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March 31, 2010 > Adventures with wheelchair hiker

Adventures with wheelchair hiker

Submitted By Shelly Lewis

The East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) has partnered with wheelchair hiker and motivational speaker Bob Coomber, aka 4WheelBob, to provide an online hiking series geared toward accessible hiking trails, titled "Adventures with 4WheelBob." Coomber will profile flat or slightly graded trails in the EBRPD that can accommodate wheelchairs, mobility devices, parents with strollers, young children on bikes or anyone looking for a pleasant place to enjoy nature and the outdoors. As a bonus, he will highlight a "challenge" hike of greater length and ability.

Coomber is well-known in the East Bay as an active hiker, writer, and speaker. He became disabled after diabetes caused severe and irreversible osteoporosis. A life-long hiker, he soon experimented with easy, outdoors excursions and has become a staple of local newspaper and television shows - that guy in a wheelchair who does not believe in limits.

On August 24, 2007, Coomber was the first person in a wheelchair to reach the summit of California's third highest peak, 14,246' White Mountain. He is also the first in a wheelchair to summit Mt. Diablo, North Peak and Mission Peak in Fremont.

He is a volunteer ambassador with EBRPD and an appointed member of the Park Advisory Committee.

"A day in our Regional Parks is a chance to get close to nature, encourage exercise and enable all who venture onto a trail to take in a thousand wonders. I hope many people take advantage of the amazing trails and sights and sounds of each of our Regional Parks," says Coomber.

Coomber was inducted into the California Outdoors Hall of Fame in January 2007. He was one of only 27 Americans to receive the President's Council on Physical Fitness Community Leadership Award in 2008. In October 2010, he plans to conquer Africa's highest peak, Kilimanjaro, and be the first unassisted wheelchair to make the journey. The trip will also serve to distribute 200 wheelchairs in Arusha, Tanzania, in partnership with The Wheelchair Foundation of Danville.


Adventures with 4WheelBob can be found on EBRPD's website at www.ebparks.org/bobcoomber. Additional hikes will be updated monthly on the website.

For more information contact Shelly Lewis, Public Affairs on (510) 544-2208 or email slewis@ebparks.org

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