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The Long Way Round... to the Tesla Gigafactory, a Summer 2016 Tesla Roadtrip

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by AEDennis, Sep 12, 2016.

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  1. AEDennis

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    It looks like Summer 2016 has ended for most, and I have finally gotten around to publishing this year's Long Way Round EV trip to the Gigafactory and back, (two months from the day the trip happened...) So, tomorrow, you can relive our meetup with @MelindaV

    I figured that with the start of National Drive Electric Week and a week after the Labor Day Holiday (in the US), folks are now trying to forget Summer, and I can't have any of that.

    So, hope that you'll join us and enjoy the our 2016 Roadtrip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party known as The Long Way Round!

    Here's the view from the side mirrors of a Model S on a Roadtrip on I-5 in California...

    [​IMG]IMG_20160718_161424 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

    and the view from a nearly empty Supercharger in California.

    [​IMG]IMG_20160718_180538 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

    Subsequent days on this trip will be published on or around 10:00 AM Pacific/1:00 PM Eastern/1800 BST/1900 CET/+1 0300 Sydney/+1 0100 Hong Kong, 2 Months from the day of that summary. I will be updating this thread with links, you can also subscribe on the blog.
     
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    • MelindaV

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      I saw your tweet this morning and just finished reading thru today's post. You do a great job of documenting a long drive in an interesting and animated way :)
       
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      • AEDennis

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        Thanks... Been a busy summer, I had hoped to publish this a month ago, originally, but thought to goad those "back at their desks" into taking a well-deserved break and dream of summer drives... in the middle of National Drive Electric Week! ;):p:D:cool:
         
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        • AEDennis

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          #4 AEDennis, Sep 13, 2016
          Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
          So, it's a Tuesday and September and you're trying to focus on work...

          Take a break, and read up on the next day of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigfactory... Nothing is more fun on the road than taking a Tesla Roadtrip and you know you want to take one, so, when you can't... right now... get some ideas, and virtually join us on Day Two of our trip.


          A day that started with trying out a hotel NEMA 14-50 plug...

          [​IMG]IMG_20160719_073115 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          (interesting that Tesla chose to focus on the RV plug whereas many other EVSE vendors went with the NEMA 6-50 Welder's plug... Makes more sense to use NEMA 14-50 for MOBILE applications, don't you think?)

          Spot some cute BEAR CROSSING signs in California!

          [​IMG]Untitled by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          A reminder that Global Warming threatens that glacier capped mountain in the background...

          [​IMG]IMG_1942 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          and count the Xs that we meet on our journey...

          [​IMG]IMG_20160719_200534 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          More importantly... @MelindaV

          First with the Dutch Brothers Coffee suggestion -

          [​IMG]IMG_20160719_144732 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          and got to our EV Meetup at Portland's Electric Avenue...

          [​IMG]IMG_2016 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

          Day Two was fun and we hoped to get to Portland this evening... on the way to Reno, NV for the Tesla Gigafactory Party... via Vancouver, BC.
           
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          • AEDennis

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            Today's stop for Day 3 of our Long Way Round trip two months ago today is the first day of the EV Roadmap 9 conference in Portland, OR.

            It was located right by Portland's famous Electric Avenue

            [​IMG]IMG_20160720_100330 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

            Lots of cars to test drive

            [​IMG]IMG_20160720_100408 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

            An entertaining V2G demo using Leaf to power Hawaiian Shave Ice setup.

            [​IMG]IMG_20160720_135842 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

            And the Chevy Bolt EV

            [​IMG]IMG_20160720_135909 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

            The conference was a great learning experience and met a few folks whose work I've been following for years.

            Day 3 of our Long Way Round trip was definitely worth it, and we're not even at the Gigafactory Party yet.
             
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            • AEDennis

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              Two months ago, today, we're still in Portland for EV Roadmap 9 on today's installment of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from Southern California via Vancouver, BC.

              We stayed at the Doubletree in Portland, which was a short commute from the conference. Yesterday we took Lyft to the conference, and regrettably the Lyft driver that picked me up was driving a Cadillac Escalade.

              Figured it was better to take an EV to an EV conference, I opted for the trolley. It is an Electric Vehicle...

              [​IMG]IMG_20160721_090751 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              The next best thing to autopilot is to be driven by someone else, I'm pretty sure the conductor's name isn't Otto, but I'd like to imagine that it was.

              [​IMG]IMG_20160721_090852 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              It's impressive what Portland has started and it won't be long that they'll need more Electric Avenues. Talk about redundancy, and that's not even counting the two CS-100 (80 Amp AC) EVSEs that are at the far end of the shot. I'm sure @MelindaV and her fellow Portland-area natives would appreciate that. Not sure what the utility is like across the border into Vancouver, WA, but the PDX area utility is quite EV savvy and friendly.

              [​IMG]IMG_20160721_164936 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              After a successful visit and conference, we rewarded ourselves with a great restaurant in Portland, Lincoln Restaurant.

              [​IMG]IMG_0589 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              With excellent starters

              [​IMG]IMG_20160721_193531 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              and mains (the chef, Jenn Louis, first book is a Pasta book called Pasta by Hand.)

