All Terrain Track Chairs Are Now Available At Some Minnesota State Parks
The state of Minnesota has set a fantastic example for state parks all over the country with the addition of All-Terrain Track Chairs making them more inclusive for everyone. As of June 2 people who have mobile disabilities will now be able to use these chairs and also specialized beach chairs in order to have access to trails and beaches that otherwise would be inaccessible to them.
According to Minnesota DNR the chairs cost $14,500 and most were paid for by the states Park and Trails Legacy fund and one of the chairs was donated. Jamie McBride, a state parks and recreation area consultant said: " Users can go over grass, mud, sand, and snow and can climb hills and even ford shallow water. Other nifty features include a zero-turn radius and an electric tilt mechanism that allows users to stay level in the chair while traversing hills and uneven terrain."
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Assistant Commissioner Shannon Lotthammer said to the Duluth News Tribune (Paywall)
Minnesota state parks are for everyone to enjoy, regardless of age or ability, We hope to provide a system of adaptive-supported recreation opportunities, from backyard to backcountry.
According to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the chairs are currently available or will be available soon at six different parks throughout the state of Minnesota. The chairs are free to use but you are asked to call ahead and reserve a chair before you arrive. A state park vehicle permit is required for all vehicles entering the park but they do have discounted vehicle permits if you have a vehicle hang tag for disabilities.
The list below is where the chairs are available to reserve in Minnesota:
- Camden State Park, 507-872-7031
- Crow Wing State Park, 218-825-3075
- Lake Bemidji State Park, 218-308-2300 (available mid-June 2022)
- McCarthy Beach State Park, 218-274-7200 (Beach chair)
- Maplewood State Park, 218-863-8383 (available early fall 2022)
- Myre-Big Island State Park, 507-668-7060
The Minnesota DNR had said that if these chairs become popular they will consider adding them to more state parks.