Seasons of growth

5th of January, 2016

Horizons appear ahead as trax traveled fall behind. Mongolia came and we triumphed, completing our goal. 26,000 km of discovery, environment, culture & self. Of lost lands and pure souls. Be englightened www.traxchallenge.co.nz/News  Our travels also took us to Whistler Canada where we unloaded a harness bringing accessibility to www.wedgerafting.com and www.tagwhistler.com Now returned to a magical summer with fresh exciting goals. New harnesses are being designed that will open up so many opportunities for all abilities to experience freedom through adventure with ease. More clients are enjoying our adventures, with more activities and adventure companies joining our ever growing team of legend. Our Trax director Jezza even tried his hand at guest speaking....and enjoyed it.

 

Mongol Rally

4th of November, 2014

Makingtrax and team are undertaking a trip of a lifetime to prove life is an adventure and nothing should hold you back: London to Mongolia, 10,000 miles. Our mission….
1. Change the way society things about disability
2. Get outdoor companies to work with us and people with all abilities
3. Show everybody with a disability that they are just as capable as others Bring Makingtrax into the limelight. We believe that everybody, no matter what ability, should be able to experience the true feeling of freedom through adventure. A disability should be no excuse to hold back. Life is precious and you only have one so live it to the max and push the limits. Makingtrax aims to provide a boundary free environment for everybody. This mission is yet another way of us proving a point: The only limits to this life are the ones you set yourself. Follow us like www.facebook.com/makingtraxmongoliachallenge. Become a supporter and donate to get your password for our interactive website www.traxchallenge.co.nz 

 

New horizons

29th of June, 2014

Well winter is upon us, however we will make the most of the sun while it shines. We are excited to join up with www.smiledial.co.nz An awesome organisation that provides amazing opportunities for families that have a child with special needs and/or disability. Did I here there was a chance of some skydiving ;).Our special young man Jadyn & his Dad are booked in to skydive on the 5th of July, before his night with the Cursaders.In the mean time Makingtrax are working on a much needed Accessible Accomadation site. The accomadation accessibility facilities will be rated on our own research. We will need wheelchair riders around NZ to help us out on this one. So if your keen to help please contact jezza@makingtrax.co.nz

 

Abigails Wish

12th of March, 2014

Abigail came all the way from Philadelphia USA to live her dream, an extreme week in the adventure capital of the world. Makingtrax was delighted to put together this trip of a lifetime. Abigail has tetraplegic cerebral palsy,   unable to communicate verbally and no body control. This incredible young lady proved nothing is impossible.

Our first activity was a helicopter ride to a beautiful glacier in the national park of Mt Cook. After a soak in the beautiful hot pools of Omarama we departed to Queenstown where Abigail and family enjoyed the experience of soaring like an eagle, paragliding off Coronet Peak. With the help of Makingtrax paragliding buggy, a beautiful experience...Next thrill was a jet boat ride up the Shotover River before swinging off the largest cliff jump in the world, the Shotover Canyon swing. Abigail and her father Thomas had the time of their life on the tandem swing. Next on the list, to the famous aerodrome in Wanaka where Ivan Kripper, New Zealand's champion aerobatic pilot took Abbey to the sky where they performed loops, spins and stalls. To finish Abigails incredible adventure on a high we flew to Nelson, where Abigail skydived from 13,000 feet with Abel Tasman skydive. Making this all safe and easy the Makingtrax skydiving harness was used. It was sad saying good byes. Abigail is one of the most amazing beautiful young ladys I have ever had the chance to experience. Her energy is magical. Abigail may not be able to communicate verbally but emotionally she has the soul of an angel. We will stay in contact and look forward to our next adventure...Check out our photos in Our Gallery

 

Featured Athlete

26th of February, 2014

Our Featured Athlete this month is Jadyn Barton, this young man is a little legend. Jadyn has a rare neurodegenerative condition called Ataxia Telangiectasisa , now in his second year as a wheelchair rider . But this 11 year old does not get slowed down by his condition , living a life of excitement and adventure , including his recent expedition to the Mueller Hut in Mt Cook National Park , with the Makingtrax team . Soon Jadyn will be Skydiving 12000 ft and undertaking an extreme weekend in Queenstown . Follow Jadyn's journey www.facebook.com/reachfortheskytoinspire & feel free to support by donation www.givealittle.co.nz/cause/reachfortheskytoinspire 

 

Getting Jadyn into the Mountains

21st of January, 2014

Makingtrax & our awesome team got a magical young man Jadyn to live his dream. Jadyn has a rare genetic condition called Ataxia Talangiectasia. Unable to walk without assistance. With the help of our incredible harness, the team made an 8 hour journey to the Mueller Hut and back in one day. Mueller Hut at 1800 meters in the Sealy Range, the distance of 10km up & back with 1000 meters vertical. Nearly half as high as Aoraki/Mt Cook's summit. The view from the hut is a 360-degree panorama of glaciers, ice cliffs, vertical rock faces and New Zealand's highest peaks. Jadyn has his own charty Jadyn's helping hand www.givealittle.co.nz/org/rhonda241

