Since the mods saw fit to create a "Road Trips" thread it seems appropriate to include an actual road trip:
Just got back from a long-planned road trip to Oregon, Vancouver Island BC and Yellowstone National Park. Sixteen days and 4752 miles
. The goals of the trip were:
•A routine visit with family in Oregon.
•To visit The Butchart Gardens in Victoria BC, a place I haven't been since I was 12 years old.
•A visit to Tofino, a beach town on the west coast of Vancouver Island and quite different from my longtime home in the rural Colorado mountains. (By the way, I grew up on the beach in Hawai'i, being fifth generation Hawaiian-born.)
•A visit to Yellowstone National Park, for the first time in thirty years (the year after the fires), in part to see how the plants are recovering.
•A chance to "collect" more Supercharger Stations for my list and join the "century club" of Tesla drivers that have Supercharged at 100 different Supercharger Stations.
Some pictures from the trip:
^ Leaving Port Angeles WA on the ferry.
^ I was the second to last "wait list" car to get on board the ferry, which made for a nice picture of my car at the back of the ship's hold.
In Victoria I camped at an RV park just outside of the city. I had a blast driving the curving, narrow roads in the hills around Victoria in the rain: many kilometers of roads with no straight sections nor any level sections at all
, with traffic moving at twice the 30 km/h speed limit. Put my well-honed Colorado mountain driving skills to the test! I got a chance to visit The Butchart Gardens, a goal of the trip. It was raining but they supply umbrellas to visitors, a nice touch. The rain did stop while I was there and the gardens were well worth the visit and cost. A couple of pictures that barely scratch the surface of the gardens:
I spent three nights at Ocean Village Resort on Mackenzie Beach in Tofino BC. The resort had EV charging:
^ The charging included a Clipper Creek J1772 and a Tesla EVSE. This was necessary for me to get my small battery S-60 back to the Nanaimo BC Supercharger Station. (As some here already know, Tesla supplies these charge stations to hotels and other destinations for free — yes, even the Clipper Creek J1772 for all EVs to use.)
^ Mackenzie Beach at Tofino. I lucked out with the weather and had sun my first day and just a few brief rain showers the second day, albeit with grey skies. It was sunny again the morning I left for Vancouver so I took another long walk on the beach before heading back to Nanaimo for the ferry.
^ High tide.
^Low tide — it was quite a change!
I managed to collect some Supercharger Stations in the Vancouver area, including Whistler and Squamish; the latter is a town on a fijord at the base of a glacial cliff with a waterfall and the geology is reminiscent of Yosemite. Very scenic. It took more than 80 minutes to cross the border back to the USA since I don't have a Nexus pass. Of course I chose the wrong line: if you head south toward the border at Vancouver and don't have a pass for the Nexus line, be sure to stay in the left lane — it gets easier access to more border kiosks.
From the border I managed to collect Supercharger Stations in NW Washington. It was weird driving in British Columbia and NW Washington because my car was the only "exotic" license plate I saw. Every other car I saw for five days was from BC or WA. It is completely different at home in Colorado and Utah, where I routinely see plates from many states and Canadian provinces.
On the way to Yellowstone NP I stopped at Snoqualmie Falls in Washington:
Supercharging at Superior MT:
^ This was my 100th different Supercharger Station, making me the 58th member of the "century club" at TMC. I ended up with 110. That's a far cry from the game leader, who has 695 last I checked!
In Yellowstone I had miserable weather, which I suppose helped me reserve a campsite since they had been full a week earlier. Rather than camp in freezing wet weather in a tent I just slept in my warm and dry car. I was at Madison campground in the park which is nicely laid out and has heated rest rooms. The morning I arrived I saw a grizzly and two cubs cross the road right in front of my car a few feet from the campground entrance. Headed toward the campground! I later learned from a campground receptionist that rangers had intercepted the grizzlies and convinced them to go elsewhere. One reason I chose Madison campground, the largest in Yellowstone with 238 spaces, is that I figured I'd be safer from bears in a bigger "herd" of campers!
^ My car will easily hold a full length air mattress for sleeping in the car, something I routinely do at RV parks and highway rest areas. The hatchback makes getting in and out very easy.
Some Yellowstone pictures:
^Bison at Yellowstone. The calves were quite frisky.
^Level 2 charging at Mammoth Hot Springs, just to check it out. There are several L2 charging options in the area according to Plugshare. Most of my charging was at the West Yellowstone Supercharger Station. A reason I chose the Madison campground was that it was closest to West Yellowstone, so I could easily charge up in the morning before exploring the park.
^ Lower Geyser Basin
^ Meadow and bison
^ Bison jam on the road. I ended up stopped for about fifteen minutes before a ranger managed to haze the bison herd off the road, after several unsuccessful tries. Yes, that's fresh snow on the trees. On May 20th. Did I say "miserable weather?"
^ Emerald Spring.
^ Yellowstone Canyon.
^ Lower Yellowstone Falls.
^ Of course, a picture of Old Faithful Geyser, which was running a few minutes early on my visits.
Of interest to the "other EVs" forum at MNL, on this trip I saw my first ever Kia Niro, Jaguar iPace, and Hundai Kona EVs. We don't have them out in the boondocks where I live. I also saw hordes of LEAFs in Victoria BC and Portland OR, no surprise. The Kia Niro I saw at the Centralia WA Supercharger Station:
^ Brand new Kia Niro driver trying to plug-in to a Supercharger stall! After a couple of minutes she realized it wasn't going to work and drove off.
The Jaguar iPace and Hundai Kona I saw in Victoria BC. It was fun to see these rare EVs in person for the first time.
And, in answer to the question of how a solo driver manages to enjoy thousand mile road trips: I listen to audio books!
It is something I've been doing since my ICE driving days and it makes long stretches of road more fun. I do have to turn the audio books off when dealing with traffic in cities because we don't have traffic where I live (or even multi-lane roads) so I have to concentrate on my driving and the other cars.