Barrier-free Trails

Finding a wheelchair-friendly trail can be challenging. In addition to general information about what you see along the way, wheelchair hikers need to know things like the cross slope (it can affect how a chair performs.) They also need to know the type of surface they’ll be traveling on, and the angle of the trail itself — how steep is it?

Trails don’t have to specifically be designated ADA-accessible to be wheelchair friendly, but it helps. If they don’t meet ADA requirements but they’re wide enough for a wheelchair, trails are called ‘barrier-free’. That means that in ideal maintenance conditions, a wheelchair hiker could navigate their way along the route.

We’ve compiled this list of our favorite barrier-free hikes, though there are many more out there. Get inspired, head out, and of course write a trip report when you’re back! While this list has been assembled with wheelchair-hikers in mind, it’s a useful resource if you’re hiking with a stroller or walker as well.