Check the Photos in our Gallery. This harness is availalbe for hire contact us today

 

 

Skydiving Testimonials

1st of May, 2013

Read Our Skydiving Testimonials           click here

 

" A HUGE thank you to Jezza at Makingtrax and the Skydiving Kiwis team for their outstanding service and willingness to help us wheelchair riders experience the wonder of free fall action. It was one of the craziest and best things I have done and definitely recommend it to other wheelchair riders to have a go. The feeling of freefall was incredible and then floating through the sky was surreal. The skydiving Kiwis team made me feel completely safe and were really informative so I knew what was going to happen at all times. The harness system is really clever, it lifts up your legs so you are in kind of a sitting position and when you come in to land you basically don't touch the ground until you are stopped and sitting on it. I absolutely can't wait to get out there and do it again"                                                                                                                                                                  

Kara Hall, Ashburton

 

"On Saturday the 30th of March I had the opportunity to go skydiving with Makingtrax and Skydiving Kiwis. Many people get this chance as well, but after become a tetraplegic two years ago I definitely did not think it was something I would be able to do, until of course, I was approached by Jezza. He explained he had discovered a safe way for me to be able to experience the amazing feeling of flying! I couldn't resist.

To my delight my jump was even going to be sponsored. How could I say no?

On the morning I was pretty nervous but the Makingtrax and Skydiving Kiwi crew put me at ease and had created a really positive and fun vibe that turned my nerves into excitement. Being able to participate in this awesome activity made me feel "normal" for a bit and do something that I never in a million years thought I'd be able to do in a wheelchair.

I highly recommend this to anyone with a disability. It has certainly opened my eyes and I will definitely be trying other activities with Makingtrax.

Thank you, one of the most amazing thrills I've had in my life."

Cody Everson, Christchurch

 

Paragliding Tandem/Solo

25th of April, 2013

Keeping with the canopy flying experiences, next on our schedule is paragliding. Paragliding is a little more relaxing than our adrenaline filled skydive. Like a bird soaring in the mountains, playing in the thermals.I was recently in Queenstown working with professionals in the industry to put together a paragliding system. Our first idea was to use the same harness system that we use for the skydiving, keeping our legs up. This worked perfectly; however the reason it worked perfectly was we had a number of paragliding instructors helping at takeoff. Looking more to the future into a bigger picture we needed to refine our system. That is exactly what we have done. We now have the availability of our paragliding buggy. View Gallery. On our first initial flights everything was done in tandem with a professional paragliding tandem master. For most people that experience is very sufficient. However we plan to go just that bit further. Gaining solo licences so wheelchair riders can fly solo, an extremely exciting step.Click here to hear of an experience that Fraser Kennedy, an international traveller, experienced with the paragliding buggy. 

 

I am a wheelchair user and first tried paragliding in South Africa in 2004. This was done without the buggy and it required a lot of physical effort by the instructor, but after seeing how the glider was controlled I became convinced this was something I could do. Consequently, I researched disabled paragliding and found a group of instructors and the UK who designed the buggy. The buggy gives disabled people the opportunity to experience the real the thrill of flying with ease. The buggy operates in the same way as an abled bodied paraglide, you take off and land on wheels rather than running with your legs. At takeoff,  two people tilt the buggy and run with it until you and the instructor takeoff. It is amazing sensation to be in the air and catch a thermal and feel the lift, most often than not you get to a higher altitude and takeoff. The flight can be tranquil and calm or you can ask the instructer to perform a series that spirals to lose altitude quickly (my favourite). The landing is smooth as the front of the buggy slides and the carbon axle attached to the wheels absorbs the impact. I have never done solo flights with the buggy,  I am sure this will follow in New Zealand. It is great the buggy and now in New Zealand, it offers different perspective of the magnificent landscape. I highly recommend paragliding and believe the buggy is a real testament to resourcefulness over resources by focusing on how it can be done.

Fraser Kennedy UK

 

Day in the sky

14th of April, 2013

Makingtrax & Skydiving Kiwis were extremely grateful for such an amazing event. Now with the sky opened to wheelchair riders at our Rangitata Drop Zone,we can look back on the last few weeks and the process of opening the skies. During the buildup to our main event we were flabbergasted at the results we had with incredible individuals providing sponsorship to able the wheelchair community to get amongst the clouds and experience the freedom of freefall. Seven jumpers were sponsored. Donations came flooding in from New Zealand and as far as Switzerland. A total of 12 wheelchair riders in the last three weeks have taken to the skies with the help of Makingtrax and Skydiving Kiwis. We hope to see the wheelchair riding community embracing the opportunity. Personalised and tailored to the individual, correct and appropriate equipment. Tandem master's, photographers and pilots fully trained and experienced in dealing with wheelchair riders. Giving an experience of a lifetime. Contact us and come fly in the clouds

 

 

 

 

Build up to Day in the Sky

25th of February, 2013

The first sport I could ever think of being able to do after my accident was skydive. Having worked in the Swiss Alp's I was lucky enough to be surrounded by extreme heads in all sports including the skydive, base jumping community. I always knew that these guys were a little crazy but never have imagined doing skydiving myself, being a water-based person. So the moment that I lost control of my body the easiest gravity sport in the world is to fall.

