For an outdoor enthusiast like myself, the allure of a National Park is hard to resist. The National Park Service preserves natural, cultural, and historical sites all across the United States. Some of the most breathtaking landscapes are within these park boundaries. Thankfully, the National Park Service has taken it upon themselves to offer a FREE lifetime pass for US Citizens that have a permanent disability. It allows you to be admitted for FREE to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites.
“Backpacking was a big part of life in my twenties. It was also what threw me into an existential crisis when—after I got my first wheelchair—somebody asked, "Do you like backpacking?" How do you answer that question, if you really like something, but you can't actually do it? Ever since I started wheelchair hiking, I have wanted to go wheelchair backpacking. I think I may have finally accomplished that goal.“
In her new series, IT'S A GRIT LIFE, Nerissa discusses how she has learned how to utilize a team in order to get over terrain that would be beyond her skill level as a solo hiker. You'll even read about Nerissa summiting a 14,000 foot mountain in Colorado!
The great thing about the outdoors is that no matter what time of the year it is, there is always something to do. Sometimes you have to adapt to the weather or the temperature in order to properly enjoy things, though. Luckily, my GRIT Freedom Chair is a versatile, all terrain wheelchair. It allows me to enjoy all types of activities no matter what the seasons throw at me.
“I have always believed (and this has been strongly re-enforced by a progressive disease) that if there's something that you love to do and you can somehow do, then you should do it now. With disability, the idea of what you can do must be creatively and flexibly supplemented with different ways of doing things and with adaptive tools, such as the Freedom Chair.”