              [​IMG]IMG_20160721_200203 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

              Before we head back on the trail of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from Southern California via Vancouver, BC tomorrow.
               
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              • MelindaV

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                Not so much on the WA side of the border :(.
                I even reached out to my power company (which uses clean energy, most all from hydro from a dam about 40 miles away) and asked if they offered a rebate for installing home EV charging equipment like the utility Puget Sound Energy in Seattle and some in CA, which I provided links to those jurisdictions EV programs. Response I got was something like "no, we like to encourage customers to use less power not more like adding an EV would".
                So they seem to be missing the big picture of what an EV brings to the party... but their rates are $0.08 24/7, so not complaining ;)
                 
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                • AEDennis

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                  That's cheaper than some solar PPA in California.

                  Jealous of your $0.08 rates...
                   
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                  • MelindaV

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                    And that's why SolarCity isn't installing here
                     
                  • chopr147

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                    Great rates! In 2012 Long Island Power Authority gave me over $17,000 for my $45,000 system. Add in the gov't rebates and it was a great deal for me. But, those type of incentives are no longer available, at least from LIPA. And leasing is now trending. (Hate it) The only reason LIPA gave $ at that time was gov't incentives and the power structure was constantly stressed due to usage. Now i'm looking into solar for my upstate lakehouse and after 2 estimates it may not be worth it. Maybe if I was a diehard global warming nut i would pay extra but not going to happen. Rebates are shrinking as the solar prices come down.
                     
                  • AEDennis

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                    #11 AEDennis, Sep 16, 2016
                    Last edited: Sep 17, 2016
                    Today's Long Way Round to the Gigafactory post is for Day 5.

                    Today we make the drive to the Seattle area from Portland. This is a one supercharge trip at Centralia, WA. So, one could be expected to take it easy.

                    But first, a border incursion into Washington State.

                    [​IMG]IMG_2022 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    Even though this is a short-drive, thanks to the awesome @MelindaV, we’re well stocked with Washington goods.

                    [​IMG]IMG_2032 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    And before we supercharged at our only supercharger stop in Centralia, we had some very authentic Mexican food, La Tarasca, about a mile away from the superchargers.

                    [​IMG]IMG_2049 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    And at the supercharger in Centralia, we met with another Californian on a Northbound journey.

                    This time a Signature Model X from the Bay Area.

                    [​IMG]IMG_20160722_132831 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    We hit some traffic in Washington State, but were lucky that their HOV lanes also counted 2+ as a carpool.

                    [​IMG]IMG_2060 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    We found our Washington State twin at Everett, WA in the early evening.

                    [​IMG]IMG_20160722_194713 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr
                    And resorted to our most expensive charge for the trip.

                    [​IMG]IMG_20160723_074913 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                    All in all, a long day of activities and “getting to know” Seattle traffic day on Day 5 of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party.
                     
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                    • AEDennis

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                      We spend Day 6 of our Long Way Round to the Gigafactory Party trip in the Seattle Metro area.

                      The start of our day was interrupted by a faulty J1772 connector at the public charging station at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue.

                      [​IMG]IMG_20160723_074913 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      Though we started the day with interrupted sleep, we had fun “hanging out” in Seattle.

                      We knew we were at an EV experienced city when we started and there were 3 other EVs at the public charger that we used overnight.

                      [​IMG]IMG_20160723_101605 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      It’s one of the first things I associate with Seattle.

                      [​IMG]IMG_2126 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      We saw some of the sights…

                      [​IMG]IMG_20160723_110722 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      And rode the Seattle Great Wheel

                      [​IMG]Untitled by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      And spotted our Model S twin from Arkansas at our hotel for the night.

                      [​IMG]Untitled by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                      It was great to spend Day 6 of our Long Way Round to the Gigafactory Party visiting our niece in the Seattle Metro area.

                      Tomorrow’s post will be our drive to cross the border and finally visit Vancouver, BC.
                       
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                      • AEDennis

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                        Day 7 of the Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from two months ago is a travel day... This time with a border incursion into Canada... Ok, maybe not a border incursion, but a visit to our neighbors to the North.

                        One supercharger stop from Seattle to Canada at Burlington, WA.

                        [​IMG]IMG_0807.JPG by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        We were reminded not to pick up any hitch-hikers along the way.

                        [​IMG]IMG_2249 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        We saw a cool Solar Barn... Heard of Solar Farms, I guess that's where you shelter your Solar Panels at Solar Farms... (at the Solar Barn.)

                        [​IMG]IMG_2248 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        We spent some time at the border...

                        [​IMG]IMG_2252 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        [​IMG]IMG_2253 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        Switched from miles to kilometers...

                        [​IMG]IMG_20160724_130525 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        Crossed the border.

                        [​IMG]IMG_2259 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        and the realization that we're really not on US roads...

                        [​IMG]IMG_2277 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        Not really into having to do the math on how fast I'm going, so glad that there is a "switch" on the Model S. Glad that we're not driving the Roadster on this drive as the 1.5 speedometer is fixed on miles and doesn't have the hash marks for kilometers.

