R/T- Bucks County PA to Waitsfield VT - Chevy Bolt EV Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 11:47 AM Thread Starter
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R/T- Bucks County PA to Waitsfield VT

My first long trip in my Bolt since driving it home from Maryland the day I bought it was the weekend before last. The total mileage from Doylestown, PA area to Waitsfield, VT and back, with some local driving in the Waitsfield area, was 753 miles.

The Bolt was perfect. No problems. I got better mileage than I anticipated on the mostly highway drive. Unlike the stretch of the NYS Thruway from Albany to Buffalo, the Thruway from the NYC area to the Lake George, NY area had quite a few DCFC possibilities. And the chargers are close enough that if one is out or busy, there's a good chance you can reach another.

There were chargers at most of the rest areas along the Thruway, including some free chargers provided by NYS. I stopped at Malden (Greenlots) and the beautiful new Adirondack Welcome Center (free, provided by NYS) in Queensbury. The last charge on the way up was in Middlebury, VT (EVGo). My charger reviews are on Plugshare.com, so I won't go into detail about them again here except to say that all were available and working fine when I got to them.

I had enough juice to easily make it back to Queensbury from Waitsfield on the return trip. I was pleasantly surprised that climbing/descending the approximate 3000 foot high pass over General Stark Mountain (Mad River Glen Ski area) twice was no problem for the Bolt. On both legs of the trip, on the journey down the mountain, the regen just about evened-out the battery loss when climbing.

I had to go a few miles out of the way to get on the Thruway just South of the Adirondack Welcome Center (which is Northbound only) charge and then turn around at the next exit North (Glen Falls). It was worth the extra 10-15 minutes of driving to use the free chargers and the new facilities at the AWC were among the best I have ever seen on a roadside rest area.

My final charge was just off the Thruway at the Woodbury Commons Mall. This was my least favorite stop as it took 15 minutes to go the 3 miles from the Thruway to the garage at the Mall where the chargers are located due to heavy traffic and construction- then it took 20 more minutes to get out of the Mall and back on to the Thruway for the same reasons. This was on a Sunday evening- I can't imagine what it would be like during peak shopping hours (and, FWIW, it's, no sh*t- a half mile walk to the food court from the garage where the chargers are).

I charged up to a 130 mile SOC with an approximate 105 miles to my home charger. I arrived with about 20 miles left in the tank- 'first time I ever saw the GOM go orange and I kept getting warning messages from the My Chevrolet app about finding a charger soon (which I ignored).

I was really pleased by the performance of the Bolt and there was never a time that I was worried about range. It was an enjoyable first long outing.

This trip gave me the peace of mind to venture out in the Bolt for a planned August drive to Chicago and back which will be around a 1600 mile R/T.

My only negative thought was fear that as EVs become more popular, there will be increasing pressure on the charging network and a much higher chance of long waits to charge or chargers needing maintenance. But for the next couple of years at least, it seems like the long distance DCFC networks here in the Northeast are good and going to get better.

2019 Bolt Premier
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Last edited by MarksBolt; 07-11-2019 at 11:56 AM.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 01:12 PM
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I'm taking a trip from Florida to Maine in September in my Bolt. this story makes me feel a bit more comfortable about it. Thank you
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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I'm taking a trip from Florida to Maine in September in my Bolt. this story makes me feel a bit more comfortable about it. Thank you
FL to ME is a huge one @tfay412 . Please post your experiences, I go to both of those places on occasion and would love to hear about it.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 02:23 PM
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I'm taking a trip from Florida to Maine in September in my Bolt. this story makes me feel a bit more comfortable about it. Thank you [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/ChevyBolt/smilies/tango_face_smile.png[/IMG]
FL to ME is a huge one @tfay412 . Please post your experiences, I go to both of those places on occasion and would love to hear about it.

I plan to document it on YouTube and blog about the trip as I'd be the first to actually do so. I believe that this is an important step to getting people to buy long range EV's. So stay tuned 🙂
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 03:22 PM
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FL to ME is a huge one @tfay412 . Please post your experiences, I go to both of those places on occasion and would love to hear about it.
By any chance, Did you note how many interstate miles you got going 70-75mph? and did you wait for full charge at fast chargers?
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 03:50 PM
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I had the same experience on my trip from MA to PA last week. Along Rt. 95 there were plenty of DCFC and I only needed one in CT and one in NY to complete my ~350 mile trip. I averaged 4.8 mi/kWh driving no more then 65 mph with the A/C on. On the return trip my efficiency decreased to 4.4 mi/kWh due to heavy rain and street flooding. I charged four times at three different locations and each time I was the only one charging. Nice!

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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By any chance, Did you note how many interstate miles you got going 70-75mph? and did you wait for full charge at fast chargers?
I didn't specifically log highway vs. local miles. The vast majority of the 753 miles were highway. For the first leg, to be cautious, I kept the Cruise Control at 65. After I saw how well the car did, I bumped it up to 70 or sometimes a bit higher, still using the CC whenever possible. And when needed, I zoomed out of congestion or away from questionable drivers.

I did not note much of a change in mileage between 65 and 75 MPH. The DIC ring around the speedometer went to a yellow ring above 65 MPH (indicating that it wasn't optimal) but I saw little difference in the actual mileage.

I did not charge to full along the highway since I had planned stops about 150 miles apart. Typically I charged to around 80%. I did a full charge at EVGo in Middlebury VT, since I was going to be climbing mountains and wasn't staying where there was a destination charger (and no nearby DCFCs). It shut off and 80% and then I started a new session (no one was waiting) to fill the battery.

It was almost as costly to top-off the last 20% of the charge as it was to get it from 20% to 80%, so it's not something I would often do if there was any other option. At that particular EVGo, it cost nearly $30 to get to full. (Thankfully, the free charges at the Adirondack Welcome Center offset the total cost).

There are quite a few people on this forum with way more distance travel than me. @NewsCoulomb and @STE among others have YouTube videos and have lots of experience on long road trips in their Bolts. You may want to consider asking them questions if you have concerns and/or checking out their YouTube channels (News Coulomb and Plug and Play EV, respectively).

'Hope you have a great adventure and I look forward to your videos @tfay412 !

2019 Bolt Premier
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Last edited by MarksBolt; 07-11-2019 at 04:04 PM.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 04:17 PM Thread Starter
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I had the same experience on my trip from MA to PA last week. Along Rt. 95 there were plenty of DCFC and I only needed one in CT and one in NY to complete my ~350 mile trip. I averaged 4.8 mi/kWh driving no more then 65 mph with the A/C on. On the return trip my efficiency decreased to 4.4 mi/kWh due to heavy rain and street flooding. I charged four times at three different locations and each time I was the only one charging. Nice!
That's a great set of numbers @PhilBo !

2019 Bolt Premier
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DCII, Infotainment, DCFC

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2017 Volt LT (Gen 2)
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 05:38 AM
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That's a great set of numbers @PhilBo !
Thanks MarksBolt. Great numbers and a great experience for my first trip (to Bucks County) requiring DC fast charging.

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Last edited by PhilBo; 07-12-2019 at 05:41 AM.
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