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Trip Report: Los Angeles - Vancouver roundtrip

Discussion in 'Model S' started by MikeC, Oct 2, 2013.

  1. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

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    I’ve been wanting to do this trip ever since I got my car back in February, but have been waiting for the Supercharger network to be built out some more. After the WA chargers debuted, I figured it was time, even though I knew it would be painful making it through northern California and Oregon. Luckily, Woodburn and Fremont opened in the interim. For the record, I have a 85kWh with a single charger only.

    Charging stops

    Northbound
    Tejon Ranch, Harris Ranch, Gilroy, Fremont Superchargers ->
    Beachcomber Motel in Fort Bragg, CA (J1772; overnight) ->
    Benbow Inn (14-50, 2 hours) ->
    Arcata Fire Department (14-50, 5 hours) ->
    7 Feathers Casino (J1772, overnight) ->
    Woodburn, Centralia, Burlington Superchargers->
    Fairmont Hotel Vancouver (J1772, overnight)

    Southbound
    Burlington, Centralia, Woodburn Superchargers ->
    7 Feathers RV Park (14-50, 6 hours) ->
    Ashland Texaco (J1772, 2 hours) ->
    Premiere RV Resort in Redding, CA (14-50, 4 hours) ->
    Folsom, Harris Ranch, Tejon Ranch Superchargers

    Final stats
    2821.5 miles, 900.0 kWh (exactly!), 319 Wh/mi

    Details
    As expected, Supercharging was a breeze. The only hiccup was at Fremont, where 1 of the 4 stalls was broken and 2 others were giving a rate of ~100 mi/hr (why are there only 4 stalls in Fremont? Can’t use permitting as an excuse here.) Also as expected, other forms of charging suck.

    I initially chose Beachcomber Motel because I was planning to take the 101 up using Atascadero or Buellton. Since I was pressed for time, I ended up deciding to take the 5 up instead - plus Fremont had just opened. I would not recommend detouring to the coast from the 5 if time is a concern, because it takes a lot of windy mountain roads to get from the 5 to the coast. The scenery is nice, but I did it mostly at night. Beachcomber was a nice place, they reserved the charger for me but not the parking space next to it, so I had to park in the middle of the lot and block a car to charge (picture below).

    IMG_6002.JPG

    Benbow Inn is a beautiful hotel with a nice restaurant, it was a great place to top off.

    IMG_6004.jpg

    Arcata FD was a good place to charge - except that I initially put “Arcata Fire Station” into the nav and it took me to the Arcata Mad River Fire Station. I walked around the building a few times until the nice firefighters explained that I had to go to the main Fire Department building.

    IMG_6017.JPG

    I was really happy with 7 Feathers – I used the J1772 on the way up overnight but used the RV park on the way back for a faster charge. Nice, cheap rooms plus blackjack is always a good way to kill charging time.

    The Fairmont Vancouver has convenient valet charging right in front of the entrance and parking for EVs is free, too. The hotel room seemed pretty expensive, though.

    On the way back down, used the Texaco in Ashland and Premiere RV Park in Redding.

    Comments
    I want to thank Zextraterrestrial for his advice in navigating Humboldt (the Prairie Creek bypass tip was excellent). On the way back, I made it from Seattle to Los Angeles in just over 36 hours. I thoroughly enjoyed the trip, but would not do it again without Superchargers (one slow charge overnight would be okay, too.) Once they start building the Superchargers to the east, I will start planning my next road trip to Florida!

    IMG_6091.jpg
    Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC
     
  2. SFOTurtle

    SFOTurtle Active Member

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    Amazing. You mean, you made it all the way up to BC and back without incident, didn't need to stop at a gas station once, zero tailpipe emissions, and your car didn't catch on fire! How is that possible? I would have assumed your car would have bricked somewhere and then caught on fire, or is it the other way around? These MS are really lousy pieces of technology.

    Oh, thanks for the trip report, I enjoyed reading it. Appreciate the tips for Nor Cal although I probably will wait until the Oregon SCs are rolled out before attempting to drive that far north.
     
  3. Tacket

    Tacket Member

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    Were you driving through Stanley Park this past weekend by chance (09/28th) at around 1:30pm (during the freak rain storm)?
     
  4. AlisoJames

    AlisoJames Member

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    Thanks for the trip report. We did Orange County to San Francisco using the 101 SC's this summer and are planning to go to Vancouver next summer when the SC network is more built up. We did about 1300 miles in 10 days and had a great time. I am originally from Canada and Vancouver is one of my favorite cities. I am looking forward to taking a pic of my Model S in Stanley Park next summer. Thanks for blazing the trail!
     
  5. DIL

    DIL Member

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    awesome travelogue!
     
  6. texex91

    texex91 Banned

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    Very cool! Certainly shows it can be done without too much hassle.

    Thanks for sharing and the pics!
     
  7. swaltner

    swaltner Member

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    Blackjack while charging... That can really mess up the cost-benefit of "free charging"! :)
     
  8. Zextraterrestrial

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    #8 Zextraterrestrial, Oct 3, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2013
    While you were in Arcata I stopped by so my car could give yours a kiss. She was happy to see a grey S!
    Looking at the sun shadows I wasn't there that long after you arrived.

    photo.JPG

    curious what your tint is. I like the way it is all tinted.
     
  9. MikeC

    MikeC Active Member

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    Thanks for the kind words, everyone.

    I did drive through Washington state, but amazingly managed to dodge all the "debris" they seem to have on the roads over there.

    Yep, I was there on Saturday the 28th during the rain, I drove through in the morning and then again in the afternoon. Were you there?

    Actually, I came out of it up $10 :)

    I had no idea you had been there, too funny! I was probably walking around the city, it would have been cool to meet you in person. Btw, the firefighters at the Mad River station mentioned that there was "a guy who always used to be parked there" in a car that looked similar to mine, I'm guessing they were talking about you. Not sure if I told you, but your early posts helped me to choose grey. The tint is 3M Crystalline 40 all around with 70 on the windshield.
     
  10. Zextraterrestrial

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    I used to park there and play disc golf but now I feel bad doing it since there are so many S' on the west coast + there are some 'old timers' with conversion beetles and rabbits and quite a few Leaves in the area. I know they all really need the charge more than I do.
    When I first got my car in December I showed some of the firefighters where the cable is to cut just in case they ever see an S in a bad situation

    I like the 70 on the front, might need to add that someday
    Grey is sweet. Good choice
     
  11. Puyallup Bill

    Puyallup Bill Member

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    Very nice report; thank you. I especially liked the synopsis of charging spots as the lead in. I have copied that, as I am planning a trip to Visalia via Harris Ranch, but not for several months. Perhaps then there will be some Superchargers in northern CA.
     
  12. Tacket

    Tacket Member

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    Yeah, I was the black Model S heading north (on my way to Horseshoe bay). You were the only other Tesla I saw in Vancouver that weekend (was out of town from Seattle).
     

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