So with the making of our company it was obvious that I needed to get amongst the skydiving community. To find the perfect place, people and company for makingtrax to join up with and make it work. My number one goal was to find that perfect company. I investigated many different companies in New Zealand.The sad thing is a lot of companies are all about how many people they can drop in a day, losing the personal New Zealand touch. But then out of the blue I heard about a little New Zealand company: Skydiving Kiwis.

I set up a meeting with the company director Lee and his beautiful girlfriend Sophie. I remember it was going to be a quick meeting finding out if this company was worth putting something together. My idea was to spend about an hour just asking questions of finding out about the business. Three hours later Lee was asking if I needed help to get back into my vehicle. What a meeting, a couple of awesome people. You know when you meet somebody and it feels like you have known them your whole life; that's how I sort of felt after I met Lee.

After our initial meeting a big list of ideas was brought forward of ways that we can get wheelchair riders up into the sky and throw them back down to earth safely. In reality it was up to me to head down to Skydiving Kiwis at Rangatata Island and figure it out for myself. I contacted my boys back in Switzerland and asked them if they had taken wheelchair riders skydiving and if so how. The boys had different ideas. The first idea was to duct tape the jumpers legs to the passengers...that idea didn't go down too well. The next idea was a little bit smarter. Tieing the legs together and having a rope system to pull the legs up on landing. This idea sounded a little more safer. But after thinking about it there was no way that I would be able to pull my legs up being a C5 tetraplegic. I just do not have the strength. So my next idea was to sort out a system so Lee could pull down the rope and lock it off so my legs would be safely up in the air for the landing.

The main things I was very worried about was firstly any scratches on my bum during landing, pressure areas and, the worst case scenario, the idea that my legs could not get pulled up in the landing. This would cause major troubles as you can imagine. The last idea was my legs staying together so it would be easy for my instructor to fly with me. With all of these thoughts going through my mind I decided there is only one way to find out.

So I was off to the drop zone to find out how it was going to come together. I arrived down at the aerodrome on Rangatata Island. What a place, old school microlights, museum, biplanes, aerobatic planes and the coolest grass airstrip quality New Zealand. First thing was to meet up with Skydiving Kiwis team. I spent the afternoon watching people jumping out of a perfectly good plane. Sitting back in this beautiful environment, talking to some amazing individuals, getting ready to put together my contraction. I found out a little more about Skydiving Kiwis,  especially when Lee was away from the scene. I could ask a little bit more information off the crew and look how they run the company.  I have to say is I was extremely impressed.

It works out that Lee is one of New Zealand's best aerobatic flyers, also an amazing ground swooper. If you have not heard of swooping I think you should check it out, impressive. It means swooping the ground, (obviously without a passenger) seeing how fast and far you can fly inchs off the ground 80 to 90 km an hour. Lee has done over 5000 jumps in his career as a tandem master. At the age of 31 is very experienced, also the youngest drop zone owner in New Zealand. Having jumped all over the world Lee has now come back to New Zealand to open up his drop zone on Rangitata island. Just the second year that the company has been in operation.

Time to try our new system, I have to say that I was nice and relaxed. I had full trust in the team, everybody took fantastic care of me. The first system we used was towels to stop any pressure areas and then good old duct tape to tie it all together. A bit of rope that went up in through the harness of the tandem shoulder straps. Good to rock'n roll. I could explain the whole emotion and experience but I will leave that up to you when you come and give it a go. All I can say is that is an amazing feeling of freedom and exhilaration. In fact the first time I jumped there was so much going on that it was hard to take on the big picture. Luckily enough for me our system worked without an issue. When you come and for landing as long as your feet are up you don't even slide on your bum; all the weight goes on your instructor.

After our first trial a lot of time and planning went into our now bomber proof harness system. Take a look at the photos you will see the system we are using today www.facebook.com/makingtrax.co.nz . All I can say is after five jumps so far and many more to come I do not have a worry in the world. I can just sit back and enjoy. In fact the more I do, the more I have become addicted. Everything slows down, so many different emotions, incredible experience. Now I know why people jump from perfectly good planes.

So now I am putting together our first event "The Day in the Sky". The 16 &17 of March we will bring together wheelchair riders to experience the amazing freedom of skydiving. Come enjoy what Makingtrax & Skydiving Kiwis have put together. Camping at the drop zone, flying, falling, BBQ and beers. Go with gravity.

 

© Making Trax 2016 - Taking Wheelchair Travel to the Next Level