Saturday, April 30, 2011

Explora

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   We were in the area with a little extra time and free passes so we stopped in to check out this science and children’s museum. It has tons of hands of exhibits for grade school and middle school kids , not too much for older kids or adults.

   The exhibits are laid out in a maze of cubicles so navigating a wheelchair through may be tight at times and some of the exhibits are not within reach.

   Small RVs can park in the museum lot. Larger RVs can park along  the side streets. Explora

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The Albuquerque Museum of Art and History

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    One floor of the museum is dedicated to New Mexico art and the other floor to four centuries of Albuquerque history starting with the first Spanish expeditions into New Mexico.

    The museum is fairly handicapped accessible. The doors have push buttons to open and most of the exhibits are easy to view. There are a few short ramps and getting back to the elevator to leave requires retracing your steps through all of the exhibits.

   RVs can park along 19th street. Art and History Museum

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Friday, April 29, 2011

New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science

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    The museum traces the natural history of New Mexico from the big bang to the ice age 10,000 years ago. Most of it is accessible with just a few exhibits that are a little too high for easy viewing. Start on the second floor to follow the timeline correctly. An elevator is on the right just after the store. Some of the exhibits are along a wide ramped walkway that leads down to the first floor. I think that the ramp is ADA compliant. It seems a little steep but it has plenty of flat resting areas.

    There are large parking lots for this museum and several other nearby museums. Most RVs will not fit in the lots but free parking is available along  the side streets. Museum of Natural History

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

San Felipe's Casino Hollywood

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    Not the most scenic place to stay but it’s only $10.00 a night with electric hookups, except in the fall when the price rises to $20.00 for some reason. There’s also a free dump station and fresh water. And free WiFi! If you don’t need to hookup to the electricity staying overnight is free too. Park in the camping area even if you don’t use electricity because the casino lot is small.

    The camping area lot is loose gravel so rolling is very hard. Park close to the paved driveway. The curb cuts are good. The casino is roomy with easy to move chairs and low pile carpet. Some of the machines have club cards slots and ticket slots that are a little hard to reach. San Felipe Casino

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Museum of International Folk Art

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    The main exhibit area in this museum houses the collection of one man,Alexander Girard,an architect and designer. He and his wife donated their folk art collection with the stipulation that the exhibits be displayed in spaces designed by Girard. Houses , people , animals and plants made of clay,wood and other materials have been gathered together to make entire village scenes.

    Most of the museum is very accessible. There are a few exhibit cases that are a little high.

    Parking for RVs is available in the overflow lot located across the street from the museum. Part of the lot is gravel so park near the edge. After crossing the street there is a bit of a hill in the main lot. If you have a van or car ,there’s plenty of handicapped parking in the main lot. An elevator accesses the plaza where the folk art museum is located. The Museum of Spanish Colonial Art and the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture are also located in the plaza.  Folk Art Museum

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Friday, April 22, 2011

Working on the Maps

   We're going to be stationary for a few days. We're in Santa Fe,visiting a friend who is recovering from minor knee surgery so I'm using the down time to make more Google maps. I've just finished Colorado. Colorado has so many places to visit!  We probably won't be spending much time there on this trip across the country but all of the information will be handy  for the next time.

  I'm trying to make the maps easy to use but of course, the attractions and camping spots are geared towards our preferences. If you'd like to personalize them to your own style just sign up for a Google account then when you click on any of the map links you'll be also able to click on "Save to My Maps". Once the map is in your maps you can edit and add comments to all of the attractions.

 Also I welcome any suggestions to make the maps better.
 

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sandia Resort and Casino

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    A good overnight parking spot. The casino has set aside a huge parking lot for RVs. It’s fairly level and very quiet. Nice views depending on how you park. The parking is pretty far away from the casino entrance and most of the sidewalks do not have curb cuts. People in wheelchairs may find it easier to be dropped off at the entrance.

    The casino is large. The chairs are little awkward to move. The aisles between the machines could be a bit wider. Most of the machines have easy to reach money and card slots. Sandia Casino
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Monday, April 18, 2011

Cadillac Ranch

  There's a fence and gate around Cadillac Ranch! We've stopped here a couple of times and could go right up to the cars but now the opening is too narrow and there's a second gate that can't be opened until the first one is closed -absolutely no way that a wheelchair will fit. I discovered that the cars were moved  a few miles west to this location in 1997 so maybe we  visited at the original location. Cadillac Ranch


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Palo Duro Canyon State Park

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   We visited this park hoping that some of the trails would be a little accessible but they all are narrow with a deep rut in the middle. The handicapped sites,however,are very good. There are three newly built sites in the Sagebrush Campground. They have a large paved area for a RV and another vehicle and pavement to an accessible table,grill and fire pit. The paving also extends to the water and electrical hookups and to the restrooms.

  The terrain of the canyon is quite different from the surrounding Texas plains so even though there aren’t many accessible activities, the scenic drive along the canyon road is nice. The road down to the canyon is very steep-be prepared to downshift. The small visitor’s center is accessible but the road to the parking area is so steep that the rangers recommend parking in the lot above and walking down. A van should be fine but large RVs shouldn’t attempt it.  Palo Duro Canyon
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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum

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  This is an excellent museum. The museum itself is really big but the area of Texas,the panhandle that it covers is not,so the exhibits are very detailed.

