September 20, 2017: Pismo Beach
Exploring the Supercharger map leads to a perfect getaway at the edge of the Pacific Ocean.
2017 has been a stressful year, more so than the previous 5, and considering that it's been a while since I've taken time off to go somewhere new I consulted the Supercharger map for mental-checkout opportunities. Of course, one never really "checks out" in a career where work-related email/instant-messaging is always at your side ... but such is life. Like my Model S, I'm always connected to the online grid by design.
In the past my main charging sources outside of the Bay Area hovered almost exclusively around Superchargers, but this time I added Destination Charging to the map's view and decided to head towards a coastal location. Ocean views always help reset one's mind (at least temporarily).
I eventually stumbled upon Pismo Beach, a place I only knew by name but knew nothing about. After some reading, I decided YOLO and chose what looked like a simple lodging option without the unnecessary clutter and extravagance of a resort - The Inn at the Cove seemed to fit the bill:
It took several hours from the Bay Area to arrive and I stopped by the Atascadero Supercharger just north of San Luis Obispo. The Inn at the Cove is right at the edge of the coastline (as well as right next to Highway 1). There is a single Tesla HPWC at the check-in lobby. Each room has a balcony facing the ocean. If you gently toss a rock from your balcony it'll tumble down the side of the cliff and hit water below. The view is absolutely amazing and the weather was perfect. I suggest bringing a decent camera and a long lens.
This is the rear side of The Inn facing the ocean. I booked one of the second floor rooms (this pet-friendly hotel only allows pets on the first floor) and every room gets a virtually uninterrupted view of the water leading to infinity.
Morro Bay is another small city half an hour away from Pismo Beach. I first heard of it when The Verge did their original Model S driving review. I had dinner there as my first experience in this general area of California.
The next day I started with coffee, naturally. I'm always down to check out local coffee houses and Steaming Bean is right down the street from The Inn. I'm happy to report that Pismo Beach doesn't seem to be flooded by a population of Starbucks at every corner.
Keep driving up Shell Beach Road and you'll find yourself at Avila Beach and passing that will lead you into Port San Luis moments later.
Had to stop for coffee and ice cream at Avila Beach.
Another view of The Inn at the Cove from Dinosaur Caves Park. The room I was staying in is towards the left.
Even after sunset, the view remains amazing.
This trip turned out to be perhaps a day too short. I managed to book a time of the year when the weather was ideal, and having found this place using the Supercharger map, it inspires confidence to explore other getaway destinations in this manner. I suspect I'll be doing this more often in the near future. With Supercharging and Destination Charging options, travel costs are reduced quite a bit while at the same time allowing me to take road adventures more frequently.
Ultimately, this is the reason why I got a Model S - since the up-front cost of the car also factors in potential future fuel savings, I'm now reaping the benefits of smooth, relaxing electrified travel.