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2016 Tesla Model X P90DL
Santa Rosa,NM to Flagstaff,AZ
Day 15 - Saturday, June 11, 2016

These reports and photos are of a road trip from Anaheim, California, to the 2nd Annual Midwest Tesla Gathering in St. Louis, Missouri. My wife and I are doing this trip in our new red 2016 Tesla Model X P90DL. This particular report is of Day 15, the segment from Santa Rosa, New Mexico, to Flagstaff, Arizona.

Note: This report is a rough draft. I have not yet done a spell check or final edits. Since we are driving this road trip right now, devoting time to driving takes priority. As I get time at our stays along the way I'll make final edits and spelling corrections. But for now, please pardon any errors.

There are many more photos for this day of Tesla travel than could be included in the body of this report. To see ALL of the photos that were taken on this day, click here for the slide show!

Click on any photo on this page for a larger image.

On Saturday morning we departed Santa Rosa around 7:30 AM, about 90 minutes earlier than we had originally planned. Since I have an interest in trains and have been managing the TrainWeb.com website for about 20 years, I can't help but notice anything that is train related. Below you can see a photo of a Sperry Rand railroad work vehicle that was in the parking lot of the hotel.


The Hampton Inn in Santa Rosa, New Mexico, with a
Sperry Rand railroad work vehicle in the parking lot.


Departed the Hampton Inn in Santa Rosa, New Mexico, at 7:24 AM
with 246 miles of charge remaining on the battery.


Pretty flat scenery in this part of New Mexico.


I-40 route from Santa Rosa to Albuquerque, New Mexico.

I noticed yesterday that the Tesla had no cellular internet connection. Without internet, the Tesla was not able to update the GPS map details as you can see in the above photo. It displayed the details from the prior update, but on the left of the screen you can see it was not able to download additional details of the new area we were driving into. At first, I thought we were just in a remote area not covered by the Tesla cellular carrier. But once we got to Albuquerque, I realized that it was not possible that Albuquerque would not be covered. I did a reboot of the Tesla and noticed that the Tesla display status bar now displayed that the cellular internet service reception was now restored! The GPS map details updated properly and internet service was restored to the display screen. I'll report this oddity when I take our Model X in for service next Friday.


Scenery from Santa Rosa to Albuquerque, New Mexico, heading west on I-40.


Arrived Tesla Supercharger in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at 9:05 PM
with 105 miles of charge remaining on the battery.



Albuquerque Tesla Supercharger.

Another location where you can just drive your Tesla forward into the charging spaces which also makes it easier to charge without unhitching if you are towing a trailer, or even just carrying a bike rack.

Left photo above: maybe someone decided to try to build a balanced rock tower while waiting for their Tesla to charge? Right photo above: Applebee's just a few feet from the Tesla Superchargers. Wanting a coffee to go, I went into the Applebee's. There was a gal at the front door, but she didn't look like a hostess. She asked if she could help me, which seemed like an odd thing to ask. I was expecting her to ask how many people were in my party so she could seat us. I asked if I could get two cups of coffee to go. Then she asked me: "Would you like pancakes?" I was totally mystified. Then she explained that Applebee's was actually closed and doesn't open until 11 AM. But, they were having a special pancake breakfast to raise funds for the local Girl Scout Troops. So, all they were having until 11 AM was a sit down pancake breakfast. I thanked her for her explanation and left. They probably had coffee at the nearby hotel, but I decided to wait until our next charging stop to get some coffee.


Departed Albuquerque Tesla Supercharger at 9:44 PM
with 224 miles of charge on the battery.


Scenery heading west on I-40 from Albuquerque to Gallup, New Mexico.


Charge Port Open alert on the dashboard screen.

While driving an alert suddenly popped up on the Tesla display saying that the charge port is open. But by looking at the driver side mirror, I could see that the charge port was closed. It is possible to see the charge port cover in the mirror when it is open. It was good that it was not really open as the cover could probably be damaged by driving with it open. It opens in a direction such that it becomes like a sail in the wind and might be able to be damaged with high speed winds from driving blowing against it. This is something that maybe Tesla should take into consideration. If the cover opened in the other direction, the fast moving airflow would tend to push the charge port closed rather than pushing to snap it in the wrong direction and possibly damaging the cover.

For the rest of the trip the Tesla would report most of the time that the charge port was open. Fortunately the Tesla works and drives just fine even when this alert is on. Whenever I departed a charging station I had difficulty closing the charging port. When I'd close it, it would automatically open itself back up. It would take me a few tries to get it to stay closed. There is a button on the Tesla screen that will close the charge port from inside the vehicle, but that button no longer seemed to be working. This is another problem I'll have to report when I take the vehicle in for service on Friday.

(Notice that the Tesla indicates that the Speed Limit on this section of road was 75 MPH. I usually have the Tesla Cruise Control set to drive at the speed limit "+4" but will often driver slower based on traffic, weather and road conditions.)


More I-40 scenery from Albuquerque to Gallup, New Mexico.


Arrived Tesla Supercharger in Gallup, New Mexico, at 11:46 AM
with 37 miles of charge remaining on the battery.


This is an interesting arrangment of Tesla Superchargers! There are 4 Superchargers arranged into 2 rows of 2 placed back to back. One could charge a Tesla towing a trailer without unhitching, but only if there was no other Tesla charging at the 2 charging spaces on the side of pairs that is furthest from the entrance to the parking lot.

The Hampton Inn hotel.

How friendly of this hotel! The sign says: Welcome Tesla, Free-Wfi- & Hot Breakfast. We used the restrooms, the free WiFi, and made ourselves some coffee. If we drive out this way again, I'd be inspired to make this hotel one of our overnight stops.