                        Yes...

                        I did drive a 100! (kph not mph that is...)

                        [​IMG]IMG_2279 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                        We're glad to make the intermediate goal on Day 7 of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory...


                        Day 8 will be published tomorrow, around the same time. (10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern/1600BST/1700CET/UTC)
                         
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                        • AEDennis

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                          #14 AEDennis, Sep 19, 2016
                          Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
                          Milestone reached on Day 8 of our Long Way Round to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from two months ago. Today's activities are to visit our family in Vancouver, BC.

                          We saw a few other EVs on our drive around Vancouver...


                          [​IMG]IMG_2299 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          One was on purpose...

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160725_110604 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          We visited the Electra Meccanica storefront hoping to get a glimpse of the prototype Solo.

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160725_112407 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          Had some minor issues, so we visited the Tesla Service Center Plus in downtown Vancouver.

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160725_154126 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          Saw the Olympic Torch for the Winter Olympics.

                          [​IMG]IMG_2326 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          And provided a warning and entry for the Tesla Destination Charger at the Hilton Metrotown...

                          [​IMG]IMG_0835 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          Low ceilings for Model X and Model S power trunks.

                          All in all, a good trip on Day 8 of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from 2 months ago.
                           
                        • AEDennis

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                          As we were leaving our hotel on Day 9 of our Long Way Round trip to the Tesla Gigafactory Party from our destination charger hotel at Hilton Vancouver Metrotown, the next guest is in the driveway with a nice, shiny, red Model S...

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160726_092436 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          One last bridge crossing Vancouver, at least on this trip.

                          [​IMG]IMG_2348 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          We spot a famous Bug on our drive...

                          [​IMG]IMG_2359 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          The first rest stop across the border into Washington had some Level 2 chargers sponsored by Adopt A Charger in the Rest Area.

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160726_104321 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          We met up with some fellow EV folks on our drive and got to check out their Model X.

                          [​IMG]IMG_20160726_143542 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          Took some routes that were not freeways...

                          [​IMG]IMG_2390 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          Apparently Darth Vader lives in Washington State.

                          [​IMG]IMG_2404 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                          We're a few days from reaching the Gigafactory on Day 9 of our Long Way Round trip this Summer.

                          Day 10 will be published tomorrow, around the same time. (10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern/1600BST/1700CET/UTC)
                           
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                          • TrevP

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                            Always awesome to see your travel reports @AEDennis ! Thanks for sharing them here :)
                             
                          • AEDennis

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                            Thanks @TrevP

                            One of these days we'll be in ON and we can do a meetup there!

                            In the meantime, I'm glad your enjoying it.
                             
                          • MelindaV

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                            @AEDennis - my sister and I went up to Seattle for a Mariners game Sunday and had dinner on the way home at the Mexican restaurant you went to in Centralia! Would never have considered it if you hadn't included it in your post, and it was great (even the carrots)!
                             
                          • AEDennis

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                            Awesome. Glad you were able to experience La Tarasca.
                             
                          • AEDennis

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                            #20 AEDennis, Sep 21, 2016
                            Last edited: Sep 21, 2016
                            After spending the evening overnight at a Destination Charger that was not ideally installed on Day 9.

                            [​IMG]Untitled by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            Day 10 of our Long Way Round Trip to the Tesla Gigafactory party starts in Springfield/Eugene, OR. We chose to stay at the Hilton Garden Inn at Springfield, OR because it was a Tesla Destination charger. It also happens to be 1/2 a mile away from the Supercharger in the area (at the Holiday Inn.)

                            We supercharged 1/2 a mile away and it became the start of a TMC Connect session. I met up with a couple of guys on their way to Reno for TMC Connect as well.

                            [​IMG]IMG_2437 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            With three of us heading the same way, I figured to encounter a few full superchargers, especially at Grants Pass, where there are only four stalls. Tesla will probably need to add to this location or install new locations around here by the time the Model 3 is delivered.

                            [​IMG]IMG_20160727_141855 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            Thanks to @MelindaV for introducing us to Dutch Bros. Coffee...

                            Spotted some Dutch Love.

                            [​IMG]IMG_2479 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            That's another way to send an EV over long distances. (looks like it's either sold or being transferred to another dealership to sell)

                            [​IMG]IMG_2490 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            Didn't spot one of our traveling companions, but it looks like another full supercharger at Mount Shasta.

                            [​IMG]IMG_20160727_173718 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            We apparently got to our destination charger at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento a few months TOO early.

                            Almost all of the Level 2s were installed, but not operating at the time we stopped by.

                            [​IMG]IMG_20160727_233521 by Dennis Pascual, on Flickr

                            So, after a day of driving on this Day 10 of our Long Way Round Trip this summer, we're in a great big hotel with a lot of un-powered Level 2 chargers and lucky enough to find the one charger that has power to it.

                            Day 11 will be published tomorrow, around the same time. (10AM Pacific/1PM Eastern/1600BST/1700CET/UTC)
                             
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