   Most of the museum is accessible. Ramps lead to the entrances but they have double sets of doors which may be tricky to open without help. The admissions desk has a lowered section. A few of the exhibits are hard to view but most of them are fine. The theaters have enough room for wheelchairs at the edges of the seating.  There are  two separate elevators that must be used to see all of the different exhibits.

  Museum parking is marked with brown and white strips on the curbs and is available along the street or in the parking lot across the street from the museum’s front entrance. RVs can fit in the parking lot spaces if they’re backed up over the grass, otherwise park along the street. The sidewalks and curb cuts are in good condition.
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Friday, April 15, 2011

Wayne Russell RV Park

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   If you’re passing through Floydada,Texas this little city park is a good place to stay. The first two nights are free-$5.00 a night after that and 5 nights maximum stay. It has electric and water hookups and a dump station. There’s also a pool,opened in the summer and a few picnic tables in the grassy area. The camping area is flat and graveled-easy rolling.  Floydada
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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Mt Blanco Fossil Museum

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    The owner and curator of this museum has dug up hundreds of fossils from the lands around Crosbyton,Texas. Many are on display along with casts of  fossils found elsewhere. The main goal of the museum is to provide evidence of humans and dinosaurs coexisting and disprove evolution which makes the whole thing kind of weird. We’ve never heard of most of the theories that are laid out in the museum showcases.

  The front entrance has two steps but the back entrance is supposed to be handicapped accessible. Most of the exhibits are easy to view. Parking is available on the street. Fossil Museum

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Abilene Zoo

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  This is a very small zoo. The larger animals,like these giraffes,have few barriers on their enclosures so nothing obstructs viewing. Some of the others have cages and fencing which partially blocks the view for people in wheelchairs. The doors to the reptile and aviary displays are a bit heavy. I usually don’t pay much attention to the reptiles but most the ones in this zoo are very colorful and easy to view.
The paths are all fairly level and in good condition. The parking lot is large enough for RVs. The park surrounding the zoo includes a great playground and two fenced dog parks. Zoo
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Frontier Texas!

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   Visitors are led through the early history of west Texas with theater shows,special affects,recreated scenes and personal stories of historic figures.Very well done.

    At times it’s hard to understand what is being said because the  displays are close together and almost all of them have some type of automatic narration which means that they interfere with each other especially if  people are moving through at different paces.  It’s fairly wheelchair accessible but a some of the  displays  require turning spindles to read all of the information and they don’t have a very substantial  edge to grip.

  Motorhomes can park across the spaces in the lot. Frontier Texas
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Monday, April 11, 2011

SeaBee Park Free Camping

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  This isn’t really a campground.It’s part of Seabee Park,a local fishing area on the edge of Lake Fort Phantom Hill.It has a few paved spots with tables but we also camped in the opened grassy area. It’s a little rough around the edges.The asphalt is crumbling and the grills are missing but it’s quiet and close to Abilene. Camping is free with a 48 hour limit.

  Accessibility is limited. The tables are on concrete pads without ramps or access to the ends.The asphalt parking areas and roads make rolling around easy. The lake shore is pretty muddy.

I couldn’t find an official website. This site has some good maps of the park and surrounding area. SeaBee Park
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Texas Picnic Tables

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  There are hundreds of these small picnic areas along Texan rural roads.  Stays of up to 24 hours are permitted so we often use them for an overnight stop. There are three designs-one is just a widened  spot along the shoulder(not  a good place to overnight), the most common is the one pictured above which has a loop paralleling the road and the third has a larger loop farther away from the road with a larger picnic area. They all have at least one table. They used to have trash barrels but it looks like  the barrels have been removed from some of them. Years ago the more rural ones had a little ladder going up and over the barb wire fencing marking the boundary so that people could use the ranchland and the nearest bush as an alfresco restroom. Surprised smile  Most of them have a handicapped parking spot ,ramps up to the table ,concrete around the table and a long overhang on the table end.

  I’m going to mark the ones that we stay at on the Google map but unless there is something exceptional about them I’m not planning on writing a post. This one is about 10 miles north of Llano on the west side of the road. Like most of them ,it’s a little noisy from the traffic but fairly quiet once night falls. The ranch across the road is the home of a peacock who loudly announces dusk and dawn.

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Saturday, April 9, 2011

National Museum of the Pacific War

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   Plan on spending most of a day or even two at this museum. There are actually three museum buildings,a Japanese garden and several memorial areas. Admission tickets are good for 48 hours.

  We only made it partway through the main building,the George H.W.Bush Gallery. Everything is handicapped accessible-ramps to the entrance,push button doors,a low section on the ticket desk and concrete floors. All the signs and displays were easy to view.

Parking is at the visitor’s center which is directly across the street from the main building. The lot is large enough for RVs but may be crowded on weekends. The sidewalks and curb cuts are all in excellent condition. Pacific War Museum
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Friday, April 1, 2011

San Antonio Botanical Garden

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   Most wheelchair users will need to have some help to cover all of the different areas in this garden mostly because of the hilly terrain. Sections of some of the garden areas are not accessible or difficult for various reasons. The Sensory Garden has a steep downhill ramp leading into it. The Japanese Garden and a couple of the greenhouses have steps or uneven,narrow paving. The Cactus Garden has loose gravel.The East Texas Pineywoods isn’t paved but the ground is hard packed. 

  The far parking lot is large enough for RVs parked sideways across the spaces but it’s an uphill push to the garden entrance. Botanical Garden

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