The Eco Travel Network is delighted to welcome the newest member of our funky eco-travel team – Meet ‘Boswell’, the electric all-terrain wheelchair.
We collected Boswell from Molten Rock Ltd last week and are busy finding out what he can and can’t do and possible Boma routes before (we hope) he gets hired out to locals and visitors with limited mobility for them to enjoy accompanying friends or family on walks along trails and bridleways in the Brecon Beacons National Park. The plan is to run him as a 1 year experiment in partnership with our members and see how well that works.
What we’ve discovered so far is that he’s fantastic fun – especially going uphill (when his walking companions are puffing along behind trying to keep up!) and for negotiating rocky, uneven ground and boma-ing through the odd stream. He’s even managing mud quite well (and we have a LOT of that at this time of year) up until the mud (if particularly sticky) gets solidly clogged between the rear wheels and the mudguards.
Also, everyone we encounter wants to have a go so that’s good.
What we’ve struggled with more so far is finding good Boma routes which we can recommend to visitors that are do-able and also a bit challenging and interesting. We keep finding excellent stretches which are simply delightful but then encounter sudden narrowing of the path or padlocked gates – the attached picture being one example where our attempt to straddle the path eventually failed and this is a Roman Road with bridleway status! Local friends and colleagues are all chipping in with suggestions and we also have a small number of wheelchair users keen to help us testing and finding routes.
We’ve experienced our first punctures (thorns) and are grateful to Bike and Hikes in Brecon for mending those and improving (hopefully) the resilience of the Boma tyres.
For people with local knowledge, the Mon&Brec canal path and the Brinore tramroad in Talybont on Usk are both fine.
Do get in touch with us firstname.lastname@example.org if you have suggestions of routes or are interested in trying the Boma for yourself. Our plan is for him to be available for public hire from March but we haven’t worked out the details of that yet. Watch this space.