<![CDATA[ACCESSIBLEADVENTURES.NET - Blog]]>Sun, 12 May 2024 07:30:43 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Is Meow Wolf inclusive to wheelchair users?]]>Sat, 02 Mar 2024 21:27:52 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/is-meow-wolf-inclusive-to-wheelchair-users
     ​Travel to another universe and roll through the galaxies. Meow Wolf Convergence Station in Denver Colorado did a beautiful job providing accessibility throughout their campus. This was originally an activity we thought wouldn’t be feasible for our son Robbie because of his need for accessibility.
     ​When you arrive at Convergence Station there is a security tent where you check in. You may hear a loudspeaker announcing no strollers or large backpacks are allowed. Always remember if your child has a disability their stroller is considered a mobility device and counted as a wheelchair! As for bags, if you require a medical bag, you can bring it with you. Security will check the bag and give you a bright colored tag that says, “approved item”. 
     If you are traveling through space with a small child or baby, I recommend using a child carrier so you can explore hands free. You can also check a bag inside for a small fee or drop your coat for free!
    Speaking of coat check, this is where you go to check out FREE sensory items! You will exchange a photo ID for a bag you can fill with sunglasses, noise cancelling headphones (our baby loved these), and fidget toys. They also offer a sensory guide for the campus which I have provided pictures of below so you can prepare!
     Don’t be afraid to get lost inside! Whether you walk or roll everyone gets a little turned around, it’s part of the fun! Each floor can be accessed by elevator. I recommend starting at the main one-way elevator to the left when you are standing in the lobby. There are employees that are happy to answer questions!
     If someone in your party has a condition sensitive to strobe lights, pay attention to the signage as you choose which rooms you enter. There are also quiet rooms scattered throughout the exhibit for sensory breaks and so many interactive pieces.
​     About halfway through our time here our family was ready for a break, and we needed to change our son. If you are also in need of a private space for any reason, go to the front desk and ask to use the guest services lounge. This room has a quiet sitting area with chairs and a couch that can be used for nursing mothers, and a full-size fixed height changing table being a privacy shield! This room meant the world to our family. We happened to visit on a cold snowy day and because of this space we didn’t have to leave early to change our son in the back of our vehicle exposed to the weather.
     Meow Wolf was truly such an inclusive experience. We were able to dive into this unique atmosphere feeling fully supported and welcomed. It isn’t something we find often so when we do it’s worth celebrating and sharing! Here is a link for tickets. ​https://meow.wf/3SFolLK
<![CDATA[Visiting Bryce Canyon Country with a Wheelchair]]>Thu, 04 Jan 2024 00:49:46 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/visiting-bryce-canyon-country-with-a-wheelchairAccessibility in Bryce Canyon National Park
​    Did you know you can walk or roll to see hoodoos that are estimated to be 60 million years old? That’s right Bryce Canyon is known for its otherworldly hoodoos and has fully accessible trails and viewpoints so everyone can take in the sights.

     My first step when planning any national park trip is to go to the park’s website. Some are more helpful than others and Bryce Canyon National Park is an example of a job well done. They list trails, viewpoints and even created a video! You can also stop at the visitor center and talk with a ranger. I Find when I explain our limitations and goals, we get better recommendations.

     You have the option to drive into the park and utilize handicap parking spaces or take the wheelchair accessible shuttle. I would make that decision depending on the time of year you visit and how busy the park is! The shuttle is free and will pick you up and drop you off at your campground or hotel if you choose one of the recommendations below.

     If you are planning a national park trip and have a disability, check out the Access Pass. It is a free lifetime pass to national parks and so much more! You can apply in person or online and have it mailed to you for $10 to avoid the delay the day of entry to a park. 

