Buffalo and iLevel® Technology

Traveling in wonderful Wyoming in my Quantum® power wheelchair with iLevel® is always an adventure. You never know what photo opportunities may present themselves. Just make sure your subject is not moving.

Last week, I traveled to Jackson, also known as Jackson Hole, Wyoming.  The magnificent Teton Mountains can be seen from the distance.  Jackson is known for many things, as it is the gateway to Yellowstone National Park. Tourists and people travel from all over the country and across the globe to catch a glimpse of the Wyoming beauty that awaits them.

Madonna elevates her power wheelchair when sitting at the bar

I grew up not far from Jackson, in a small town in Wyoming.  So, Jackson is considered part of my home surroundings to me. I spent much of my time in Jackson with my college friends who grew up in the area. Last week, we went to see some of my friends who were vacationing in Yellowstone.  I love the drive through the mountains and valleys heading to Jackson. It is always such a treasure to behold, especially in the springtime.  You can smell the air. It’s so crisp! Plus, the wildflowers line the sides of the road as you drive.

Staying in Wheelchair Accessible Pinedale

When it comes to places to stay, Jackson is a bit pricey for hotels, so we stayed in Pinedale. Pinedale is around 70 miles away from Jackson and it’s a sleepy little town. Although it doesn’t look accessible, there are many accessible places where you can travel in a power wheelchair. 

The hotel where we stayed had an interesting feature that is common to this part of Wyoming. Our hotel had a bison (or buffalo as most people know them) head on the wall. I had to take a picture to see how tall my iLevel Power Wheelchair was while sitting next to this beast. Never let their large appearance fool you. If you see buffalo in the wild, they’re not like cows out in the pasture. They are amazingly fast and protect their young. They should never be approached. I’m happy that the picture I took with this particular buffalo was on the wall and it was only his head and not the rest of him.

Madonna poses in front of a buffalo with her Edge 3 Power Wheelchair at iLevel

Understanding Bison Behavior

If you are traveling to Wyoming and encounter a buffalo or bison, there are few things you should know. First, they’re huge and very fast. Bison are actually the largest mammal in North America. A male bison is called a bull and weighs up to 2,000 pounds. They can stand 6 feet tall. Female bison are called cows and weigh up to 1,000 pounds and reach a height of 4-5 feet.  Now, the babies are nicknamed “red dogs” because bison calves tend to be an orange-reddish color. Their mamas are very protective of them.

You never want to underestimate bison. I have actually seen people who have. So here is an interesting fact: their tail will tell you what they are thinking. If you see that tail straight up, they may charge you. They are very unpredictable, so just remember to love them from a distance.

Bison are beloved creatures to those of us who live in Wyoming. Our state flag’s crest has a bison on it. The Wyoming state flag was adopted by the fourteenth legislature on January 31, 1917, and on the Great Seal of Wyoming is the heart of the flag. Pictured there are the bison or who once the roamed the plains of many states.

Wyoming is such a beautiful state. It may seem inaccessible yet there are many wonderful and accessible places to visit. I am finding those treasure places where iLevel technologu and the wild west meet.

About Madonna Long: Madonna works as a disability advocate to educate policymakers and congressional leaders on disability issues. She uses an Edge 3 Power Wheelchair for mobility. She is a mother to four children and lives life on her terms, despite a spinal cord injury. Click here to learn more about Madonna.

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