Departed Gallup Tesla Supercharger at 12:53 PM
with 163 miles of charge on the battery.


Photos of BNSF freight trains on the tracks
that parallel I-40 between Gallup and Holbrook.


I-40 scenery heading west from Gallup, New Mexico, to Holbrook, Arizona.


Another Charge Port Open warning.
The charge port was not actually open.


More scenery on I-40 between Gallup, New Mexico, and Holbrook, Arizona.

Forgot to mark the remaining charge on the battery when we arrived in Holbrook, Arizona, but from the date stamp on the photos I know that we arrived in Holbrook about 12:32 PM.


Non-Tesla vehicle taking up 2 Supercharger spaces.
There were plenty of non-charging spaces available.

Maybe it is just me, but I avoid parking spaces that are marked for a particular purpose unless I fall into the category for which the space is marked. This not only applies to Disabled Parking Spaces, but also to restaurant "To Go" spaces, taxi parking spaces, and even spaces reserved for the employee of the month, especially if there are other available parking spaces nearby. Why do some people feel they can park anwhere, even across multiple spaces, when that may unnecessarily inconvenience others?


Holbrook Tesla Supercharger is in
a Burger King parking lot.


Departed Holbrook, Arizona, Tesla Supercharger at 1:03 PM
with 188 miles of charge on the battery.


Scenery on I-40 between Holbrook and Flagstaff, Arizona.


Arrived Tesla Supercharger in Flagstaff, Arizona, at 2:26 PM
with 41 miles of charge remaining on the battery.


Tesla Supercharger in Flagstaff, Arizona.

If you were towing a trailer, it would be very difficult to charges at the Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger without unhitching the trailer. The charging parking spaces appear to have been carved out of the surrouding rock face. With the charging equipment next to the charging spot on one end and a curb and driveway on the other end, it would be difficult to keep a trailer hitched to a Tesla while charging. Even if you could angle into a charging spot, the trailer would block all the charging spots and might even be in the way of other vehicles entering and leaving the parking lot. The only option might be to unhitch before charging at this location.


Left: Tesla Superchargers in lower hotel parking lot.
Right: Driveway is on left down to lower hotel parking lot.


Left: Our Tesla Model X at Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger in lower parking lot.
Right: Upper parking lot of Courtyard by Marriott hotel.

The Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger was a bit difficult to locate at first. It is located in the lower level parking lot at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel. After driving up the hill to the hotel, one has to take the first left down to the lower parking lot. At first I thought I was in the wrong place but spotted the Tesla Supercharging stations out of the corner of my eye in the lower parking lot as I was about to drive out the hotel exit.


Pedestrian walkway from street level up to the Courtyard Marriott.

We decided to have lunch at the nearby Olive Garden and walked down the driveway to exit the hotel and Tesla Supercharger area. While walking to the restaurant we noticed a pedestrian walkway up to the hotel. On our way back from lunch we walked back to the hotel via the walkway. However, the driveway may have been a shorter way to get back to the lower hotel parking lot where the Tesla Superchargers are located. When we got to the top of the walkway we found ourselves on the opposite side of the hotel in the upper parking lot furthest from the Tesla Superchargers.


Olive Garden restaurant near Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger.


Wine & Beer Event at Olive Garden.


View of shopping center across the street
from Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger.

There is a shopping center across the street from the hotel which we did not explore. There werw probably a number of restaurants in that shopping center.


Departed Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger at 3:40 PM
with 241 miles of charge on the battery.


View driving to the The Days Inn hotel in Flagstaff.


Arrived at The Days Inn in Flagstaff at 3:55 PM
with 232 miles of charge remaining on the battery.

For some reason the rates at all the hotels in Flagstaff were much higher on this particular Saturday. We stayed at The Days Inn as it was the only hotel that I could find in Flagstaff with reasonable reviews and reasonable rates for this particular day. The normal rates for this hotel are $67 per night but was closer to $150 on the night we stayed. Other hotels in Flagstaff that normall have rates around $130 to $150 per night were going for $200 to $350 per night on this particular day.



The State Bar in Downtown Flagstaff, Arizona.

Later on Saturday evening we went into Downtown Flagstaff, explored a few stores, and then went into The State Bar for some brews and live entertainment.


Arrived back at Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger at 10:28 PM
with 223 miles of charge remaining on the battery.

The Tesla had plenty of charge on the battery, but our first segment in the morning would be a 147 mile drive so we wanted to have a bit more of a safety margin. It always takes longer to top off an almost full battery than to charge up an empty battery. It took us about 20 minutes to add another 22 miles of charge to the battery.


A white Tesla Model X parked near the Flagstaff Supercharger.


Departed Flagstaff Tesla Supercharger at 10:52 PM
with 245 miles of charge on the battery.

We headed back to The Days Inn for the night to be ready to emback on the final segment of our trip back to our vacation house in Anaheim, California.

Click on any photo on this page for a larger image.

There are many more photos for this day of Tesla travel than could be included in the body of this report. To see ALL of the photos that were taken on this day, click here for the slide show!

Note: This report is a rough draft. I have not yet done a spell check or final edits. Since we are driving this road trip right now, devoting time to driving takes priority. As I get time at our stays along the way I'll make final edits and spelling corrections. But for now, please pardon any errors.

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Why this ad?



















Previously Featured Stories  Slideshows  My Tesla Story  My Wish List  Facebook  Twitter  Links  About Us  Contact Us 
 Superchargers         Racing Videos      Reports from:  Steve Grande   Carl Morrison      This is a fan site not affiliated or endorsed by Tesla Motors.
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