Where to stay in Bryce Canyon Country

​     We stayed at Ruby’s Inn RV Park and Campground, and it was the perfect place to stay! They have accessible shower areas with chairs you can transfer into and restrooms. The sites were all very clean and level. If you have been camping you will know how important that is for wheelchair users and caregivers if you are doing transfers. I once fell in a pothole while carrying Robbie to our camper because a site was so unlevel. The sites are wide and flat at this park, which is so much safer.

     We visited in October just after the campground closed their pool for the season. If you stay during this time you can go to their hotel next door Best Western Plus- Ruby’s Inn and get a guest key to access the indoor pool and hot tub! There were lifts and very large shower areas here as well! It was a great break for our son who loves water to burn some energy before bedtime.

Favorite inclusive activities in the area

     Riding in a 6-seater OHV with Ruby’s Inn ATV Tours may have been the most fun adventure our family has been on yet! We did an hour-long guided tour. You first drive to the rim of the canyon overlooking hoodoos then get to do some fun trails. The unique thing about this experience was they were so willing to adapt our adventure for our children to be included safely. We used a 5 pt harness for our son and a car seat for our daughter who was 11 months old at the time. This was the perfect quick adventure! The staff here was particularly wonderful. When we pulled back in, they instructed us to drive our OHV directly to our truck so transferring our son would be easier. So often I feel like the smallest details make the largest impact.  Our trip was full of smiles and giggles from our entire family.

     Something you don’t want to miss is the dinner show at Ebenezer’s Barn and Grill. If you like country music and good food this is a must-do experience. When we purchased our tickets, we made sure to let them know our son was in a wheelchair and our daughter used a highchair. This ensured we got the best seating option for our family. The Bryce Canyon Wranglers were such a joy to meet. One of them came over without hesitation to make sure if we needed any help getting through the line to get dinner, we got it! We ordered steak dinners, and our daughter had an adult chicken meal. Dinner shows aren’t usually known for great dining, and the quality of food was a pleasant surprise for us. We sang along to our favorite songs during the show and got up to dance with our kids. Our son is nonverbal but he had the biggest smile and was dancing flapping his hands to the music. We could see how much he loved this.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask me or their local tourism board. Bryce Canyon Country sponsored this trip and experiences for our family to share!
<![CDATA[Glenwood Springs, Colorado-Inclusive and accessible activities]]>Sat, 21 Oct 2023 01:42:56 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/glenwood-springs-colorado-inclusive-and-accessible-activities​One town with two accessible hot springs? You read that right. So how do you choose? In this blog I am going to highlight our favorite activities in Glenwood Springs and the difference between the two hot springs.

Iron Mountain Hot Springs

Picture yourself with a frozen drink, soaking in the warm water and no worries about cooking dinner. This hot spring tends to have less of a crowd and attract the locals. The main family pool is accessible with a ramp and free use of a water wheelchair. The Sopris Café has options of pizza, charcutier boards, desserts and more! There are also some great options with and without alcohol. Our daughter enjoyed floating around with a smoothie! My recommendation is to end your day here. We watched the sunset, ordered pizza for dinner, and stayed until closing. You will find a family/ADA friendly changing space. There is a fold down shower chair and baby changing station in this room but no full-size changing table. There are 19 pools on the kid friendly side and 32 total if you are 21+. The only accessible pool is the main family pool which stays about 90 degrees. You can roll to the side of two smaller hot tubs listed on the map above. This hot spring also does 3-hour wristbands which helps keep down the crowds. Click here for more information.

