Southern West Virginia is home to many notorious trails including the number one ranked trail in the National Parks system, the Endless Wall Trail in the New River Gorge. The stunning cliff lines, steep waterfalls, and heavily wooded single track trails all get the glory but are not always accessible to families limited to rolling with a stroller.
Strollers are a wonderful way to get active outside with your family. Whether you have a tiny infant that needs to be carried the duration of the hike, or toddlers and young primary kids who need periodic rests, a stroller provides. Children and adults with disabilities that use adaptive equipment and wheelchairs may also benefit from some of the same trails that strollers use.
One way to be sure you can use a stroller is to look for trails that are “Wheelchair Accessible”. These designated trails have been built or modified to accommodate wheelchairs and provide gentle inclines and ramps instead of or in addition to stairs. The National Park Service and State Parks are great places to find these trails and walking paths.
Not all strollers are created equal – they come in many shapes and sizes with a range of different abilities. An inexpensive umbrella stroller would be well suited for the Wheelchair Accessible trails, paved rail trails, and boardwalks. Trail strollers and some jogging strollers can handle slightly more challenging terrain. Trail strollers are pricey when purchased new at retail, but you can frequently find them at children’s consignment shops and online yard-sales. A quality stroller will add years to the fun you can have with your kids and open up many more opportunities for outdoor physical activity.
Active Southern West Virginia provides FREE Walking Groups in many communities in southern West Virginia that all are invited to attend. Many of the routes taken are stroller friendly, making them easier for families to attend together.
Active SWV also has a Trail Resource Page that is helpful for anyone looking to get out on their own. Here we have compiled a list of top stroller-friendly trails in the primary six county area we serve.