Route Planning: The ‘Sounds of Silence’ Rally

Do you hear the Sounds of Silence Tesla Rally calling to you? Use EVTO to quickly scope out a route!

The Big Picture

 

Black Hills

The 5th Annual “Sounds of Silence” Rally May 18, 2018 in Custer, SD. If you’re wondering how best to arrive charged up for the activities, read on. This tutorial outlines the steps to plan a 3-day road trip from the Bay Area to Custer. We’ll plan it in three connected segments, with each day’s stopping point at a Tesla Supercharger with hotels available nearby.

Note: EVTO calculates optimal routes based on parameters you’ve specified in Settings and My Cars to dial in the accuracy of its predictions. If your numbers don’t line up with ours, it’s probably because we actually weigh our payload baggage before a trip. OCD, right?


“Good morning class!”

A few mumbled responses make it to the front of the room. I put on a big brave grin, like everyone seems excited to be here and happy to see me.

“Welcome to Advanced Route Planning 101! Today we’re going to plan a trip from the Bay Area to the 5th Annual Sounds of Silence Rally in Custer South Dakota. We’ll be using several of EVTO’s route-planning tools to build our route.”

I wait for the anticipated enthusiastic responseā€¦

Crickets.

“OK! Let’s get started. First of all, you’ll need the EVTO Pro version IAP upgrade. That enables you to add multiple segments to your trips, highly recommended for longer road trips like this one.”

I look expectantly around the room. Most heads are nodding that yes, they’ve purchased the Pro version IAP. It was listed in the syllabus as a requirement.

A hand goes up.

“Yes? You in the back corner?”

“How much is the upgrade?”

Sigh. Not everyone is prepared today.

“It’s a lot less than the cost of that double chocolate mocha you’re slurping down.”

Another hand.

“Is there any way to get it for free?”

Harrumph. “Not for free, but like I told you on the first day of class, you can get a discount on all Apple App Store purchases by using discounted gift cards when they go on sale. Follow @iTunesCardDeals on Twitter to keep up with the latest offers. Anytime you see 15% or better grab it. You can find similar deals available for Google Play gift cards. Google it.”

Oh yeah, that got their attention. Lots of scribbling going down. Let’s get this show on the road.

“OK, open EVTO and let’s get going.”

1. Preview the Route

Let’s see what EVTO recommends for the most expedient, charger-populated route.

  1. New Trip:
  2. Origin: Fremont CA, aka ‘The Mothership’
  3. Destination: Custer SD, aka ‘The Rally’
  4. Waypoint Charger Selection: Auto
  5. Calculate

EVTO ponders the nature of the space-time continuum to calculate the optimal route:

“Class, you’re looking at the optimized route that EVTO calculated from the Bay Area to Custer using supercharging stops. If you were in a hurry, or lazy, you could just use this route and be on your way. But, we’re here to learn, so we’re going to build this trip in segments.”

A hand shoots up. The hand belongs to Mr. Double Chocolate Mocha. Quelle surprise.

“It’s only 1548 miles! I can load up with Twinkies, Peanut M&Ms and Big Gulps, and iron-butt it in one stretch. I’ll cue up my 50 Best Road Trips Songs playlist on repeat and I’m outta here!”

I see an opportunity to enhance the average IQ of the group. “Brilliant! You’re excused! Don’t forget to recycle your drink cup!”

As Mr. DCM exits, I recommit to making the rest of our time together a quality learning experience.

“OK, we’d probably prefer a more leisurely journey, leaving something in the tank for the rally festivities, right? Let’s put this together.”

2. Subdivide and Conquer

Eyeballing the suggested superchargers along the route preview, we’re going to pick Elko NV for the first night’s stop, and Billings MT for the second night. That puts the longest driving days up front, getting us into Custer mid-afternoon the day before the rally starts to hang silently with our EV brethren.

This tutorial features the use of Add Segment, so we’re going to start from scratch with our origin, add overnight stops in Elko and Billings, then arrive at our Custer destination.

  1. New Trip:
  2. Origin: Fremont CA
  3. Destination Charger Type: Tesla Superchargers
  4. Destination: Elko Supercharger. With superchargers enabled as a filter, the Elko site pops right up.
  5. Waypoint Charger Selection: Auto
  6. Calculate

EVTO calculates our first day journey to Elko. Select Segment Summary from the menu to review the itinerary. Looks good. Let’s establish our departure date and time to get us to Custer on the afternoon of May 17th.

“OK class, if the rally starts on the 19th, and we want to arrive on the 18th, and it’s a three day trip, what day should we leave the Bay Area?”

A couple of hands go up. I point to the quiet one over by the window.

“Will this be on the final exam?”

Shaking my head, I sigh. I point to pocket protector guy. Let’s cut to the chase.

“With three driving days, that would be, uhh, um, let’s see, a departure date of May 16th.” The rest of the class nods in agreement.

“Good! You guys are getting it!”

  1. From the menu, select Edit Segment Details.
  2. Change the departure date to May 15.
  3. Change the departure time to 8:00 AM.
  4. Save

Let’s see what time EVTO predicts we’ll arrive in Elko. Select Segment Summary from the menu to review the itinerary.

Trip Summary

Not as Iron Butt as we used to be

3. Next Stop, Billings!

We’ll use EVTO’s Add Segment feature to add our next stop, Billings MT.

  1. From the menu, select Add Segment.
  2. Destination Charger Type: Tesla Superchargers
  3. Destination: Billings Supercharger
  4. Calculate
  5. Let’s set our Elko (day 2) departure time to 8:00 AM on May 16th. From the menu, select Edit Segment Details.
  6. Change the departure date to May 16.
  7. Change the departure time to 8:00 AM.
  8. Save

“Almost there. We’ll add our final segment from Billings to Custer, setting a departure time of 8:00 AM again, and see what time EVTO predicts we’ll arrive in Custer.”

4. Custer’s Last Ice Cream Stand

Once again, we’ll use EVTO’s Add Segment feature to add our final destination, Custer SD.

  1. From the menu, select Add Segment.
  2. Destination: Custer SD
  3. Calculate
  4. Let’s set our Billings (day 3) departure time to 8:00 AM on May 17th. From the menu, select Edit Segment Details.
  5. Change the departure date to May 17.
  6. Change the departure time to 8:00 AM.
  7. Save

Finally, we’ll see what ETA EVTO predicts for our arrival in Custer. Select Segment Summary from the menu to review our day 3 itinerary.

Trip Summary

Plenty of time to enjoy the sounds of pre-rally silence!

“Good job, class! One last thingā€¦”

The class smiles in anticipation, waiting for it. They know where I’m going.

“What do we do when we find an app to be useful?”

RATE IT IN THE APP STORE!

I smiled. These guys really do get it.

“Have fun, and be safe out there! Custer’s waiting for you!”

Trip Summary

Got an idea for a tutorial? Let us know!