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Scottsdale to Syracuse, NY via Flagstaff to Blanding

Discussion in 'Mountain/Southwest' started by nh-srt8, May 22, 2015.

  1. nh-srt8

    nh-srt8 Member

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    I'm about to start our cross country adventure next week and the first day leg has me worried. The route planner in the S is showing Flagstaff to Blanding. I have an 85D that will be loaded with three adults and lots of luggage. Is this really doable or do you think I should take the safer route via Gallup/Farmington.

    What do you think
    Regards,
    Nigel
     
  2. Killface

    Killface Member

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    I've been hoping to try that route for a while now but haven't gotten to it yet. However, there are NEMA 14-50 outlets at Gouldings Campground in Monument Valley, and at Cottonwood RV Park in Bluff, UT. You could stop there for a little bit if you're worried you won't make it quite all the way to Blanding. People say good things about Gouldings and it's a beautiful area. I believe they charge a $10 flat fee to plug in there. Depending on how much your time is worth, that may be a better alternative than going through Gallup and Farmington.
     
  3. Model S P

    Model S P Member

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    I would suggest that you try Flagstaff Holbrook Blanding route. EVtripPlaner has Holbrook to Blanding at 249 rated miles with speed at 1.1 and 800 lbs. payload. Flagstaff to Blanding is 252 actual miles and EVtripPlaner puts it at 278 rated miles. Check windyty.com before you leave. If it looks like you will have headwinds or strong crosswinds, you may need to go Flagstaff Holbrook Gallup to Blanding. You could also go Flagstaff Holbrook Gallup to Farmington, NM to Grand Junction, CO where you pick up I-70. I went this route to KC last month. Farmington, NM to Grand Junction, CO is 215 miles (193 RM, -951 feet elev.). Although this leg is only 225 miles, it takes over 4 1/2 hours with a couple sections where the prevailing speed is only 45 mph, lots of twisties and great scenery in the mountains.
     
  4. earcandy

    earcandy Member

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    As an added data point, although I didn't go all the way to Blanding, I did just go from Flagstaff to Bluff for a rafting trip. My rated miles were 217 with 2 adults and 100 lbs payload.
    If you need more juice in Bluff, as mentioned earlier, try the Cottonwood RV park, and go eat at the Cottonwood Steak house. I seem to remember they don't open until about 5:30pm though.

    Good luck!
     
  5. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    Several of us have done the Flagstaff to Blanding route. Just plan a while at Flagstaff to do a 99% charge. To expand on what Killface said:

    1. Tuba City, AZ — Quality Inn Navajo Nation, 10 N Main St — If you eat at their restaurant, or shop at the Navajo Gift Shop, charging is free at the campground. Check in at the hotel.
    2. Monument Valley — Goulding's RV — Van tours of Monument Valley
    3. Bluff, UT — Cottonwood RV Park — I have not used this place, but have spoken with them on the phone and they were very EV friendly. This located just before the climb up to Blanding.

    If you set your destination to the Blanding Supercharger at Flagstaff, then go to the Energy:Trip pane, it does a good job of showing you the expected battery percentage at the destination, taking into account elevation changes. It will probably be negative as you leave Flagstaff. Just drive moderately (I set the cruise control to 55 at the start) and drive 10 miles or so and check again; repeat as needed. It's better to start slowly and speed up than vice versa. The prediction will use the last 5-10 miles and project to the destination. You can most likely make it all the way without a top up, but some food in Tuba City or some time in Monument Valley should give you plenty of margin to make it to Blanding, easily. If you get to Bluff and the predicted arrival charge in Blanding is less than 3%, you probably want to stop and grab a few Joules before the climb to Blanding.

    This is beautiful route and I highly recommend it. Just be careful, drive moderately, and keep an eye the Energy:Trip screen; you will do fine.

    I don't like the Holbrook-Blanding route because the road is much more lonely, and you miss Monument Valley.
     
  6. MacLeodMX

    MacLeodMX Member

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    That makes for a very long day if you are stopping at RV parks. Your travelling companions will not enjoy it as much as quick super charger stops. I drove Scottsdale - Flagstaff - Holbrook - Gallup - Farmington and would highly recommend staying at the Marriott in Farmington overnight.
     
  7. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    I beg to differ. At 437 miles on the 4-corners, S-turn route, Flagstaff-Holbrook-Gallup-Farmington-Blanding, vs 246 miles driving Flagstaff to Blanding via Monument Valley, it is far less travel time to do the direct route. EVTripPlanner puts the rated miles at 225 for that route driving at average speed. The RV parks are just insurance. Besides, the Flagstaff to Blanding via Monument Valley path is a much prettier route; I have done both a couple of times...

    OTOH, if you want to go the Gallup-Farmington way, consider getting to Silverthorne via the 70-Amp J1772's in Pagosa Springs and Salida, CO. See 4 Corners EV Charging for details on the other way to cut a side of the 4-corners, S-turn.
     
  8. nh-srt8

    nh-srt8 Member

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    Thank you for all the advice. I'm probably going to try the route with the RV park as a backup. That is unless I bottle out on Wednesday when I hit flagstaff. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.
     
  9. Polly Wog

    Polly Wog Member

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    @nh-srt8, I'm in Flagstaff now, and am going to do the Flagstaff to Blanding stretch on Sunday. I will post on this thread how it goes. In the meantime, here are pics of the trip and nav displays with Blanding plugged in. With a 95% charge, it shows a 4% destination SOC. I'm going to follow @Cottonwood's advice, as he knows better than most. image.jpg image.jpg
     
  10. MacLeodMX

    MacLeodMX Member

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    Why would you head to Blanding? That's not the Final destination. Skip Blanding and head on to Moab. I would not advise a new road tripper with passengers and lots of cargo to go under 15% SoC. You can't predict rain or headwinds. You must be familiar with what you can expect of the car before doing that.
     
  11. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    Once again, I beg to differ.

    Keeping a conservative, predicted SoC for the destination is always good practice. 15% is not a bad threshold for a conservative, SoC margin at the destination. However, notice that Polly Wog is showing a 4% buffer at 95% SoC in Flagstaff. Continue the charge to 99% where the taper becomes slower than a 14-50 and you can depart with 8% margin. This can be pushed up to your 15% recommendation for a newbie with 45 minutes of charging on one of the three 14-50's along the route or by driving a little slower. Reducing speed by 3.5% will reduce energy needs by about 7%; 3.5% slower on a 4 hour trip is only 8.5 minutes extra drive time.

    I would never recommend a newbie to head out on a trip across the desert at the limits of range without alternatives, but this trip has at least three charging alternatives, and no need for hours at an RV park. On top of that, it is almost 200 miles shorter! Finally, if you do take the long way around via Gallup and Farmington, you still pass through Blanding on the way to Moab...
     
  12. MyJoule

    MyJoule Member

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    #12 MyJoule, May 23, 2015
    Last edited: May 23, 2015
    If you are heading east from Scottsdale, I would suggest you can make it to Holbrook from Scottsdale on a full range charge if you drive the speed limit. I drove from Chandler to Holbrook recently and had 40 miles range left when I arrived at the Holbrook superchargers. You get warnings you aren't going to make it about 1/2 way up to the rim, but then on the way down from Payson, you make up the range-

    I would chime in that 15% margin is the least I would start a leg with- I usually started each leg of my trip with 20% and finished somewhere about 17% almost with out fail- I drove conservatively and didn't run out of power anywhere on my trip despite lots of heavy rain on the way east and lots of headwinds on the way west.

    And for making it to I-70 I would suggest a better and safer route is via I-40 and I-35 If you have access to a Chademo adapter you can charge in ABQ, and in probably only a few days you can use the ABQ superchargers- they are almost finished. look at the ABQ supercharger thread for updates. if you don't have a Chademo- you can charge at other J1772's around ABQ- just look on Plugshare.com to confirm where...

    I just drove from Tucson to Indiana and had only a few small issues- My car was loaded with luggage but not people so YMMV.. Weather in OK was horrible. The Perry Supercharger was not working when I got to it, but it was working 2 days ago on my way back. You need to stop at Tucumcari Supercharger which for some reason Tesla hasn't officially dedicated so it's not in the maps, but it's at the Holiday Inn Express just off I-40 so it's easy to find- I used it successfully both ways. If you go I-40 to OKC and I-35 to Topeka then join I-70 heading east you will likely do just as well as you might do trying to slog through the wilds of northern AZ and Southeastern UT. Getting across MO w/o Columbia was not hard, just drove 5 under for the 1st 1/2 just to make sure I made it- I had 40 miles range when I arrived in St Charles after a range charge in Independence. As for getting to Syracuse- your bigger problem is going to be how to get from Cleveland to Syracuse. You likely have to go to the east coast corridor. Safe travels no matter which route you choose-
     
  13. Cottonwood

    Cottonwood Roadster#433, Model S#S37

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    @MyJoule: All good advice, and the I-40/I-35 route is probably more practical, but the Flagstaff-Monument Valley-Moab/I-70 route is so much more beautiful!!!

    Either way, long distance EV driving is a great experience in a Model S!!!
     
  14. MyJoule

    MyJoule Member

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    I agree that long distance travel in the Model S is a great experience and while the wilds of N AZ and SE UT is beautiful, the wind can be killer...especially in the spring....
     
  15. Polly Wog

    Polly Wog Member

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    @nh-srt8, I completed my Flagstaff to Blanding run today with no range issues, just being careful and conservative. Started with a 99% charge, finished with 12% (33 rated miles). Trip planner had estimated 8%, but I went 5 mph under the speed limit whenever the speed limit was 65. The winds started out as cross/tail, but died down when I turned onto hwy 160. Note, the trip planner tried to bypass Monument Valley - ignore it and go that way anyway (hwy 163 at Kayenta) no extra range required, and spectacular scenery! Also, trip planner had issues when I stopped for lunch, and couldn't recalculate, so I went to settings and disabled it, then re-entered the Blanding supercharger as my destination and continued. The screen photo is from Blanding, and it shows that I averaged 254 wh/m. I wasn't as loaded down as you will be, but that shouldn't matter too much. image.jpg
    image.jpg
     
  16. jrreno

    jrreno Nothin' left to do but smile, smile, smile

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    That recalculation fault on restart must be a bug. I have it everytime I use the new navigation. I have made a " bug report" on it.
    Gorgeous pic!
     