Glenwood Hot Springs Pool

A completely different vibe at Glenwood Hot Springs Pool where you will find an entire accessible kid’s zone. The Sopris Splash Zone is a kid’s wonderland with padded ground safe for crawling or knee walking like my son. There is a splash pad, baby pool area, slides, and a lift into the kid’s pool! Something I loved about this location was there are no time limits and no extra fees for slides etc. You can come in the morning, stamp your hand on the way out and come back after a break or lunch. Now let’s talk size. This pool does get busier, but it is so large you aren’t crowded in the water at all.  The main pool is 405 feet long and 100 feet wide. In this pool you will find lap lanes, a diving board and floats are allowed. It is kept at about 90 degrees making it perfect for families. The therapy pool is 100 feet long and kept at 104 degrees. It features therapeutic water jets for a nice massage. There are 3 lifts on the property, one into each pool and a ramp into the therapy pool. There is also a snack bar with some basic options that are kid friendly. Click here for more information.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park

​If you are looking for the best wheelchair accessible views in Glenwood, I suggest taking the Gondola ride up to Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park. We had lunch at the Lookout grille which is also roll friendly. There were a few ride areas we were able to access and take turns with our daughter doing the mountain coaster and flyer ride. The entire adventure park is not wheelchair accessible as it is built climbing uphill on the side of a mountain.  There is a wheelchair lift located inside the gift shop that will take you to the top of the building and avoid the stairs. Just ask a gift shop employee and when you get to the top knock on the door. You actually roll through their office, but they are happy to help, and the view is amazing!

Find the Glenwood Wings

​Stop by the visitor center and grab a FREE map for a hunt to find the Glenwood Wings. This was a fun activity for the whole family. I loved that the wings are at all different heights so wheelchair users or small children can easily pose for photos. The visitor center is also a great place to stop and ask questions. Whether you are looking for trail maps or local experiences they can help guide you.

Hike or Bike 

​We used Glenwood Adventure Company for our bike rentals. They had an e-assist bike that was able to tow our Wike trailer. They do have a few different bike trailer options for children that you can use with the e-assist which is very helpful on trails with an incline. We chose to bike the Glenwood Canyon Trail and it was beautiful.  Either the Glenwood Canyon Recreation Path or the Rio Grande Trail are both paved and accessible to hike or bike. The employee at this bike shop was eager to assist us in any way possible and said they have taken kids with disabilities on other adventures like rafting as well. Hopefully we will make it back to try some of their other options!

Where we stayed

​We stayed at the Hampton Inn Glenwood Springs. There are accessible rooms, it is dog friendly and there is an indoor pool. Most importantly its location is right next to the Gondola and Iron Mountain Hot Springs. We also stayed at Ami’s Acres campground. There are steps to reach the office, but their staff is happy to greet you at your vehicle if needed for check-in. Call the office on arrival to let them know you are there. Our site wasn’t very wide so if you need to use your wheelchair at your RV site I would recommend calling ahead and making sure your site will be wide enough. 

Equipment we brought with us

Safety Sleeper by Abrahms- Robbie sleeps in this when we stay away from home outside of his camper.
Adaptive Life vest-Used at both hot springs and the hotel pool, Robbie uses the LJ-A model.
Wike Special needs bike trailer- Used with a rental e-bike
We had an amazing time in Glenwood Springs and can't wait to help you plan more Accessible Adventures!
<![CDATA[Visiting Ouray as a Wheelchair User]]>Sat, 23 Sep 2023 22:34:49 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/visiting-ouray-as-a-wheelchair-user​When you think about mountain towns and outdoor recreation, accessibility isn’t likely at the forefront of your mind. A roll in hot spring, accessible waterfall and private jeep tour might just change your mind about visiting Ouray with a wheelchair. 

Ouray Hot Springs

Ouray Hot Springs offered free use of 2 water wheelchairs and has ramps into the Shallow Pool 82° – 92°, the Hot Pool 92° – 100° and the Activity Pool 78° – 82°. There is also a lift into the Lap Pool 78° – 82°. Another great feature was the depth of water. The water wheelchair rolled right into the pool. You could then either transfer out like Robbie or continue to wheel across the whole pool staying in the chair! When we arrived, I was pleased to find a large wheelchair friendly changing space. We used a bench in that area to change Robbie. There was also a shower chair and accessible stall with detachable shower head. Don’t forget to pack towels (or rent them for $10), sunscreen, an adaptive life vest, and swim diapers if needed!

