"Trail is ACCESSIBLE to the first overlook"
Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge
There is an art to selecting trails to pushike with Kellisa and I like to think that we've gotten pretty good from so many years of experience. We've traveled long and hard only to find accessible trails, well not so accessible. We've also stumbled upon trails with no indication of accessibility and they've been beautiful to push Kellisa on.
We like to read as many trail reports as possible looking for key words (mud, stairs, rocks, climbs, etc.) that may tip us off to research another trail. If we are confident after reports, we then carefully study pictures looking for barriers. If all checks out, we have a good success rate. We are writing the first book on pushiking to help others navigate through the process of selecting and then pushiking trails.
The trail we selected in Mississippi had a short section at the beginning that was accessible. Because there is so much information about accessible trails as many are paved, we're not going to feature too many miles of accessible trails in the book. The trail in Mississippi went beyond the accessible portion to complete a loop.
Little did we know that the accessible part of the trail would have a barrier almost immediately. Now we could easily navigate the obstacles and I would guess most people pushing a jog stroller or off-road mobility chair could as well, I have serious doubts that most people wheeling themselves could complete the "accessible" section of this trail. Lastly, I'm not an expert, but I'm pretty sure motorized wheelchairs would have no chance on the navigating the platform section at the beginning of this trail. While I'm thankful Kellisa and I were able to complete the loop, I can't help but think about those who might travel to this trail only to be turned around before really even getting started.
View from the first overlook: