TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

To fly or not to fly. Another SF-LA trip thread. Now with Autopilot!

Discussion in 'California' started by e-FTW, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Dear CA experts. Am leaning on your knowledge of this itinerary (SF-LA and back) and of the LA area traffic patterns (is there one?) to help/coax/encourage me. Moved here a year ago, and am not familiar with driving in the LA area. Still not sure I am doing it.

    Data:
    • Work requires me to be in the LA area next Monday (San Bernardino actually...)
    • Am planning to leave on Sunday.
    • The meeting is mid-day on Monday.
    • I would leave to go back to SF after lunch on Monday.
    • I can fly or drive, both are reimbursed for a similar amount.
    • Am thinking of staying at a favorite hotel in Huntington Beach on Sunday night (same for fly or drive).

    Idea:
    • I should drive! Take the S on a cool road trip.
    • On the way out, I may take the 101 for the sights.
    • On the way back, am wondering how fast I can make the trip back via I-5.

    Ths is still just an idea. My wife is not into coming with, because of work and the 12-13 hours of road time in two days, so I would be alone with podcasts and Autopilot. Still doable!

    What gets me going here is the thought of optimizing the drive back for the perfect balance of speed versus energy consumption versus supercharging speeds to try for a fast time. Geeks, what are you gonna do. :cool:
    The challenge with that is that none of the tools at my disposal provide for all of the magic numbers. Evtriplanner does not have the S70, nor does it display charging time required at each stop. The in-car planning does show charging times, but does not tell me how much of a buffer it plans for when getting to each stop except for the first one.
    So, am left with the usual questions of number of stops and driving speed. I have seen some threads from 2012 and 2013, and my search-fu may have kept me from more recent ones. Oh right! I do not have home charging. If I range charge in San Mateo this week, I can probably leave with north over 200 miles of range on Sunday.

    With that, thoughts? Should I do it? Anyone doing it at the same time as me?
    How bad will trafic mess with this plan?
     
  2. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2,405
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I would drive, of course. One thought is that you might want to skip LA altogether and take the Superchargers Harris Ranch to Mojave to Rancho Cucamonga.
     
  3. thecloud

    thecloud As rhythm raced inside, the ship came alive

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2014
    Messages:
    565
    Location:
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Sunday afternoons seem to be the busiest time at superchargers, so allow yourself plenty of time in case you have to wait for a stall. You'll probably be spending 30-45 minutes minimum at each SC stop. You don't need to charge to 100% at each, just enough to reach the next one with a little bit of a buffer.

    Last weekend I started out from Sunnyvale with a full 100% charge (~260 rated miles), and made it to Atascadero with under 60 miles remaining. While that trip is mostly flat, there are some grades which eat up the miles. And of course, the faster you drive, the less range you get.

    That's actually a good thing in L.A. traffic, though. If you are crawling along at 10-15 MPH, your range will be fantastic. :wink:
     
  4. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Makes sense, but as mentioned, I got it in my head to spend Sunday night in Huntington Beach.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Absolutely. And the make my charge time the shortest it can be, I actually want to get there at well below 20% SOC.

    But the faster I drive, the lower my SOC is when I get to a Supercharger, the faster the charge is to whatever it is I need to make it to the next one.
    Or I drive slower, and skip chargers altogether. Which sounds like a good plan for my scenic Sunday drive on the 101.
    But on the way back on Monday afternoon, I want to go for the fastest time possible.

    Indeed. This is where the podcasts and AP will come in handy!
     
  5. aesculus

    aesculus Still Trying to Figure this All Out

    Joined:
    May 31, 2015
    Messages:
    1,964
    Location:
    Northern California
    Personally I would just fly into Ontario airport Sunday night and get a room near your meeting place in San Bernardino. Get a rental car of your choice. Attend your meeting and get out of Dodge asap. Save your driving for another time. The drive from Ontario AP to SB is a breeze in most cases.

    Navigating LA traffic is not enjoyable in any vehicle and if you fly into LAX, stay in Huntington Beach and then travel to SB, you have probably covered most of LA's mess than you could if you tried. If you really must fly into LA area choose Long Beach airport for your stay in HB.

    My experience is from living in LA/OC for 27 years and moving to Nor Cal for the last 40 years but taking plenty of business and family trips to LA area during the last 40 too. I still have property in OC.
     
  6. abasile

    abasile Independent Software Eng.

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2012
    Messages:
    359
    Location:
    San Bernardino Mts., CA (Elev. 6100' / 1800m)
    For a short, solo trip like this, flying does seem more sensible.

    Also, if you want to stay overnight someplace interesting, you could go for the San Bernardino Mountains (Lake Arrowhead, Big Bear Lake, etc.) as there isn't any snow in the forecast that would hamper your travel (yet the ski resorts are open). Compared to Huntington Beach, traffic wouldn't be nearly as big a concern.
     
  7. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,343
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    I live in the same area as the OP. On the one hand, with a new Tesla with AP my heart says "drive it!" But my head says that flying SFO to Ontario will be much less overall travel time and you will completely bypass LA traffic, which sucks.
     
  8. ken830

    ken830 Model S (Res#P12,447)

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Messages:
    858
    Location:
    San Carlos, CA
    As others have said... For a short, solo trip, flying would generally be better, but having Autopilot would make it a pretty easy drive. He won't hit traffic Sunday evening going down, and he probably won't hit too much traffic if he leaves Monday right after lunch. Plus, the company reimbursement is the same for both driving and flying, so he will have a little extra spending money because all he will be spending is time (besides wear/tear on his car).
     
  9. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Oh, yes, you all make a lot of sense. Flying would definitely be to Ontario, and staying near SB. But then, I'd be emitting a bunch of CO2 flying, and driving on dino-juice. Oh, the humanity! :wink:

    Seriously, yes, the logical thing to do is just fly, I agree. But did you get this car on pure logic? I know I didn't!