Million Dollar Highway

​The best thing about scenic drives is they are accessible to everyone! The infamous Million Dollar Highway stretches 25-miles of highway from Ouray to Silverton. Drive US 550 heading north to experience this scenic and treacherous drive. 


Bear Creek Falls is the only wheelchair accessible waterfall. Drive north from Ouray on highway 550 for this roadside attraction. The roll friendly viewing platform is located on the Million Dollar Highway!
While not accessible Box Canyon Falls is a 500 ft, mostly level, walk out and back. We find destinations like this are perfect for using Robbie’s Kinderpack! (15% off affiliate code- accessamb) We strapped both him and our baby into their carriers and went to explore. Right as you enter there are many wild birds and chipmunks. It’s a great place to sit and watch them up close in nature! The 500ft walk does take you down some steps (these can be avoided by turning right just past the visitor center). You go through the canyon on a metal grate hugging the canyon wall right up until you are almost underneath the 285-foot waterfall. It gets louder the closer you get to the falls. Prepare with noise cancelling headphones if loud noises are a trigger for anyone in your group. 

​Private Jeep Tour

​Our family did a private guided 4x4 tour with Alpine Scenic Jeep Tours. We had never experienced this level of off roading. Robbie was able to use his special needs car seat in the jeep! Before deciding if this is right for you, make sure you are comfortable with bouncing around while your jeep climbs over rocks, drives through creeks and close to the cliffs edge. We talked to our guide about our comfort level and desired views. He came up with our plan for the day and we were off! We experienced every season of weather in our 4 hours, and I say this to make sure you are prepared. Pack extra layers of clothes, gloves, hats etc. We drove up Immogene Pass and not 5 minutes after parking we saw the snow start moving in. That’s right, it snowed in summer! Our driver gave us blankets for our legs that were water resistant and put the clear cover top over the back seats. We drove back down and by the time we reached the bottom the snow had turned to rain. The weather passed in less than 10 minutes, and we decided to try out Yankee Boy Basin. Both drives were stunning and very different! Imogene Pass we were driving the cliffs edge and Yankee Boy we were climbing over rocks. This was one of the best adventures our family has been on yet. We felt safe having a driver that had the level of experience ours did. For that reason, I highly recommend Alpine Scenic Jeep Tours!

Where to eat

​The Gold Belt Bar and Grill has great outdoor seating and heaters if it’s chilly. You can find parking at an accessible spot in front of the entrance. You do have to wheel over a small bump up to get onto the patio. They have pizza, sandwiches, and wings making this a great option for everyone. Our daughter loved it so much we got her a burger to go on day 2 while we tried the  Thai Chili Restaurant  next-door. They have a truly roll friendly entrance and serve boba tea! We ordered drunken noodles and shrimp tempura. It was delicious!

Day trip for adative sports

Ridgway State park– (20 min away)
  • Reserve a Track Chair at no cost.
  • Mobi Mat, Floating beach wheelchair, and Sol Paddle board you can strap a wheelchair to are all available at the swim beach at no cost for those with disabilities.
  • Accessible fishing with a no barrier fishing pier. Fishing poles and tackle box can be rented free of charge from the visitor center. Bait is also available to purchase for $5.
If you are a disabled Colorado resident, you may qualify for  Columbine Lifetime Fishing license and the Columbine Parks Pass which costs only $14 per year for access to all state parks.
We were blown away by not only the inclusive activities we found in Ouray but the people. We had strangers offer to jump in and help us if our hands looked full. Locals took time out of their day to circle and cross things off a town map. Because of them we knew accessible options for lunch. It isn’t often you travel somewhere new, and the locals make it feel like home!

Kristy Cook- Accessible Adventures

Leave a comment if this was helpful!

