Last fall I went on a very fun adventure to Manuels River to try out an all terrain wheelchair that can be booked out from the Manuels River Interpretation Centre and used on their trails.
The chair is called the Grit Freedom Chair and has been available at Manuel’s for the last two years thanks to funding from the Community Healthy Living Fund and the Department of Children, Seniors and Social Development (Government of NL). Since then it has mainly been used during educational programs as students in wheelchairs often visit with their class and are able to participate in the full field trip with use of this all terrain wheelchair. It is also available for use by anyone in the general public with limited mobility free of charge during hours that the Interpretation Centre is open.
It was definitely quite a work out to propel myself with the levers and would take some getting used to for me to push myself independently on the trails, but it also has some great push handles which made it way easier for my husband to push me along the gravel and up some hills. It was such a smooth ride compared to my own wheelchair, and it was so much fun to use and to get the opportunity to go on a nice scenic stroll on trails I wouldn’t normally have access to.
I highly recommend reaching out to Manuels River to test out this chair if you or a family member/friend are a mobility aid user and would like to get out there exploring in a much easier and more comfortable way. You can book in advance or inquire at the front desk.