New all-terrain track chair improves access to Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
There’s a new way for redwoods enthusiasts with mobility challenges to explore the stunning old-growth groves at Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park. The park now offers an electric all-terrain Action Trackchair for use on designated trails, including more rugged trails that aren’t suitable for standard wheelchairs. This sweet ride is available free of charge, and visitors can reserve the chair for a three-hour block of forest exploration.
In a statement from Redwood National and State Parks, David Echt of San Rafael, California, described his experience as the first person to take the track chair out at Prairie Creek Redwoods. “I was once an avid hiker and have backpacked throughout the Sierra Nevada mountains before being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) at 35 years old,” Echt said. “I have lived with MS for half my life. This chair gave me freedom I haven’t had for many years.”
The new track chair was made possible via a partnership with David’s Chair, an Oregon-based nonprofit that seeks to provide people with mobility challenges with independence, freedom, and access to the great outdoors. David’s Chair is the legacy of David Hatrick, an avid outdoorsman who was diagnosed with ALS in 2017. Since its founding, the non-profit has placed permanent track chairs in several Oregon locations. Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park is the first spot in California to offer this exciting option to visitors.
For more resources for outdoor enthusiasts with mobility challenges, see Save the Redwood League’s Disabled Hikers Guide.