  17. ZBB

    ZBB Emperor

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    Just a side comment… nh-srt8's location says "Carefree", which is north of Scottsdale. Its ~18 miles just to get back south to Shea Blvd in order to get to Hwy 87 to head to Payson and then Holbrook...

    EV Trip Planner suggests Carefree-Holbrook (via Payson)-Blanding is doable -- but is 414 miles, with 420 RM needed (speed= 1.0, with 700lb payload, 72 internal and 85 exterior temps).

    To compare, Carefree-Flagstaff-Blanding is 382 miles, with 418 RM needed with the same settings…

    Someone coming from south Scottsdale or the SE valley, going Payson to Holbrook would make sense, but other parts of the Phoenix area, Flagstaff makes more sense...
     
  18. nh-srt8

    nh-srt8 Member

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    Polly Wog thanks for the confirmation and we have decided that we are going to go that way for this trip. We done the ABQ route to DFW multiple times a year when we had our house in North Texas in our ICE vehicle and my wife is looking for a change. We will have the RV parks as backup. Although I do live in Carefree but I put Scottsdale since we have to take the dogs into boarding at the 101 but now we have booked them in the night before so that we can get an earlier start to the day.

    As MyJoule mentioned Cleveland to Syracuse is a blackhole currently for Supercharging so we plan on heading up through Detroit and cross into Canada to go around the north shore of Lake Ontario. I was hoping Buffalo would be open but doesn't look like that will happen before we pass through or our return.

    Thanks again and I'll post how we get on.
     
  19. nh-srt8

    nh-srt8 Member

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    Its been a couple of weeks since we completed the trip and thought I just post some thoughts on the journey. We spent 9 days doing the roundtrip and those days were long, typically 14 hours a day. This wasn't a trip where we could stop and see the sights, 4 days each way, one day in Syracuse. Just get there, unload, settle our daughter into her college apartment, and return. Few mistakes I made were trying to pre-plan by booking hotels ahead. I overestimated the distance we could drive in a day and the first night ended up buying two hotel rooms since I couldn't cancel the one I pre-booked as I was outside the cancelation window. I used the trip planner to provide a guide for range and time planning and it definitely needs work.

    For the Blanding leg I started at 10 miles below the speed limit and then pick up steam later in the journey when I knew we had a buffer. It's a little embarrassing being passed by RV's but this was my first long leg ever between superchargers and I wasn't taking any risks. Got the Blanding to 9% SOC. The first night we overnighted at the Residence Inn Glenwood Springs. I was hoping to get to Breckenridge but we were just exhausted.

    The next day I had a real panic attack when setting off from Goodland to Hays when the trip planner routed us back to Goodland due to insufficient range. This was actually incorrect and after some stress I reduced speed until I knew that we had sufficient range. (It did this on the return on this leg even though we had more than enough range to complete the segment). Our destination the second night was Independence, MO. The charger here is in a remote part of the parking lot at the Bass Pro shops and I didn't feel very safe when no one is around in the parking lot.

    On the third day our destination was Detroit. While getting a range charge at Independence, MO the route planner said it was time to leave but on checking it wanted us to re-route backwards to Topeka and return here for a further charge. A long day we overnighted at the hotel at GM headquarters the Marriott Renaissance Center. Thought we might get struck by lightning. I didn't realize that the Detroit Grand Prix was that weekend but when we arrived at valet the next morning to pick up the car a bunch of mechanics were checking it out. After a brief discussion we set off to the tunnel to Canada. The Canadian immigration officer actually knew why we were heading to Syracuse through Canada and we had a pleasant discussion about the car and the supercharger network. On the other side of the border it was a different story. The US border patrol was less convinced until I showed her our route on the trip planner.

    On the return I didn't plan the hotels until the day of arrival. We stopped at Detroit again and then the next two nights we used destination charging locations. The first was the Tiger hotel in Columbia and the second night we stayed at the Arrabelle in Vail. Both hotels I highly recommend and if wasn't for destination charging we wouldn't have visited. I left with a full charge on both days.

    The final day was the worst. We had a really strong headwind from Blanding. So much so that we couldn't make it to Flagstaff. We had to charge at Gouldings camp ground in Monument Valley. The staff were really nice and we had dinner at their restaurant. We spent 3 hours here which made the final day extremely long. The wind did not let up all the way into Flagstaff and we made it with 3% spare. If I'd known how stressful this was I wouldn't have gone this way and routed the southern route through Albuquerque and spent another night.

    One final event. Having completed over 5,700 miles roundtrip the S performed flawlessly. While taking my son to the airport the next day as luck would have it I got hit by a rock on the 202 and chipped the windshield.

    It was an experience and I would do it again but until there is another supercharger somewhere between Flagstaff and Blanding I won't got that way again.
     

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