Who Should Use the Disabled Loo?

restroomI have to admit that I was a little puzzled by a news item that I ran across last week about a grass roots campaign in the UK to make it “more comfortable” for people with invisible disabilities to use the accessible toilets there. Apparently when seemingly able-bodied people walk out of the accessible NKS toilets across the pond, they are getting “the look” or an audible “tsk-tsk” from passers-by. To alleviate this, there is a push to change the symbol on the accessible toilets from the standard wheelchair pictogram, to a pictogram of wheelchair with two able-bodied people. OK, that part made perfect sense to me, as there certainly are folks with invisible disabilities who need accessible facilities. Continue reading

What Exactly is an Accessible Trail?

Trail access information plaque

Trail access information plaque

Although it’s relatively easy to determine if a building is wheelchair-accessible (stairs vs. a level or ramped entry), it’s a bit more difficult to evaluate the accessibility of a trail. At first glance it might appear that if a wheelchair-user can manage a trail, then it must accessible, right? Well, not exactly, because not all wheelchair-users have the same ability. Continue reading

Uber Erects More Accessibility Roadblocks

Although Uber has long claimed that it’s not bound by the regulations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, it just makes common sense to make this service as accessible as possible. In fact, I had high hopes when Uber introduced their new WAV app that allows customers to order an accessible vehicle with a few taps and a swipe or two. And in theory that works; however since Uber doesn’t have enough accessible vehicles to meet the demand, it falls short of a viable solution. Continue reading

Ride ‘Em Cowboy…and Cowgirl!

Team Roping -- not just for men at the Cody Night Rodeo

I’m a rodeo gal at heart. After all, some of my earliest memories are of the Clovis Rodeo, watching my dad ride saddle broncs and bulls. So I’m thrilled whenever I have the opportunity to take in a rodeo on my travels. Such was the case last night, when I got to enjoy the famous Cody Night Rodeo – the longest running night rodeo in the country. Continue reading

What’s Up With This Accessible Parking Spot?

"Accessible" parking spot in New Hope, PA?

I see a lot of different things as I cross the country, but this “accessible” parking spot really made me scratch my head yesterday. It is across the street from the New Hope, PA Visitors Center, and as far as I can tell it’s one of the very few accessible spots in town. Continue reading

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

What's wrong with this shower? It's not wheelchai-accessible, as the innkeepers claim.

Remember that game you used to play in Highlights Magazine? The one where you’d circle the things that were wrong with an innocuous looking picture? Well, today we are going to play the adult version. It’s called “What’s Wrong with this ‘Accessible’ Shower?” Continue reading

A Hocking Hills Find

There's even a special bear bench for Cherrie near the cabin!

Every time I visit Ohio’s Hocking Hills I discover a new cool accessible lodging option—and this time was no exception. Last night we stayed in a very accessible creekside cabin near Logan, Ohio. It was compact, but still had room enough for a wheelchair, and it included a small kitchen and a lovely back deck. There was also a private hot tub on the deck, but it wasn’t accessible. Continue reading

Hot Off The Press — New Grand Canyon Access Guide

Barrier-Free Travel; The Grand Canyon for Wheelers and Slow Walkers

Gearing up for the summer travel season, and trying to decide where to go? Well, how about the Grand Canyon? Think it’s not accessible? Then think again. My newest book, Barrier-Free Travel: The Grand Canyon for Wheelers and Slow Walkers, highlights accessible trails, sites, and lodging options on the north and south rims, includes access details about the Grand Canyon Railway, and provides hard-to-find access information about Grand Canyon West.

Highlights of the book include:

· Details on Accessible Bus and Helicopter Tours

· Access at the Grand Canyon Skywalk

· Shuttle Bus Routes and Access Details

· Special Access Passes and Permits

· Photos of Accessible Rooms

· Accessible Lodging at the Williams Railway Depot

· Windshield Views Throughout the Park

And although the iconic mule ride to the bottom of the canyon isn’t accessible, I’ve also included a little known driving route that’s located on Hualapai land.

Even better, this book is the first in a series of accessible travel guides to popular US destinations. And although it’s a great resource for wheelchair-users and slow walkers, moms who have stroller-aged kids will also appreciate the access information in this guide, as well as the future books in this series.

So surf on by the www.BarrierFreeGrandCanyon.com for more information about my newest book.

 

A Musical Surprise in Phoenix

Musical Instrument Museum, Phoenix

To be honest, I really wasn’t looking forward to visiting the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Phoenix, but it’s something that I had to check out for my readers. I figured that I’d see some instruments and learn a little bit about their history, and maybe if I was real lucky I’d also get to hear a little music. I wasn’t expecting much, as I’m not a real musical instrument fan, so I kind of figured that I’d be bored to tears. Boy, was I ever wrong! Continue reading