In a Nutshell:
The Mountain Trike Wheelchair is a rugged manual design good enough to compete head to head with powered hiking chairs. It’s amazing. Recommended for anyone looking for a great manual hiking chair. One of the most versatile, robust manual chairs in its class.
Ease of Use
Is your mobility issue keeping you from enjoying the great outdoors as you once did? For whatever reason, have the various powered all-terrain wheelchairs you’ve looked at left you unimpressed? Are you looking for a high-quality, rugged, go-anywhere manual design to address your mobility needs?
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, then you’re going to love our in-depth review of the mighty Mountain Trike.
In our recent roundup review, the Mountain Trike placed a respectable third, beating out two powered hiking chairs, which speaks volume about its quality. It’s a fantastic, immensely capable design that can take you anywhere you have the strength to go.
Note that there are actually two “variants” of the base model: The Evo and the MT Push. We won’t be covering these in detail in the rest of this review, as they are functionally similar to the base model in most respects, but we will summarize the differences here:
Note that if you ordered the base model and later, your circumstances would change, and you find that you’d need more help, you could buy a conversion kit that will turn your base model into an MT Push.
Ready to take a closer look? Let’s go!
An Overview of the Mountain Trike All Terrain Wheelchair
As the name of the chair indicates, the Mountain Trike Wheelchair is a three-wheeled design, with the two 24” drive wheels in the front, and a single smaller wheel in the back, so similar to the GRIT Freedom Chair and the ORC, but with the wheels in the opposite configuration.
There are also two anti-tipping casters in the front, which increases the Mountain Trike’s ability to traverse downhill slopes.
The wheelchair comes to us from England and can fairly be considered to be the British “version” of the GRIT Freedom Chair. They’re not 100% identical, but close enough to make the comparison an apt one. The Freedom Chair is perhaps a shade more useful in urban settings, while the Mountain Trike is optimized for off-road use.
Here are the basic stats of the Mountain Trike Off Road Wheelchair:
As Adjustable (And Comfortable) As You Want It to Be
Even in its default configuration, the Mountain Trike All Terrain Wheelchair is relatively adjustable. You can tweak the height of the footrest, and the backrest can be adjusted both forward and backward. In addition to that, the footrest flips up and is removable, allowing for easier transfers into and out of the chair.
Regarding comfort, the seat cushions are tension adjustable and molded. The foam padding is removable, and the polyester fabric covering them can be wiped clean with a damp cloth. Even the seat though, can be customized, which we’ll talk about in the next section.
Storage, Customization Options, and Extras
There’s almost no limit to the number of custom features you can order on your wheelchair. If you have a particular need, want, or requirement, don’t hesitate to contact your rep and ask about it. The company has a long, demonstrated history of being willing to work with their customers.
Where extras are concerned, again, the sky’s the limit. The company is more than willing to work with you to incorporate any “extra” you have in mind into the design of your chair. While there are limits to what they can do, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Among other things, the company offers:
The company is also in regular communication with their user base, and they post regular updates to their blog with recommended “hacks” and third-party add-ons that their customers are experimenting with. It’s an excellent source of inspiration and ideas that will add even more versatility to an already fantastic design.
Two final things to note here in our Mountain Trike review: Pay close attention to the structure of the seats on the Trikes you see on the photos and videos on the company’s website.
If at all possible, test drive one before you buy (more on that in a moment). If you’re not happy with the seat, you can get a special one custom-designed for you. Here’s the company’s brochure on that:
Second, as good as the chair is, there’s one area that leaves us underwhelmed, and that is the lack of onboard storage.
Sure, there are aftermarket products you can buy to address this, and you can almost certainly work with the company to get a storage solution engineered into your machine, but in our opinion, given that this chair was designed to go anywhere, we regard storage as an essential standard feature. It’s not a deal breaker, but its absence weakens the model and lowered its score in our eyes.
Finding a Vendor
In Europe and Asia, you’ll find no shortage of vendors selling the all-terrain wheelchair. In the US, there are just two: A-Z Mobility in Plainfield, IL, and Spokes’n Motion in Lakewood, CO. If you want to take one of these machines for a test drive, and you live in the US, those are about the only options you’ve got.
For a full list of vendor locations worldwide, see: Mountain Trike Vendors
The Mountain Trike USA gets high marks here, collapsing into a nice, compact cube 28” on a side. It fits nicely into any hatchback or SUV and will even fit into the available trunk space of most full-sized sedans.
If that doesn’t work for you, as mentioned earlier, the company sells and recommends a variety of racks and ramps so you can store the Trike on the back of your vehicle, preserving your trunk and storage space for luggage and other assorted gear.
Very Easy to Use
We guarantee here in our Mountain Trike Wheelchair review that even if you’ve never used a lever-action chair, you’ll pick it up in a matter of minutes. Expect to spend five or ten minutes getting used to the handling, but after that, you’re ready to take on just about anything Mother Nature can throw at you.
Note that the Mountain Trike requires a fair amount of upper body strength to use well. Your ability to traverse challenging terrains in the chair is going to be tied directly to how strong you are, and how much stamina you’ve got. Again though, if you buy the chair in its default configuration, and sometime later, realize that you’d be better off having an all-terrain chair that can be pushed by an assistant, you can buy a conversion kit.
Pros & Cons of the Mountain Trike Wheelchair
We like everything about the Mountain Trike but the price. You’re going to pay a premium for a chair imported from England, and you’ll pay an additional premium for the extreme level of customization the company offers. There’s just no way around it. World-class products are pricey.
On the other hand, this is probably the last hiking chair you’ll never need to purchase. With proper care and maintenance, it’ll last for years.
Mountain Trike Wheelchair Review Conclusion
We love, and highly recommend the Mountain Trike Wheelchair, but note that it is something of a niche product. If you don’t plan on testing your limits on extreme outdoor terrain, then this is almost certain to be much more wheelchair than you’re likely to need. There’s no point spending tons of money for the functionality you’ll never use.
That said, if you’re in the market for a go-anywhere chair, don’t exceed the chair’s recommended height and weight limits, and plan on testing both your limits and the limits of the Mountain Trike, we absolutely recommend it. You won’t be disappointed.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- Mountain Trike, Official Brand Website.
- All-Terrain Wheelchair, Tech Briefs.
- Wheelchairs – Footrests, Medicine Encyclopedia.
- Understanding a Bit More About Wheelchair Footrests, Pride on Wheels.
- How to Choose the Proper Wheelchair Cushions, Wheelchair Information.