February 24, 2024 6:57 am
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For more inclusive outdoor experiences, Georgians with impaired mobility look to different tools

Credit: Sofi Gratas/GPB News

Sofi Gratas, GPB News

An annual hunt hosted by the Georgia Department for Natural Resources utilizes special training, gear and equipment to improve outdoor accessibility.

Max Richardson
Max Richardson and his dad, Mitch, at the shooting range before the adaptive hunt. The special-ordered trigger is long enough for Max to pull without help. Credit: Sofi Gratas/GPB News

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In this (virtual) postcard from GPB’s Sofi Gratas, you will hear from Max and Mitch Richardson, Kim Morris-Zarneke with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Resource Division, and Chip and Ken Madren, about how with the right tools, outdoor inclusivity is possible.

They participated in an adaptive hunt near Covington, Ga. on Jan. 9, 2024 to demonstrate clothing, equipment, gear and transportation to make outdoor activities more accessible. 

For the some 14% of Georgians with impaired mobility, enjoying outdoor recreation can be a challenge.

That’s why every year, Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources hosts the adaptive hunt alongside other events for novice and experienced outdoor enthusiasts as part of its mission to make things like hunting, fishing and archery easier to navigate in the state’s parks and wild spaces.

During the hunt, attendees and volunteers get full use of DNR tools and resources, like special mechanized wheel chairs and rifle supports. 

Specialized Action Trackchairs for people with mobility impairments are available at 11 Georgia state parks through the organization All Terrain Georgia.

Chip and Ken Madren
Ken and his son Chip Madren have been hunting together since Chip was a child. After recovering from brain cancer, now, Chip works with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources as an education specialist and accessibility coordinator. Credit: Sofi Gratas/GPB News

This story comes to OTP Tribune through a reporting partnership with GPB News, a non-profit newsroom covering the state of Georgia.