Thursday, April 13, 2017

Day 18 - Why is there no charger in Wilmington?

Most days driving a Tesla is a real treat.  Today was not one of those days.  Dennis had told me that it was 4-5 hours to Kitty Hawk.  It looked like a nice run up the coast with just Wilmington NC as the lone city on the route.  I was sloppy in not really checking the route however and paid dearly for it but not until I had a good breakfast and lunch at my host’s house.  On top of that Kathy packed me a bag of food and a water bottle to keep me going on the ride.  Little did we know how they would help as the ride turned out to be a long one. 

My first inkling of trouble was when I pulled into the Myrtle Beach charger at about 1:00 and put in the Kitty Hawk address I was heading for, something I should have done the night before.  I turns out that the run was 259 miles which is 19 miles further than the car can be stretched to even if the battery is full.  What this meant then was not a nice run along the coast but rather a 200 mile detour inland to have a sufficient charge to get there.  I kicked myself for any number of mistakes even that of not spending the extra 10K to get the bigger battery in the car which would have given me a 280 mile range.  This meant yet another long driving day and a late arrival at the next place.  Compounding the problem was construction which created a long backup on I-40. 

In any case my host for the night was like everyone else very accommodating and not only stayed up even though she had to be at work at 6am but she and I had sandwiches together when I finally arrived.  Had I checked earlier the ride would have been just as long but at least I would have felt less guilty had I left South Carolina after breakfast.  Having had Gretchen as an employee for years I knew she was too nice for her own good and she proved me right but just like when she went out of her way at work I do appreciate it.

Not much to report about the ride during which I had plenty of time to be really pissed off at myself.  In addition I created myself a new problem as once again I have insufficient charge to make it to the next charging station.  You would think I would learn.  As there is no quick way to charge here I am going to not do the rest of the trip tomorrow but rather get the charge straightened out and spend a day exploring the Outer Banks.

I did find Waldo though


Myrtle Beach SC –This is located at a very, very  large mall which I was able to walk around a bit while I charged the car.

Warsaw NC – This was in back of a Quality Inn.  The men’s room was out of order and it looked death defying to cross the street to places that had both food and bathrooms.  Luckily I am a male and the huge fenced enclosure for the supercharger transformers faced the woods.

Rocky Mount NC – This was a very short stop as I was going to have to stop at the next supercharger in order to have a reasonable amount of charge when I arrived even though the car which is usually quite conservative was saying, “Just go for it!”

Plymouth, NC – This charger was also very fast.  The big problem I had was balancing my arrival time and the amount of charge I would need to get to the superchargers in Norfolk.  I erred on the side of the arrival time and as noted above did not judge correctly.   About 15 more minutes of charging would have done it I think but then again I got it wrong the first time too.

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