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BUTTE — Before her accident, Liz Ann Kudrna was an avid mountain biker. In 2008, she and two other friends went hiking on Mt. Cowen at the Western Beartooth Mountains in Montana. A large rock slid down the mountain and hit her in the chest sending her into a free fall.

"I fell backward and fell onto my back right away and severed my spinal cord and tumbled down the hill and a friend caught me – I actually wasn’t rescued until the next day," Kudrna said.

But Kudrna wasn’t about to let go of mountain biking. At rehab, she discovered hand cycling.

"I knew as soon as I even talked to the rec therapist, I knew I’m getting a handcycle. I need that," Kudrna said. Kudrna says she still loves going out into nature, but there’s an accessibility issue for those who rely on wheelchairs and handcycles to get around the trails.

"Many trails are not accessible and we have the same desire to get out and away from the fire road. We want to get on to trails that take you a little further into the backcountry or enable you to see more wildflowers," Kudrna said.

According to the group ‘Accessible Nature,’ there are only 25 trails in Montana that are ADA accessible (The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 or ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability.).

The length of the paved trails range from just under a mile to 11 miles.One of the shortest trails is […]

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