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Free all-terrain wheelchair for Great Ocean Walk
The stunning views and fascinating flora and fauna of Victoria’s Great Ocean Walk are now accessible to more adults and children following the introduction of an all-terrain wheelchair at the Apollo Bay Visitors Information Centre.
Available to borrow for free at the Information Centre, the TrailRiders are best managed with two chair operators or ‘sherpas’, with four chair operators advisable for long walks or trails with significant gradients so individuals can take breaks.
Commenting on the initiative, Parks Victoria Team Leader Sylvia van der Peet stated “the all-terrain wheel chair or TrailRider is perfect for helping the whole family or groups of friends enjoy more spectacular scenery and challenging walks together.
“For example, the 9.6 kilometre section of the Great Ocean Walk from Cape Otway Lighthouse to Aire River campground is not suitable for standard wheelchairs but is accessible using the TrailRider.
“The track takes you along sandy beaches and through low hills rich with native flora, as well as along cliff tops which offer breathtaking views of the coastline. Aire River and surrounding coastline can be admired from the Escarpment Lookout. There is a rest bench at this lookout, which may be appreciated by chair operators!
“There are also plenty of easier and shorter walk options along the Great Ocean Walk which can be enjoyed with the TrailRider, including the section along the Marengo Marine Sanctuary.
“The stunning 30 minute walking track from Gibson Steps to the famous Twelve Apostles is both wonderfully scenic and offers a great practice trail for new TrailRider users and Sherpas.
“Tracks and trails in the Great Otway National Park can also be enjoyed with the TrailRider. I’m really encouraging visitors to try the beautiful Lake Elizabeth area which has many interesting trails as well as picnic tables and toilets nearby. Lucky visitors may even catch a glimpse of the local platypus.”
The TrailRider Initiative is part of Parks Victoria’s ‘Healthy Parks Healthy People’ approach to park management, which recognises that access to the natural environment improves health and well-being. Reconnecting with nature can help lift depression, improve energy, and boost overall well-being and mental health.
The Great Ocean Walk is a 105 kilometre spectacular coastal trail, starting at Apollo Bay Visitor Information Centre and finishing at the Twelve Apostles Visitor Centre.
27th January 2016 - PARKS VICTORIA INTRODUCES BEACH WHEELCHAIR AT WILSONS PROMONTORY
16th October 2015 - IMPROVING PUBLIC ACCESS AND SAFETY ALONG VICTORIA’S COAST
16th June 2015 - TRAILRIDER ALLOWS WHEELCHAIR-BOUND AUSTRALIANS TO GO HIKING
9th December 2014 - FLOATING WHEELCHAIR GENERATING INTEREST FROM AUSTRALIAN AQUATIC ENVIRONMENTS
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