all changed earlier this year with the introduction of the redesigned Ascend FS12T. Here are my thoughts:


THE GOOD:

The seat is definitely comfortable. This is such a vast improvement over the previous strap in seat that I had to mention it first. Stability is pretty good as well. I stood up without an assist strap and was able to rock back and forth.

The kayak paddles pretty well. Even in chop it avoids nose walking too much. The width is enough to provide stability but not too much to make it a barge in the water. This is not a kayak for the ocean but should perform well in small to medium sized lakes, rivers and coastal bays.

Possibly the best feature in the Ascend FS12T is the price. At the everyday list price of $549, this is possibly the best entry level kayak available under $600.



NEEDS IMPROVEMENT:

The first thing I would change is the deck layout. There are a couple of recessed areas that don't have scuppers or an ability to drain. I would also stop mounting the rod holder on the right rail. Pre-installed rod holders are rarely where the purchaser wants them, especially the non-flush mounted kind. This one is no different. It's right in the middle of the paddle stroke.

If you are using the seat in a forward position and weigh over about 150 pounds, putting pressure on the foot pegs can move the seat back into the furthest position. This isn't ideal for shorter adult paddlers but works fine for folks at or above six feet tall.

The finish out could use a little work as well. Some padding to reinforce the seat under the deck and a little less sloppy on the sealant around hatches would go a long way.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

All in all, the new Ascend FS12T is a great option for an entry level kayak. The frame seat at the sub $600 price point is breaking the ceiling of options for entry levels. This is definitely worth a test paddle.

From Dean Brown at Bass Pro Shops:

If you do have issues BPS has an Ascend Hotline for anyone with part issues.
417-873-5034
Just give them a call and they can help with replacement parts for Ascend Kayaks.
Ascend kayaks are made by Tracker Boats, right here in the USA.

Pros & Cons

Pros:
Seat, Price
Cons:
Deck layout
Was this review helpful to you? 
Let first start off by saying this, the picture above is the 2012 model, not the current 2013. The difference is that the SCOTTY mount that is in the center has been moved back from what you see, to the flat, closest to the seat. The complaints from owners got the best of Ascend so they changed it. Not a bad idea, but they should have only gone half way, for me anyway. I use spinning reels and where I hold the rod is right in that area for reeling. My bail is constantly hitting the SCOTTY rod holder. It gets annoying.
Other features in the picture that are deceiving are that this looks like a flat bottom boat. It is not. It has quite a beveled hull. You cannot lay it flat it leans to one side or the other.
Now that the myths are out of the way, let me get to what I can. The speed and tracking on this boat is fantastic. It really tracks pretty straight unless you're dragging something like a live well or drag chute or chain. It cuts thought the water very well with the very slim lined bow keel. I also find it a bit hard to keep from feeling like I'm going to tip over because of the hull shape. If I am focusing on tying on a new jig or line I feel a bit wobbly as well.
The rotomolded hull is really thin, so it bends pretty easily. If you tie it down to tight to your car carrier it will ward the hull. It will bounce back but it's still a bit frightening. When you sit down the seat will buckle a bit as well. The Scupper holes that you see on the bottom do not match the top. There are 6 holes in the hull, 2 by your feet, two where the seat is, and two in the well in the rear. Only the ones in the front and rear go all the way through though. The ones in the seat are blocked at the seat area. This means any water that it collects, stays where it is and doesn't drain. There are dimples where the scuppers SHOULD be but it has been recommended by several other reviews to NOT cut through. I have heeded the warning. I'm not really sure what would happen if I did.
The rod holders serve their purpose well enough, didn't like the ones behind the seat but I have learned to deal with them.
The seat is probably the best part of it. Closed-cell custom foam really is super comfortable. Spent several hours in this thing and it was not an issue until the shorts got wet. Then it was the usual swamp butt irritation but not due to the seat itself.
It is listed at 78 pounds but it feels heavier than that.
The only other problem I have with this is that the hull will get water in it EVERY TIME. I don't know yet where it comes in. Even though the hatch at the front is overlapping and rubber sealed, you may want to store whatever you put in there in a dry bag if it isn't meant to get wet.
The hatch is oval and large but it still doesn't allow a lot of storage. You cannot fold the seat down enough to get it in the hatch while transporting. The paddle will not fit because of the expansion foam under the forward portion that is there to give more support to the structure.
For the price this Kayak is pretty good even with the bad things about it.
If you're looking to get into Kayak Fishing with the cost being at a lower price, start off with this boat and work your way through the issues as I have.
Overall rating 
 
4.2
Speed 
 
5.0
Stability 
 
3.0
Durability 
 
4.0
Features 
 
4.0
Value 
 
5.0
Brian Martin Reviewed by Brian Martin May 30, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (6)

Maybe, maybe not!