<![CDATA[Breckenridge, Colorado - Accessible Adventures for the whole family]]>Wed, 29 Mar 2023 23:38:25 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/breckenridge-colorado-accessible-adventures-for-the-whole-familyWe visited Breckenridge, Colorado with a family group of 3 generations. I never imagined a mountain town being so inclusive.  My son Robbie uses a wheelchair and has developmental delays. He is 8-years-old but cognitively more like an 8-month-old infant. This guide will explain how each activity was accessible and inclusive for our entire family.

Accessible outdoor activities:

Golden Horseshoe Sleigh Rides made no hesitation in helping us in any way they could to make our experience accessible and fun for the whole family. We pushed Robbie’s wheelchair to the warming tent and were given the option to go around the tent to the side with no steps. Remember this is a winter outdoor activity. Our son’s Convaid Rodeo handles well in the packed down snow and for more difficult to manage areas we pull him backwards on the two larger wheels. The warming tent offered delicious hot cocoa that is included and unlimited with the cost of your ticket. It was delicious and a great way to warm up before the main event. They also had a dairy free option of hot cider, talk about inclusion! Each group has time to meet and pet the horses. Our daughter takes riding lessons, and these gentle giants were the highlight of her trip. We pushed Robbie’s wheelchair right up to the side of the sleigh and they brought us a step stool to help with transferring him into the front row. The ride itself was so beautiful. Short enough that none of the kids got antsy but long enough to truly enjoy the scenery and take in the full experience. 
Carter Park is a FREE sledding hill right in town. Our rental was walking distance and we brought Robbie’s adaptive sled with us. He uses a Kettler Snow Comfort Bob Sled and it is adapted with a FireFly GoTo seat for additional support. We started Robbie in his wheelchair and pushed both his chair and his bobsled to the base of the hill before transferring him. You do have to push to the top of the sledding hill here but it was doable with his adaptive sled. This sled has a footbrake which was great for slowing them down and keeping it in control with precious cargo. The views of the mountains from Carter Park are nothing short of spectacular. 
Isak Heartstone is a 15ft tall wooden troll sculpture that is an absolute must see while in Breckenridge. In the summer, this is what our family would consider wheelchair friendly. You can find more detailed accessibility information for the trail here. Due to the fresh fallen snow we chose to carry our son in his child sized Kinderpack. The walk took less than 5 minutes each way and pictures do not do this sculpture justice. It is something you must experience in person. The trailhead can be found in the southeast corner of the Stephen C. West Ice Arena parking lot, which is also a Breck Free Ride bus stop. All Breck Free Ride buses are handicapped accessible, and they also offer complementary para-transit services through Mountain Mobility, in addition to the fixed routes. From the parking lot, follow the troll signs and always remember to leave no trace.

Staying warm indoors:

​It was nice to have options that got us out of the winter weather. There are two FREE museums in town, and they are an easy walking distance apart. First, we visited the Barney Ford House Museum. I want to start by highlighting the accessible parking located behind the building. There are only a few spots, and the wheelchair accessible entrance is a short path from that parking lot, not the front of the building. Barney Ford’s story is incredibly moving. If you have never heard of him this short tour is well worth the 30 minutes we spent here. You can do a self-guided tour or talk to the historian on site about his remarkable life. Just a 2-minute walk or roll away is the Breckenridge Welcome Center. This 4,000 sq ft multilevel museum is a perfect place to start your trip. It is fully accessible with elevators and has interactive maps of the city. If you are looking for information on shopping, dining, and local activities, this is your one stop shop!
The Breckenridge Recreation Center was the highlight of Robbie’s trip. Water is healing for him in ways that are hard to put into words. This location made an afternoon of water play incredibly inclusive for Robbie and easy for us as caregivers. To start there were accessible changing rooms big enough for Robbie’s wheelchair and both parents. We brought the pool wheelchair right to the changing room and transferred him to it as soon as he was in his swimsuit. We were able to push him from the changing room all the way into the slide pool which had an accessible ramp and was nice and heated! Robbie uses a LJ-A adaptive life vest so once he was transferred into the pool, he was able to float around freely. It was our 3-month-old baby’s first time in a pool and the warm water was perfect for her. The adults in our group loved taking turns in the hot tub and soaking our cares away. Our older kids moved over to the lap pool which has a neat rock-climbing wall coming out of the pool. Robbie wanted to follow them, so we pushed him using the pool wheelchair to the lift and transitioned him into the lap pool. I can’t tell you how much accessible options like this save our backs as caregivers.  The recreation center is a perfect addition to your trip no matter the season.
We had an opportunity to meet the team at the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center and feel their passion for inclusion in the outdoors firsthand. Who are they? The BOEC is a non-profit organization that has a focus on including those with disabilities in the outdoors sine 1976. Stay tuned for when we return this summer to test out adaptive sports with Robbie! For now, I will leave you with a list of adapted activities they offer. In the winter, they host adaptive ski and snowboard programs. In the summer, they have an adaptive ropes course, biking, rafting, kayaking, hiking, and camping. Basically, if you have a passion to try something and there is a way, they can help make it happen they will.   Their staff supports our community with so much love and enthusiasm.

