We left Fort Pierce on Friday, December 20th, headed for our next destination, Riverbend RV Resort in Labelle, FL, a drive of 104 miles. Riverbend is located at 5800 W State Road 80 and is approximately 20 miles east of Fort Myers on the west coast.
Our planned route was to take SR-70W, then after 63 miles, take US-27S to SR-29S to SR-80W. Initially it was an easy ride – SR-70 at first was a 4 lane divided highway but then from the city of Okeechobee all the way to the intersection of US27, it turned into a two lane highway with unusually narrow lanes. OK for cars but not so great for motor homes and trucks.
The lanes seemed to be about a foot narrower than standard, even the slightest deviation at the wheel and the tires were riding over the painted lines. As trucks approached, Rob (and usually the truck) would have to drive over the raised pavement markers along the edge of the road and straddle the shoulder of the road to ensure good clearance. Practically every other vehicle was a truck so it was a rather noisy drive! If you ever drive this route we suggest avoiding SR-70 west of Okeechobee.
US-27 was a much more pleasant six lane highway with normal sized lanes. We then turned onto SR-29 which brought us into Labelle where we crossed the Caloosahatchee River and turned onto US-80, finally arriving at Riverbend around 12:30pm. Note that there are other bridges over the Caloosahatchee in the area but most are limited to car traffic only and have low weight limits. Overall it wasn’t a bad drive.
Riverbend is a Class A RV Resort with approximately 315 sites and 4 park models which are owned by the owners association and can be used by guests of the owners. Read our detailed review of Riverbend.
When we pulled up to the gate, we were greeted by one of the work campers who instructed us to pull into the large staging area where we could unhitch the toad and then come into the office to check in. In the office we were greeted by the very friendly staff, Joyce and Rich (also work campers). When we made our reservation, we reserved site #47 which happens to be for sale.
Since we had been here before we were asked if we wanted to make our way to our site ourselves or if we wanted to be escorted. Since last time we were here, our escort accidentally backed into our van with his golf cart, we opted to find the site ourselves. Note the Rich mentioned in our previous post is not the same one who was in the office when we checked in.
I lead the way in the van and after making a few wrong turns, we eventually found site #47. In 2012 when we stayed here, we had site 189 – our only complaint was that there was no outside table so when I made the reservation for this trip I requested a site with outdoor furniture. When we arrived I was surprised and pleased to see 2 chaise lounge chairs and a small landscaped patio area with a table, an umbrella and 4 chairs.
Since Riverbend is an ownership resort, with some of the sites, you can also rent the small casita on the site for an additional charge (we didn’t). These are configured by the owner and could have a little kitchen, a bathroom, a sitting area, a bedroom or a laundry room or a combination of these options. To read about the many amenities, go to our 2012 post about the resort.
Riverbend has four types of sites:
- Woodside – back in site with views of natural landscape
- Lakeside – pull in with the coach facing a lake
- Creekside – a pull in with natural shade
- Riverside – a pull in with views of the Caloosahatchee River.
Site #47 is considered a woodside site but there are no coaches across from us so we have a lovely view of the small lake and fountain from our front window but we’re paying the less expensive woodside rate. Behind our site is a wide expanse of grass and the woods. It is really quite lovely.
After settling in, we took a quick spin around the resort on our bikes. We were surprised to see two more Entegra Aspire rigs as well as a couple of Entegra Anthem coaches. We don’t see that many around and are looking forward to meeting the owners. Stay tuned for more on our relaxing (?) stay here!
Note: click a photo to expand it then use the left and right arrow keys on your keyboard to scroll to the next or previous photo. Apologies to mobile viewers, we are working on resolving our formatting issues for you.