It's late January in upstate New York: 8 degrees F, with cloudy, light snow drifting down. The long-range forecast predicts non-stop sub-freezing temperatures for the next eight days.
I need to get the hell out of here. Time for a road trip.
MORE: Tesla Superchargers Now Opening Fast, Cross-Country Route Close (actually, it's now open)
Until recently, that would have been a bit of a problem for my 2013 Tesla Model S. The network of Superchargers, the proprietary DC fast-charging stations installed by Tesla Motors for its owners' exclusive use, has been sparse here in the Northeast.
But in the last week or two, new Superchargers have been sprouting up all over the country. Five new chargers in the last two weeks have completed the long-awaited coast-to-coast Supercharger corridor, to great acclaim from Model S owners.
2013 Tesla Model S in winter, Hudson Valley, NY [photo: David Noland]
With somewhat less fanfare, the East Coast Boston-to-Miami Supercharger route has also been completed.
With my new 85-kWh battery--recently upgraded from a 60-kWh--both routes are now within reach of my home in New York's Hudson Valley.
At first, I considered doing an epic coast-to-coast journey. By starting a day or so after the network was completed, I figured I might have a shot at making the epochal first all-Supercharger transcontinental crossing, thereby trumping Elon Musk himself, who'd promised to inaugurate the route with his five kids.
But a gutsy Model S owner ( Internet handle "myfastlady") beat me to the punch.
With exquisite timing and bravado, he and his adult daughter started from New York even before the last cross-country Supercharger in Kingman, Arizona, was completed.
That station went live before he reached it, while the two were fighting winter storms and subzero temperatures through Minnesota and South Dakota.
The duo completed their journey this weekend; I congratulate them on an inspiring effort.
For me, without the cachet of being first, the allure of a grueling cross-country getaway dimmed. What would be the point of abandoning 8 degrees in New York for 8 below along I-90?
Suddenly, the Florida Supercharger route looked a lot more promising: Warmer. And shorter.
I have a couple of friends in the state to visit. And I haven't yet heard of anyone else making the New York-to-Florida Supercharger run: Perhaps I may be able to claim that modest accolade.
Florida, here I come.
I started yesterday afternoon, and spent my first night at a motel very close to the first Supercharger stop, in Newark, Delaware. New Jersey.
I'll keep you posted with daily reports and a photo or two from along the route.