​Our family travels all over the United States and we were truly shocked to find the most inclusive location we have been to so far was right in our “back yard”. While Breckenridge is well known for its beautiful scenery, our family was fortunate enough to see the true heart and inclusion that takes place here.

<![CDATA[How to get FREE diapers through Medicaid]]>Mon, 15 Aug 2022 06:36:01 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/how-to-get-free-diapers-through-medicaid
Click here to see if your child qualifies!
     As a traveling family with a Disabled child, we have a lot to juggle to make our unique lifestyle work. Accessible road trips take time to plan and require efficient scheduling and timing. Things we must manage before even leaving our house are scheduling trips around medication refills and supply deliveries. For us that means we need a company that is on time every time and takes the leg work on themselves.
     Aeroflow Urology has checked all those boxes and more. Many children with special needs often experience delayed potty training, potty training regression or incontinence (bladder and/or bowel leakage). Our son Robbie is in diapers/ pullups 24 hours a day and doesn’t have the cognitive awareness to use the restroom. For years we purchased incontinence supplies ourselves, that meant spending over $300 monthly and hunting down his size (which most stores didn’t carry).
      Aeroflow Urology helps parents across the country including myself get their child’s diapers and pull-ups at no cost through their Medicaid plan. What’s even better is they do ALL of the work. Between being my son’s caregiver and planning our adventures I keep a full schedule.
     They help to navigate the process from start to finish - from filing the insurance claim to getting necessary documentation from your healthcare provider. The whole process is straightforward, all you have to do is fill out the quick form, and Aeroflow Urology will take care of the rest!
     All states require that a child be over the age of 3, some require ages 4 or 5. Coverage depends on specific state Medicaid guidelines and benefits. If you are approved, your products will be mailed to you on a monthly basis, straight to your door and from my experience always on time.
     One of the best parts is when you first get started, they will send you product samples to test with your child, this ensures the absolute best fit and comfort.  We tried about 6 different products and realized we liked both the Sleepover Pullups and Tena XS Briefs that are more like diapers. Aeroflow even lets us split up our order monthly to provide both so Robbie is always comfortable whether he is sleeping or crawling all over the house!
​To see if your child is eligible for FREE supplies click the link below!
Click Here to Apply for FREE diapers!
<![CDATA[Visiting Moab Utah with a wheelchair]]>Thu, 02 Jun 2022 04:16:52 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/visiting-moab-utah-with-a-wheelchair​Moab is the home to three amazing parks with so much to see from a wheelchair! We spent two and a half days here and hit all of these parks and the Mill Canyon Dinosaur Trail which if you have kids is a great stop! A wheelchair friendly trail circles the park with life size dinosaur replicas and there is a little playground and a swing that Robbie would have loved if he wasn’t napping.
iArches National Park
We spent about half a day at Arches National Park and did the following stops. Balanced Rock has a flat paved trail that is short and perfect for all abilities! There are some stairs at the top if you wanted to get closer but it absolutely isn’t necessary. Park Avenue Viewpoint has a Short paved path to viewpoint and is absolutely worth the stop! Panorama Point has great wide view and is easily accessed. Double Arch Trail is a flat hard packed dirt trail to the base of a beautiful double arch (hence the name) this was our favorite! Delicate Arch Viewpoint is right next to the parking lot and there is a view in the distance of the infamous Delicate Arch. I like to print a list like this before I enter a park then bring a marker and circle all of the trails I have found that we can do. This way you know what is coming next and if it worth a stop based on your needs.
 Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands National Park is unbelievably underrated. I mean that in the best way. Do not skip this one; it is like a mini Grand Canyon! The Island in the Sky district is the most accessible and has many pull overs with scenic overlooks that are a short walk from ADA parking. One trail that we loved was Mesa Arch, this trail is not wheelchair friendly but at only .5 miles it was short enough to carry Robbie in his Kinderpack! We spent one full day in this district and then driving Shafer Trail to Potash Road. This trail is has sheer cliff drop offs and spectacular views. A few warnings, we did it in our Tundra but don’t recommend vehicles that big because we took up most of the road and the switchbacks were not fun in a big truck. 4X4 wasn’t absolutely necessary but you definitely need high clearance. We saw a lot of jeep rentals taking this path so that may be an option. Personally we love scenic drives because they are accessible to anyone in your vehicle! I am attaching two YouTube videos below, one highlights Canyonlands and all of our photos of the trails I mentioned above and the other is strictly the scenic drive down Shafer trail.
​Dead Horse State Park
We did this the day we got to Moab, it only took a few hours and we made it right before sunset. The views overlook the trail I mentioned that starts in Canyonlands and there is a wonderful wheelchair accessible sidewalk behind the visitor center.
​I truly hope this helps you plan your accessible trip to Moab Utah, please leave a comment if you have any questions or if you plan to visit!

