Fall in the Ozarks

Cherrie in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

After enjoying a yummy BBQ breakfast in Kansas City, we hit the road and headed south toward Arkansas¬† — Northwestern Arkansas, to be specific.

Since we really don’t get the fall colors at home, we thought it would be nice to get a taste of them in the Ozarks. And we weren’t disappointed, as the leafs were just starting to change, and Cherrie really enjoyed the ride. We even had time to stop along the way and explore a bit. Cherrie had a fun time playing in the leafs, and learning about the different kinds of trees that grow in the Ozarks.

We took the back roads and passed through a number of small towns before
arriving at our destination for the night — Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

I will say that this is not exactly the most accessible corner of America. The
town itself is quite hilly, and sidewalks with curb-cuts are lacking in most areas.
Cherrie was able to manage in some areas, but only with our assistance. It would
be much more difficult for someone in a power wheelchair.

I’ve gotten a lot of mail from my readers about their experiences in Eureka
Springs, and most folks had problems finding a truly wheelchair-accessible hotel.
Some of the places that advertised wheelchair-accessible rooms just didn’t
measure up. That’s why you have to learn to ask a lot of questions about the
access features of a property before you book a room.

That said, after a bit of research we did manage to track down a very accessible
property — The Best Western Inn of the Ozarks. The manager has a very good
understanding of access issues, and the two wheelchair-accessible rooms — both
with roll-in showers — are very nicely done. Additionally, they have a very nice
restaurant on the premises, which is located very close to the accessible rooms.
All in all, it’s a great place to stay if you opt to explore this part of the country.

And despite the access challenges, I still highly recommend a visit to the area. It’ s
a great place for a drive in the country. Just plan ahead, and don’t expect to find
accessible restaurants and restrooms in every town. They are there, but you do
have to search them out.

Oh and another word of warning ? don’t rely on GPS in Northwestern Arkansas.
For some odd reason, it just doesn’t work there. Stick to the old fashioned tried-
and-true maps!

Tomorrow we head west for Amarillo. It will basically be a long day of driving,
before we slow down to explore some stops along Historic Route 66.