Let me preface this by stating six years ago when I was injured I sold my XJ (Jeep Cherokee) and missed having a 4x4. I ended up getting a two door VW that was much more accessible for someone with a SCI.

Earlier this year I decided life was short and I would drive a Jeep again. I mainly missed getting into the back country and camping. Unfortunately my VW wasn't up for the destinations I had in mind. That said I picked up a used JK with a 3.5" lift and 35" KM2s. (It's got a bunch of other goodies too!)

While the purchase was 100% impractical, I should mention the purchase was made not knowing how I would get into it or how I could modify it with hand controls. However, I was determined I would find a way in and be able to brake down my wheelchair in the process too.

The modifications were rather easy as I first installed my portable set of hand controls until I could get some Menox hand controls permanently installed. I decided on sticking with Menox since I have the same set up in my VW. Second, I prefer the controls on the right-side and clear for transferring into the vehicle. Finally, I find the Menox more aesthetically pleasing and requiring less modifications to the dash. Really the only other SCI related modification was a velcro handle which attaches to the roll bar.

I'm happy to report the last nine months of life has been a bit greener. Over the summer I completed a solo cross-country trip totaling over 5,300 miles across 10 states. Most of that time was spent off-road and camping in the back country of Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, etc.

My point in posting this is to inform others with SCI that you don't have to give up your prior lifestyle for good. I was under the impression such a trip would be impossible for someone in a wheelchair. However, I would like to think I have proved that wrong and have the pictures to prove it...