Kosciuszko National Park is set to become more accessible with an all-terrain power wheelchair called the Terrain Hopper.

Disabled Wintersport Australia (DWA) is piloting the versatile four-by-four power wheelchair, with the aim of making Mount Kosciuszko more inclusive to people with disability.

Helen Watters is a passionate lifelong skier and Snowy Mountains resident with restricted mobility, which over the past 15 years has prevented her from participating in outdoor activities that are available in her own backyard.

Watters has been working closely with Disabled Wintersport Australia to test the all-terrain power chair, conducting accessible audits of hiking trails in the region.

“The Terrain Hopper allows me to go for a walk with my husband and experience outdoor activities in ways I haven’t been able to do for years,” Watters said. “Terrain Hopper makes that possible, taking you over all terrains, and even through water where a standard manual or motorised wheelchair could not pass.”

Disabled Wintersport Australia is in the process of developing its green season hiking and trail program which will include the availability of the Terrain Hopper for locals and visitors to the region, for both younger, older age groups and visiting school groups.

“The Terrain Hopper makes the Snowy Mountains region more inclusive, and to date the Terrain Hopper has been taken on a number of pilot hikes with people ranging from ages 10 years old to 80 years old along with our hiking guides,” Disabled Wintersport Australia CEO Tony Murray said. 

Photo: Helen Watters