Whether you like to ski, sail, hang glide, or climb, a wheelchair should never be a reason to forego the exhilaration of these outdoor experiences while on vacation. In fact, exciting global destinations call out to the thrill seeker in all of us. While lounging by a pool or sampling the local cuisine can be enjoyable for all travelers, getting out and experiencing the beauty of the local nature firsthand will no doubt leave a more indelible memory. With that in mind, Chattanooga, Tennessee and its Cumberland Plateau could serve as an idyllic travel stop.


Water Sports

Near Chattanooga, Lake Cumberland’s beautiful waters provide the opportunity for many adaptive water sports, from kayaking to water skiing to whitewater rafting. Burnside Marina, on the Eastern side of Lake Cumberland, offers houseboat rentals and easy access to enjoy and of your favorite water sports. Modern technology provides a plethora of adaptive equipment, including kayaks and water ski gear.


Adaptive Climbing

Following in the path of Mark Wellman, the first paraplegic to reach the summit of both El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, those in wheelchairs have a wide range of options when it comes to enjoying the adrenaline rush of rock climbing here. As with any rock climbers, personal safety is always paramount. Maintaining safety as an adaptive climber is attained by selecting comfortable adaptive equipment and receiving the best possible training before approaching the challenge of scaling any rock structure. Newer adaptive climbers visiting the Cumberland Plateau could visit Stone Fort and take advantage of the bouldering nearby, while experts might want to check out more advanced crags with the help of local climbing guides like High Point Climbing and Fitness.


Sports, Arts, + Recreation of Chattanooga (SPARC)

In advance of your trip, you may want to reach out to Jerry Hightower, who leads this local chapter of the Disabled Sports USA in the Chattanooga Area. By visiting their website or emailing Jerry directly, you can learn about upcoming adaptive sports taking place. They offer a wide range of activities, including wheelchair basketball, cycling, water sports, and even Ironman events.

If you’re someone who’s always loved the outdoors and enjoys the rush of challenging sports, consider an adventure travel option to Chattanooga when making your next vacation plans. It will provide a thrilling rush of adrenaline at the time as well as a visceral reminder of your trip for years to come.

Avatar photo Ali MacLeod (3 Posts)

Ali MacLeod worked for many years in the healthcare sector before reverting to her first love of writing. She now contributes to a number of blogs and websites. Ali is married with two daughters and loves the work / life balance that freelance writing allows her to enjoy.

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