Everglades Isle Motorcoach Resort

Booking out past January 2019 is proving to be a bit challenging. For our final month in Florida, we are still deciding between three motorcoach resorts: Pelican Lake Motorcoach Resort, MotorCoach Resort St. Lucie West and Everglades Isle Motorcoach Resort.

We are waitlisted at Pelican Lake and MotorCoach Resort St. Lucie West. Not because they are sold out this early. It is because they are not ready to accept any new bookings. We’ve been told that there won’t be any issues booking us into these resorts however we wanted to make sure that we had our first few months in Florida confirmed.

Everglades Isle was able to take a booking and we reserved a site with them from January 5, 2019 to February 1, 2019. A waterfront site, site number 15. We might change our mind however we do like the resort and its location.

Everglades is a Class A restricted resort where coaches need to be ten years or younger and in excellent condition although I suspect that they would allow older coaches provided they are in excellent condition.

Large pads topped with brick pavers. Even the roads in the park are topped with brick pavers. Free cable at site, free WiFi at site, full hookups with 100 amp service. And some nice amenities at the clubhouse.

Andy, the Gadget Guru, did up a full review at his website which you can find here.

This is his short video on a tour of the park:

We now have our first three months planned out although we are still debating the drive down to Florida from Canada. We are intending to take 5 days for the drive down. One approach is to take two long days and hang out at the Hilton Head Island Motorcoach Resort November 2, 3 and 4th and then leave early on the 5th to arrive at Myakka River Motorcoach Resort. Another approach would be to take a far more leisurely drive and not spend more than 5 hours a day on the road and try our chances at whatever RV park might be handy in that range.

Hilton Head looks nice though.

More to come on the plans for the journey out from Florida over to California.

All this planning does take my mind off the bitter cold temperatures we are still experiencing here in Canada.

Riverbend Motorcoach Resort

For our second month south, we will be moving from Myakka River Motorcoach Resort to Riverbend Motorcoach Resort. Riverbend is located in Labelle Florida and it is only an hour or so drive from Myakka.

We will be checking in on Wednesday, December 5th, Lorraine’s birthday. We are there for one month departing January 4th, 2019.

Here is a satellite view of the property. From this perspective, the place looks huge with 315 sites.

Our lot, should it hold, is located at the top right of the property. Here it is from a closer angle.

It is a pull-in site facing the water. Lots of shoulder room on that site.

50 amp service and, hooray, Internet service (DSL) to the coach for $30 per month — only available for stays of one month or longer.

Shifting into the peak season sees a pretty steep increase in monthly pricing. We have spoken to a number of Class A parks in Florida and they have all told us the same thing: they pack things out in the first three months of the year. The market is clearly willing to pay.

Canadian dollar is dropping these days so our first year out is going to be a bit more expensive than originally planned. I just hope the loonie doesn’t crater to 65 cents or so.

I remember going into the states many years back when our dollar was basically a peso. Not much fun.

I found this video about Riverbend. No sound but it does provide some excellent visuals of the property.

We will be spending one more month in Florida and it looks like we may not have a confirmation for the next park for a few weeks yet. We are on some waitlists as some of the properties determine which lots are available to rent. We have been working through a list of 8 motorcoach resorts. Some really nice properties to consider.

And then we make our booking for our stay in Indio, California.

Where will we stop on our travels from Canada to Florida and from Florida to California and then back to Canada?

Still figuring that one out.

Myakka River Motorcoach Resort

With one winter slowly passing and a new winter not too far away, we have finally started booking our stays for our first trip south as snowbirds.

We will be leaving Canada on Thursday, November 1st to arrive at Myakka River Motorcoach Resort on Monday, November 5th.

We have booked lot 98 which is a river view lot. On the map below, it is the second site down on the bottom left of the resort property.

The lot dimensions are 84′ by 50′, which is a good size. 100 amp service available although we run a 50 amp coach. RV Park Reviews are very strong with 10 out of 10 reviewers rating the resort as excellent. Good WiFi — which I hope will be the case once we get there — and reasonably close to some of our family that live in Florida.

Here is a promo video from Myakka:

Myakka River is a Class A Motorcoach only resort. The owners of the resort are on site. The park is gated and fenced with a coded security entrance gate.

Lorraine enjoyed her discussion with Amber, one of the owners, and came away with a very positive experience.

We will leave Myakka on Wednesday. December 5th to reposition for our second booking in Florida about an hour away.

More on the second booking next time.

Fly In and Buy

The view from my window seat on an Airbus. This was taken last year when Lorraine and I made a trip down to Las Vegas.

Sunland RV Resorts sent me two different promotions.

One for Naples Motorcoach Resort and one for Silver Palms RV Resort.

Between March 15 and April 1st, Naples is offering a limited-time Fly & Buy offer. You leave your motorcoach at home, explore ownership opportunities at Naples, and if you purchase a lot by the end of the stay, your trip is reimbursed. Pretty narrow timeframe though. A mere two-week window.

Silver Palms is also offering a limited-time Fly & Buy offer. Their window? May 15 – September 15. Much longer.

I wonder what that means? Is Naples more popular than Silver Palms?

The pricing is always a bit of a mystery as neither park publishes their prices on their websites although some of the lots are listed on other property websites and lot prices seem to be roughly similar, around the $150,000 mark.

We might consider ownership at some point. Particularly if we find ourselves returning to the same area year after year.

But not right now. We want to explore a bit first.

In terms of a Fly & Buy promotion, I’m not sure why I would want to leave our motorcoach behind. After all, the whole point would be to experience the park with our motorcoach. Staying offsite at a nearby hotel seems almost pointless.

Of course, when the motorcoach is stranded in storage for the winter, it might be the only option if there was a desire to buy right now. I can’t imagine requesting such an offer and then having to manage the pressure to purchase if I wasn’t already sold on a lot. Oh well. Perhaps they have lots of people go down on impulse.

Here is our coach in its storage facility.

Sad and lonely I imagine.

Campground of the Year

We stay at KOAs. But only when we don’t have a choice. I find most of them to be too expensive for the experience which is generally very tight sites, gravel pads and, for big rigs like ours, tight access and issues with clearing trees.

Every year, KOA selects a campground of the year. For 2018, the winner is the Delaware Water Gap/Pocono Mountain KOA Holiday.

This would be one of their sites:

If that was the campground of the year, I was curious to see one of the worst KOA campgrounds. I didn’t have to work that hard to find it. Acton/Los Angeles North KOA. A typical review on tripadvisor:

Disgusting rat hole of a campground

This is the worst place ever… with the sewer smell from the septic tank… ants crawling all over the walls and toilets in the bathrooms and the laundry room is a joke and the prices this place charges you can go up to the rv resort on Sierra Highway for the same price you have cell phone service and WiFi and a beautiful view of the valley and a swimming pool that is taken care of properly …. so people if you are passing thru the Acton area this is not the place to stay. Again go to the rv resort on Sierra Highway for top of the line camping experience

Pretty brutal comments all around.

The sites there appear to have no boundaries. They look to be offered on an unpaved parking lot with very little separation.

It makes me appreciate some of the beautiful spots we have found in our travels to date. Especially in the Petoskey, Michigan area.

And I am certain that we will find many more beautiful spots for our coach in the years to come. If that means the occasional stay in a more rustic KOA setting in transit, so be it. All part of the experience.