Kristy Cook

Just a medically complex Mom trying to show my family the world and help you do the same.

<![CDATA[Wheelchair friendly things to do near Flagstaff Arizona]]>Thu, 12 May 2022 01:47:59 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/wheelchair-friendly-things-to-do-near-flagstaff-arizona​We spent a week in Williams Arizona it was our family’s favorite trip so far! If you haven’t already you absolutely must see the Grand Canyon. It is one of the most wheelchair friendly National Parks we have been to. One full day is sufficient here if you are hitting all of the roadside stops and walking the wheelchair friendly paths along the rim.
​We stayed at Raptor Ranch and if you are looking for some Flinstone nostalgia this is the place for you! Our 9 year old daughter loved running in and out of the different houses and going down their big dinosaur slide. They also have a great show and fly the Raptors and feed them, very educational for a homeschool family. 
​Another family friendly spot you cannot miss is Bearizona. This isn’t just any zoo, you drive through exhibits and bears, wolves, bison etc walk right next to your vehicle. This feature also made it perfectly accessible for anyone who can ride in a vehicle!
This might have been the highlight of our trip until we stumbled upon The Grand Canyon Deer Farm. Our daughter is still begging to go back. More deer than you can count will follow you around to eat from a cup of food in your hands. You can pet them and honestly they are a riot along with the other animals they house. We are a homeschool family so hands on experiences, zoos etc are wonderful but we have a special spot in our hearts for National Monuments. 
​We made a day of visiting Tuzigoot National Monument and Montezuma Castle National Monument. If you are in the area and like history these are great places to see, Montezuma Castle is completely wheelchair and pet friendly. It’s not a lot of walking and we learned so much about ancient cliff dwelling life in about an hour. Tuzigoot is visually even more impressive, you can walk on sidewalks up to the ruins. It is a bit steep but we did just fine pushing our son’s wheelchair here as well. You can really immerse yourself in the history and for us the homeschool experience couldn’t be beat.
​We spent the next two days seeing Walnut Canyon National Monument, again great history here, and then we knocked a bucket list item off. In case you didn’t know Sunset Crater National Monument is the home of a volcano! Seeing the volcanic rock and fields was truly an experience and a great lesson for the road! Down the same road is Wupatki National Monument which is more ancient ruins, more history and has a great wheelchair friendly viewing trail. Our week in this area of Arizona truly couldn’t be beat and I hope more travelers discover these gems!

