How to keep your electric car going on road trips

Q: The open road is ready for fully electric cars. We recently took a trip to San Diego and Bellingham, Washington, driving a Ford Mustang Mach-e, covering essentially the entire West Coast. At least 50 percent of our driving on these trips was NOT on Interstate 5.

The trip to San Diego was a test drive for the planned trip to Bellingham. It was so easy to find charging stations that we headed back up the east side of the Sierra, north on I-395 and over Carson Pass, adding an extra 500 miles to our trip.

On the drive to Bellingham we meandered up the east side of the Cascades with an unplanned detour through Crater Lake National Park and Rainier National Park.

Kim Wickol, Palo Alto

A: How did you do this?

Q: The Plugshare app helped us locate chargers along the routes we traveled, and a membership with Electrify America guided us to the fastest ones. While charging, we ate lunch, biked, and chatted with other people charging their cars, comparing notes on our trips, chargers, and cars. The Mach-e navigation system will automatically locate loaders and provide directions.

kim wisckol

A: Anything else?

Q: A couple of observations: the number of non-Tesla chargers is growing rapidly, but there are still opportunities. Hotels and motels could easily install Level 2 chargers for their guests to use overnight (they don’t need the super fast Level 3 ones) and not just one or two, but many! There were often a dozen or more electric cars in the motels we stayed at. Same for national and state parks. We would have liked to plug in the car while we hiked Crater Lake.

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