Let first start off by saying this, the picture above is the 2012 model, not the current 2013. The difference is that the SCOTTY mount that is in the center has been moved back from what you see, to the flat, closest to the seat. The complaints from owners got the best of Ascend so they changed it. Not a bad idea, but they should have only gone half way, for me anyway. I use spinning reels and where I hold the rod is right in that area for reeling. My bail is constantly hitting the SCOTTY rod holder. It gets annoying.
Other features in the picture that are deceiving are that this looks like a flat bottom boat. It is not. It has quite a beveled hull. You cannot lay it flat it leans to one side or the other.
Now that the myths are out of the way, let me get to what I can. The speed and tracking on this boat is fantastic. It really tracks pretty straight unless you're dragging something like a live well or drag chute or chain. It cuts thought the water very well with the very slim lined bow keel. I also find it a bit hard to keep from feeling like I'm going to tip over because of the hull shape. If I am focusing on tying on a new jig or line I feel a bit wobbly as well.
The rotomolded hull is really thin, so it bends pretty easily. If you tie it down to tight to your car carrier it will ward the hull. It will bounce back but it's still a bit frightening. When you sit down the seat will buckle a bit as well. The Scupper holes that you see on the bottom do not match the top. There are 6 holes in the hull, 2 by your feet, two where the seat is, and two in the well in the rear. Only the ones in the front and rear go all the way through though. The ones in the seat are blocked at the seat area. This means any water that it collects, stays where it is and doesn't drain. There are dimples where the scuppers SHOULD be but it has been recommended by several other reviews to NOT cut through. I have heeded the warning. I'm not really sure what would happen if I did.
The rod holders serve their purpose well enough, didn't like the ones behind the seat but I have learned to deal with them.
The seat is probably the best part of it. Closed-cell custom foam really is super comfortable. Spent several hours in this thing and it was not an issue until the shorts got wet. Then it was the usual swamp butt irritation but not due to the seat itself.
It is listed at 78 pounds but it feels heavier than that.
The only other problem I have with this is that the hull will get water in it EVERY TIME. I don't know yet where it comes in. Even though the hatch at the front is overlapping and rubber sealed, you may want to store whatever you put in there in a dry bag if it isn't meant to get wet.
The hatch is oval and large but it still doesn't allow a lot of storage. You cannot fold the seat down enough to get it in the hatch while transporting. The paddle will not fit because of the expansion foam under the forward portion that is there to give more support to the structure.
For the price this Kayak is pretty good even with the bad things about it.
If you're looking to get into Kayak Fishing with the cost being at a lower price, start off with this boat and work your way through the issues as I have.

Was this review helpful to you? 
For someone brand new to the sport of kayak fishing, this is the boat for you. The amount of features you have avaviable for the small price to pay makes this an ideal starter boat.

A very sleek hull makes this boat relatively fast and cuts right thru waves with no issue. Getting the boat up to a decent speed is easy and the boat will track welltoo. However, this feature makes the stability suffer a bit tho. Reaching for gear in the tankwell can be a delicate operation at times. The boat is a tad on the heavy side. Manageable by one person but no ideal to carry any sory of distance or load onto a higher vehicle.

The additional features of the boat are the selling point. The padded seat (included) is very comfortable and makes sitting in the boat for extended time much easier. Behind the seat, 2 flush mount rod holders and a large tankwell leave plenty of room for gear storage. The large hatch up front also offers good "dry" storage. The front rod holder is in a good position and wont interfere with paddling.

Overll the Ascend FS12T is a perfect fit boat for an intro to yak fishing. While there are limitations, the features and price far out weight the drawbacks.
Overall rating 
 
3.4
Speed 
 
4.0
Stability 
 
2.0
Durability 
 
3.0
Features 
 
4.0
Value 
 
4.0
Travers deGroot Reviewed by Travers deGroot May 30, 2013
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (1)

Ascend FS12T

For someone brand new to the sport of kayak fishing, this is the boat for you. The amount of features you have avaviable for the small price to pay makes this an ideal starter boat.

A very sleek hull makes this boat relatively fast and cuts right thru waves with no issue. Getting the boat up to a decent speed is easy and the boat will track welltoo. However, this feature makes the stability suffer a bit tho. Reaching for gear in the tankwell can be a delicate operation at times. The boat is a tad on the heavy side. Manageable by one person but no ideal to carry any sory of distance or load onto a higher vehicle.

The additional features of the boat are the selling point. The padded seat (included) is very comfortable and makes sitting in the boat for extended time much easier. Behind the seat, 2 flush mount rod holders and a large tankwell leave plenty of room for gear storage. The large hatch up front also offers good "dry" storage. The front rod holder is in a good position and wont interfere with paddling.

Overll the Ascend FS12T is a perfect fit boat for an intro to yak fishing. While there are limitations, the features and price far out weight the drawbacks.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 
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