Here is a map of the area with everything we did!

<![CDATA[How to Plan RV trips with a wheelchair]]>Thu, 24 Feb 2022 05:34:00 GMThttp://accessibleadventures.net/blog/how-to-travel-with-a-wheelchair
​     When we began traveling with our disabled son that uses a wheelchair for mobility we realized quickly it would entail more planning. I am going to walk through my process on planning trips. We tend to plan a lot of our road trips around seeing National Parks. Most of these parks have accessible parking, scenic drives, boardwalks or pullovers with amazing viewpoints. When looking for information on what to do at these National Parks the first thing you want to explore is each National Park's website. There will be an option for Accessibility that will outline each visitor center, restroom, pull over and fully accessible trail. I begin here making a list of things that look interesting that are 100% wheelchair friendly. I typically have a word doc and copy and paste the information from their website into the document so I can print it and have a physical copy in my folder for that trip. Next I head to YOU TUBE! You could start by searching that park and the word "wheelchair" or "accessible" but by this point I know the areas that fit the ADA guidelines because of step one. I’m looking for things that are stroller friendly, for instance typing in “Stroller friendly things to do in Rocky Mountain National Park”. Here is why; accessibility is a broad spectrum so even if a park has a paved sidewalk all the way up to a monument if the incline is too steep etc. it won’t make the initial list you find on their website. You know your abilities and further research may open more options for you!
     A good example of this is Tuzigoot National Monument (pictured above). There are sidewalks throughout the monuments base but there is a steep enough incline that there are warnings for wheelchair users for good reason. For us anything that is level enough ground to push a stroller even with an incline I am adding to my word doc list and noting the condition that made it not make the initial cut. Pictured below is Mesa Arch at Canyonlands National park.
​     All Trails is another great site to look at to find short but epic hikes. You can also use this app/ website to check recent comments and for trail conditions. Unexpected ice on trails can really ruin a well-planned day. We will back carry our son if a hike is less than 2 miles round trip, doesn’t have a ton of stairs or cliff drop offs etc. A great example of this is Mesa Arch in Canyonlands National Park.  The hike to Mesa Arch is .5 mile and not extremely rugged, we saw hikers of all abilities going all different speeds on this trail. 
      I personally like to map out any location we are staying in and the places of interest close in proximity. This helps me visually so when we are driving around I know what options we have friendly to our needs. This example is of everything we did while staying in Williams, AZ south of the Grand Canyon. Some trips I color code the maps like this one so as I am flipping through my folder I can easily locate each destination and any notes I may have made. It can be hard to gauge how long you will need in each area, if you have a map handy you can determine what other things are close by IF you have time! You can also do this by starring locations in Google Maps but I like to have a printed out map and accessibility info just in case we are out of range or I break/lose my phone.

​     The travel community and full time RV families on social media are also amazing at posting family friendly places to see and answering questions. Do not be afraid to reach out to me or any traveler you find on social media that has posted in the location you want to travel to! This is how we get some of the best travel plans, word of mouth. If you aren’t already I invite you to follow us on instagram at @accessible.adventures as we geo tag wheelchair friendly locations we visit. If you have any questions or your own great tips on trip planning I would love to hear them in the comments!