All-terrain wheelchairs promise excitement and adventure. Even places that were off-limits before can be tackled with the correct wheelchair.


All-terrain wheelchairs come in a variety of shapes and sizes. For this guide we’ve concentrated on manual wheelchairs rather than powered wheelchairs – but it’s worth noting that powered wheelchairs such as the Mybility Four X DL are great with gradients – whereas manual wheelchairs will require good upper body strength from the user to achieve the same results.

Generally speaking there are wheelchairs that can handle mud, grass, cobbles, rocky areas, steep slopes, steps, high kerbs, sand or even snow – although they may be too big or dirty to use in the home.


Perhaps the all-terrain wheelchair you’re looking at will take you directly to where you want to go – or you may be a hobbyist rambler, in which case consider how you’ll transport it. As with other wheelchairs, you may find a fold-up model or one with quick release wheels.


All-terrain wheelchairs should be kitted out as such. Smooth indoor friendly tyres can’t always cut it whereas chunky tyres can literally grip obstacles and provide stability. Similarly, on rough terrain your shoulders and lower back will thank you for selecting a model with decent suspension.


Even if this is a ‘leisure wheelchair’ it still needs to fit you properly – especially if you’re intending to get hot and sweaty – pressure sores from poor seating arrangements can be dangerous.

Big wheels at the front

In everyday environments small front castors help with balance and steering but these can become suddenly redundant and overwhelmed in more challenging settings.

Mountain Trike have a range of wheelchairs with large drive-wheels at the front. They still have castors but they are raised off the ground so that there’s still an anti-tip feature. The Mountain Trike name comes from the single wheel positioned at the back. Mountain Trike have also pioneered a system whereby instead of running wet or muddy rims through the hands and using brakes to steer – they have a ratchet system that enables users to propel themselves by ‘rowing’. It can also transfer the necessary torque needed to carefully clamber over barriers and take on gradients.

The pivot steering lever also acts as a joystick controlling the rear turning wheel, meaning that unlike on standard wheelchairs there is no need to use the brakes and run down any momentum gained. (It also makes for smoother steering as well.) Hydraulic brakes and air suspension keep the wheelchair balanced, comfortable and safe along the way and yet it folds up neatly for stowing back in the car etc.

Mountain Trike: £4,495

See also:
MT Evo: £4,695

The Evo was developed with tetraplegics, quadriplegics and people with limited hand function and has simpler controls.

MT Push: £3,495

MT Push is a ‘buddy chair’. It does not have the unique lever drive system where riders can propel themselves but has an adjustable push handle instead.

All of the Mountain Trike models achieved five stars in our product reviews.