I-5 Charging Station Review - 2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test
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2013 Tesla Model S Long-Term Road Test

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2013 Tesla Model S: I-5 Charging Station Review

January 30, 2014

2013 Tesla Model S

So I've been meaning to write this up for awhile: a quick review of each of the Supercharger stations we stopped off at to charge our 2013 Tesla Model S during a holiday road trip from L.A. to Corvallis, Oregon.

Editor Dan Edmunds pretty much did the same run JayKav and I did back in November but I figured I'd focus more on what exactly there is to do at these stations while you're waiting for your car to charge.

Unsurprisingly, there's not much to do in the middle of nowhere, which is where most of these superchargers are located. And surprisingly, you'd think Tesla would partner up with affluent brands to appeal to the typical Tesla customer. But nope. Or maybe just not yet. Anyway, here's what you can do at each stop.

We had Mya the dog with us so she welcomed these frequent stops. And given the half hour to 45 minutes it was the perfect opportunity to have her stretch her legs and go potty.

By the way, since Tesla's Supercharger map isn't interactive, I made my own Google Maps of where we stopped.

Lebec: In terms of food, this has something for everyone. We liked Chipotle for those tasty bowls, Starbucks for a coffee or if you want to go for a walk, there's the In N Out across Laval Road. Since we brought Mya the dog with us, she loved the walk. There's also a huge open field north of Laval Road for playing fetch.

2013 Tesla Model S

Harris Ranch: Since this Supercharger is located in the parking lot of the Harris Ranch, all there really is to do is peruse the little gift store inside. There's a bunch of food gifts like fancy jars of jam, nuts, etc. There's also a bar and a restaurant. But we just grabbed a cup of coffee and enjoyed the quiet garden in the back.

2013 Tesla Model S

Folsom: This Supercharger station was located in the Folsom Premium Outlet parking lot near a McDonald's. Nothing really "premium" about the stores there. But you can kill time window shopping. If you like McDonald's then you're in luck. But if you'd rather have something like Starbucks, it's a 1.2-mile walk along Folsom Boulevard. Mya loved that walk of course. We even came across wildlife! Some Canada geese just tooling about.

Corning: Really the only thing here is Starbucks. You can have coffee and use their free WiFi. When we drove up, there was a Tesla owner passing the time sitting in his car. He came out to talk to us once we plugged in. While he and JayKav chatted, I played fetch with Mya in the nearby dirt lot.

Mt. Shasta: This was my favorite Supercharger stop. There's a lovely stream past the station where again we played fetch with Mya and had her run around. The Tree House Restaurant & Bar, where the Supercharger is located, didn't really have anything we were interested in eating so we walked to Mt. Shasta Boulevard where there were more restaurant options. Yaks Koffee Shop & Cafe has the biggest breakfast burrito I've ever seen as well as a fancy coffee drink menu with Butter Toffee Lattes and Coconut Cream Mochas, if that's your thing.

2013 Tesla Model S

Grants Pass: Ohhh, Grants Pass. This is the sitting-in-your-car stop. Nothing really to see here unless you want to take a stroll to look at a giant Caveman statue. There's a McDonald's across the street.

Eugene: This was my second favorite stop because it's within walking distance of the Hop Valley Brewing Co. Your road trip companion can enjoy a flight of beer here, but I recommend their IPA, which was pretty decent. For food they have hearty entrees like gorgonzola stuffed porkchops and an Alehouse steak. If you don't mind a walk and want some coffee, surprise, there's a Starbucks just 0.3 mile away.

Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor


Comments

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    Here in the northeast, we are blessed with mostly-independent and local-chain eateries and drinkeries and coffee shops. I am not into chains at all, and when I travel I like to sample the local specialties and meet the local folks...that's one of the reasons I like to drive when I travel. Unfortunately traveling in the Tesla is not going to be conducive to this kind of soaking-up-the-local-flavor, unless you don't mind making one stop to hit the Supercharger and another stop to hit an interesting restaurant or the local meeting place. Just a lot easier with an ICE to get away from the superslab and find the kinds of people and places that prove that American is still more than just one big strip mall. And the alternative, Tesla teaming up with "affluent brands" at these middle-of-nowhere SC locations, is going to CREATE strip malls - more sprawl. Lots of Tesla's highly-educated, affluent owner base is into small-footprint, tread lightly, buy-local, higher population densities/new urbanism...so it's tough to see how the whole SC experience gells with these folks.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    Here in the northeast, we are blessed with mostly-independent and local-chain eateries and drinkeries and coffee shops. I am not into chains at all, and when I travel I like to sample the local specialties and meet the local folks...that's one of the reasons I like to drive when I travel. Unfortunately traveling in the Tesla is not going to be conducive to this kind of soaking-up-the-local-flavor, unless you don't mind making one stop to hit the Supercharger and another stop to hit an interesting restaurant or the local meeting place. Just a lot easier with an ICE to get away from the superslab and find the kinds of people and places that prove that American is still more than just one big strip mall. And the alternative, Tesla teaming up with "affluent brands" at these middle-of-nowhere SC locations, is going to CREATE strip malls - more sprawl. Lots of Tesla's highly-educated, affluent owner base is into small-footprint, tread lightly, buy-local, higher population densities/new urbanism...so it's tough to see how the whole SC experience gells with these folks.

  • paco3791 paco3791 Posts:

    This, http://www.teslawiki.net/supercharger/, is a great interactive map for the SuperChargers next time your planning a trip or just want to get up to date on where new Chargers are going in.

  • paco3791 paco3791 Posts:

    This, http://www.teslawiki.net/supercharger/, is a great interactive map for the SuperChargers next time your planning a trip or just want to get up to date on where new Chargers are going in.

  • cbrandi_ cbrandi_ Posts:

    So what if you don't have a dog to walk. Out of the entire trip how much time was spent recharging the car? This doesn't sound like a car for those who have miles to cover and not a lot of time.

  • cbrandi_ cbrandi_ Posts:

    So what if you don't have a dog to walk. Out of the entire trip how much time was spent recharging the car? This doesn't sound like a car for those who have miles to cover and not a lot of time.

  • cbrandi_ cbrandi_ Posts:

    If it takes 15 hours to drive that trip, you spent approximately an additional 3 hours recharging, or a 20% additional travel time, for a total of 18 hours.

  • cbrandi_ cbrandi_ Posts:

    If it takes 15 hours to drive that trip, you spent approximately an additional 3 hours recharging, or a 20% additional travel time, for a total of 18 hours.

  • djwdjw djwdjw Posts:

    Sounds a bit like a first world problem. Take a book :)

  • djwdjw djwdjw Posts:

    Sounds a bit like a first world problem. Take a book :)

  • hybris hybris Posts:

    +1 cbrandi the Tesla is a car for those who don't go far or don't have time limits. Otherwise the VW TDI or really any full size sedan or coupe would be a better choice for trips like these.------------------ Now of course once the battery tech gets bette

  • hybris hybris Posts:

    +1 cbrandi the Tesla is a car for those who don't go far or don't have time limits. Otherwise the VW TDI or really any full size sedan or coupe would be a better choice for trips like these.------------------ Now of course once the battery tech gets bette

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