RV Parks & Campground Information
Be it a young child with a physical disability requiring the use of a wheelchair, an adult who has gone through a tragic life changing event leaving the person with a mobility impairment, a veteran of war (be it on U.S. or foreign soil) who has lost the use of one or more limbs, such as our WWII vets, Vietnam vets and those “wounded warriors” returning from the Middle East, or an elderly person who simply has more mobility difficulties now than earlier in life. It does not matter what the disability is. It is about the person, not about the disability. Mark Douglass, the Founder and President of RVing Accessibility Group is passionate about helping others find places they can visit without sacrificing one’s dignity or independence. Mark was born with severe mobility impairments and through numerous surgeries was able to walk. When he went to enlist in the draft during the Vietnam war, he was denied due to his history of disability. Later in life, he experienced more mobility issues and his experience and travels have led him to this mission.
Our mission is not about Mark or any of the members of the organization. It is about the millions of Americans in the beautiful country who simply need to know the truth about accessibility and where they can find freedom and independence in an outdoor recreational setting such as camping with friends or loved ones.
We understand how difficult it can be to enjoy travel for people with disabilities when staying at an RV park or campground that does not meet one’s expectations. We found that the difference between expectation and reality is disappointment. We hope we can eliminate the disappointment by developing a list of RV parks and campgrounds that meet your expectations when it comes to traveling with disabilities. The following information was obtained by the President and Founder, Mark Douglass and his caregiver/wife Ellie, during their park examinations over the last few years and much of which was done while using assistive mobility equipment. It is offered as Phase I of our long-term goal. It is our sincere hope that you will find this information useful in choosing a park that provides a level of accessibility that is acceptable and meets your expectations. For further information about RVing Accessibility Group planned phases II, III and IV, please visit the Methodology page.
We trust you will be patient as our journey to provide factual and legitimate information is dependent on donations and sponsors who support our mission and want to join us in encouraging recreational travel regardless of one’s disability. With adequate funding we will continue to gather more and more information on accessible RV parks and campgrounds as well as large rest areas. It is not uncommon at all to arrive in a town only to find that of all the RV Parks we examine, there may not be any that provide any level of accessibility for someone with limited mobility. It is also not uncommon to come across settings where the management/owners do not understand ADA compliance be it a private or public entity. And we gladly offer our services to educate those individuals on the benefits of becoming an accessible, if not fully ADA compliant, park. Please be patient as we continue our research throughout this great nation of ours. We are lucky if we find 1 accessible park for every 10 we examine, and yet that 1 is not ADA compliant. It is a very difficult and uniquely challenging task but one that is sorely needed to address the numerous issues regarding compliance with accessibility standards for outdoor recreation areas in an effort to provide accurate data and information. If a park has not been examined by one of our accessibility specialists, it will NOT be listed on our website. We do not take suggestions. Every park, rest area, visitor center listed has been personally examined by at least one of our team members.
If you do find a park that you feel is accessible, we would like to hear from you on the Contact Us page so we can offer to perform a professional detailed assessment of accessible features, beginning with the RV site itself. When it comes to compliance, there is no grey area. It either is or it is not. There is no such thing as GRANDFATHERING regardless of the age of the facility. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 clearly defines what is required of existing facilities for accessibility and new construction standards that have recently been adopted by the 2012 International Building Code. Such requirements and standards are enforced by the U.S. Department of Justice.
We encourage you not to depend on campground directories that exhibit the international emblem for disability. Do not depend on the internet or billboards that imply accessibility, in some cases using the words, “handicap friendly”. In these cases, such would imply that all elements of the park are compliant, when our experience has been that they are not. Having said that, the parks listed on this website exhibit various levels of accessibility for wheelchair users, all of which we would stay at if a wheelchair was needed, yet none are fully ADA compliant.
As an Accessibility Specialist regarding ADA compliance and Outdoor Recreation Accessibility Standards, Mark Douglass continues the mission of the organization by having other members become properly trained to be Accessibility Specialists in an effort to broaden the base of coverage for the benefit of the travelers with disabilities searching for accessible facilities.
The United States is a beautiful country, best seen on the road and even better from an RV. We will continue to strive for excellence, and service the information needs of those RVers who wish to stay at RV parks that foster an overall environment conducive to dignity and independence. A little bit of FREEDOM goes a long way!
Click on the links below to view reviews of several RV Parks by State:
- New Mexico
- South Dakota
You can help us with our mission by being an annual or monthly financial supporter of our cause. Please feel free to go to our Make a Donation page and make a donation of any amount. A follow up regarding your considerate donation will be forthcoming via email or personal phone call as long as you leave the appropriate contact information on the Contact Us page. We thank those of you who have made financial contributions to help us make a difference, and promote an enjoyable way of life that so many people take for granted. We thank those of you who have yet to donate, but want to support our mission.
If you think you have what it takes to become an Accessibility Specialist, or simply an informant of parks that exhibit various levels of accessibility, we would like to talk with you. We have Ambassadors and State Directors who are currently helping gather information for assessment purposes in various states. If you are interested, please let us know on the CONTACT US page.
To obtain information on facilities in a particular state, just click on the state listed above.
For more information on campground accessibility standards go to www.access-board.gov/ada/index.htm