    I cannot help but think I would avoid some trafic by driving to Huntington Beach (or even better near San Bernardino) on Sunday. And then the drive back on Monday would be straight from San Bernardino, which should allow me to skirt most of the trafic on the way out (via Mojave maybe, as suggested above).

    (Also, not booking my flights right now allows me to bail on the trip if somehow the situation in SB is not fully resolved by the weekend. Which it seems to be now, but that was not the case yesterday, and the wife was not enthusiastic about it. Understandably.)
     
  10. Ardie

    Ardie Member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2009
    Messages:
    161
    I have personally come to detest airline travel, and will tolerate it only when absolutely necessary. So my view may be a bit skewed toward automobile travel in this case.

    So. You wish to travel from San Francisco to Huntington Beach, traveling on Sunday, and going on to San Bernardino on Monday, then return (Monday evening) back to San Francisco.

    You can probably do all of your pre-trip preparations using some Google mapping, some Google searches for the Tesla supercharger sites in California, and a look at the weather.

    If it is the shortest block-to-block time you are after, then you should drive on down Interstate 5, and stop at Harris Ranch for juice. And maybe some food. Continue South on I-5, but before you get to Los Angeles, take Highway 405. It skirts downtown, but bogs down over the Sepulveda Pass and past LAX. :-( Take a quick detour on 105 over to SpaceX in Hawthorne and charge up again. Back on the 105 to the 405, and head south to "The OC." Exit the freeway on Bolsa Chica, or Beach Boulevard, depending on your destination.

    For a longer but more scenic trip, take the coastal route, i.e, San Jose, Highway 101 thru Gilroy, Salinas Paso Robles, and supercharge at Atascadero, and/or Solvang. More opportunities in Oxnard, Camarillo, and lots more along the 405 in Santa Monica, Torrance, and Long Beach.

    Then take the 405 on down to Huntington Beach as mentioned earlier.

    - - -

    From Huntington Beach (possibly the Waterfront Hilton on Pacific Coast Hwy?) to San Bernardino, its less than 90 miles, but you have to take Hwy 55 to Hwy 91 (and the FasTrak toll transponder will be a necessity/godsend to use the carpool lane, even with your white carpool sticker -- otherwise it will be 10-15 mph for *several* miles), to 215, and in to San Berdoo.

    In San Bernardino, the closest superchargers are in Pasadena, some 10-12 miles West of San Bernardino. And of course, there are a number of J1772 charging sites all over the place. Bring your adapter.

    -- Ardie
     
  11. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Wait, what?
    ...
    :-D

    (Yes, I heard everything else you said. All good tips! Hmm, don't have my transponder yet. Or the stickers. Has not been a need on the 280 and I am a slacker.)
     
  12. Khatsalano

    Khatsalano Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2015
    Messages:
    648
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    I would drive. Unless I can take a private jet, SFO - LAX is not exactly hassle free and quick. I drove to LA last month and it was about 6.5 hours with charging and a meal on I-5. I don't speed.

    - K
     
  13. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Considering my schedule (Sunday drive to Huntington Beach, Monday morning to SB, Monday PM to SF):
    • How much of a problem will my lack of white HOV sticker will be?
    • Am going to get a FasTrack transponder from a local store right now. Will that help?
     
  14. Khatsalano

    Khatsalano Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2015
    Messages:
    648
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    I don't think it matters much for most of your trip except for the Monday PM to SF, depending on when you arrive. There isn't much HOV access on US-101 (if you're coming from SB) until you hit the Bay Area. But even if you hit Silicon Valley during afternoon rush hour when HOV is active, you're screwed in terms of traffic no matter what! Careful of the cops near SB on 101 ... they ticket harshly in the 55mph segments.

    Fastrak transponder will not ease your traffic troubles. There are no pay-to-use lanes in that stretch.

    - K
     
  15. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Am not worried about the Bay Area that much. Maybe when going through San Jose on Monday night? I am used to the 280 between Silicon Valley and my place in SF.
    Am trying to get my hands on the 3-position Fastrak that one can use on the 91 in SoCal.
     
  16. BrokerDon

    BrokerDon Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2014
    Messages:
    198
    Location:
    Newport Coast, CA
    IMHO our HOV "car pool" lane stickers save us a LOT of time and more importantly frustration driving in O.C. and the Inland Empire.

    Even better establish a separate 91 Express Lanes EV account so you can drive almost anytime for FREE in your Tesla. https://www.91expresslanes.com/faq.asp# This saves us a LOT of time AND a bunch of 91 EXPRE$$ LANE$ expensive tolls in my OC to IE trips. The other benefit of the 91Xlanes over The Toll Roads is the 91Xlanes don't charge a monthly "standby fee".

    Unfortunately The Toll Roads don't have any EV discounts... Probably because the demographics of their customers have more discretionary income.
     
  17. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    I should have a FasTrak transponder with the carpool switch by the time I get there. It is my understanding that this will allow me to use it on the 91. I may not get clean air rebates or access privileges since I do not have my white HOV sticker yet.
     
  18. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    From what I read, for the 110/105 (you bet I am swinging by SpaceX and the Design Studio!) on Sunday and the 91 Express Lane on Monday morning, my lack of sticker will force me to stick to single-occupancy on my FasTrak. Hopefully, planning for two hours to get to SB from Huntington Beach will be enough on Monday morning. Need to meet colleagues at or around 10:30. I will be traveling eastbound. Hope that helps!

    Will start a separate thread for my trip progress reports tomorrow and Monday!
     
  19. e-FTW

    e-FTW New electron smell

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2015
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA

Share This Page