Three Country Tour on an Electric Motorcycle – Returning Home

2 years ago by Ben Rich 10

Delicious maple whiskey, sadly never to be enjoyed thanks to gravity.

Delicious maple whiskey, sadly never to be enjoyed thanks to gravity.

It has been one month since I left my home in NJ on a quest to travel through 3 countries and over 5,000 miles on my Zero SR electric motorcycle. It is fitting that the last day should bring with it one of the most memorable moments of the entire journey.

The day started like many of the previous 30 days, waking up at 6:40am for a 7am departure from Montreal. I said goodbye to my friend Didier and hit the road so I could ride in as much daylight as possible. Before crossing the border I got some delicious Maple Whiskey at Duty Free shop, then proceeded to SUNY Plattsburgh for my first charge of the day.

Charging in Plattsburgh went smoothly despite one of the connector pins in my onboard charger coming out. I simply shoved it back in and it worked perfectly. I then traveled 103 miles to Lake George, which was easy going the other way, but when I arrived in town with 5% battery remaining the bike reduced power so I limped into the Holiday Inn at a slow speed.

 Crossroads Ford where I found a special treat on the last day of my epic journey.

Crossroads Ford where I found a special treat on the last day of my epic journey.

From there I went to Crossroads Ford in Ravena, NY which was closed as I expected. However, a guy came out and invited me in while he “cleaned up some things.” I thought he was the cleaning guy, but it turns out his name is Ron Teator and he is the owner of the dealership! We proceeded to have one of the best conversations of the entire trip for the next 45 minutes.

 Talking with Ron Teator at Crossroads Ford in Ravena, NY.  A great guy who made my trip today infinitely more interesting!

Talking with Ron Teator at Crossroads Ford in Ravena, NY. A great guy who made my trip today infinitely more interesting!

He made sure his charger is available for all kinds of cars (even after hours) because he likes meeting new people. I wouldn’t characterize him specifically as an “EV guy” but he has a deep appreciation for how electric car technology can enhance the driving experience. He even offered to give me a test drive in a C-Max Energi if I had time. It’s times like these that I truly appreciate being forced to “travel slow”. Meeting people like Ron has made this a truly uplifting experience.

Charging at Woodbury Common using an NRG EVGo station.  Wish I could have used the nearby CHAdeMO charging station.

Charging at Woodbury Common using an NRG EVGo station. Wish I could have used the nearby CHAdeMO charging station.

Stopped at Nauna's Bella Casa in my hometown to finish the journey.

Stopped at Nauna’s Bella Casa in my hometown to finish the journey.

After that I was home free. One more stop at Woodbury Common Premium Outlets near Bear Mountain and then 45 more miles to go! The charging station at Woodbury Common was made by NRG EVGo. Normally you need a card or have to call, but one of the chargers had an error (in my favor) and it worked without notifying NRG.

The remainder of the ride home was made on route 17 in NJ and there was a considerable increase in congestion as I entered the most densely populated state in the Union.

Reaching my house was a bittersweet moment. Simultaneously I realized that I would not be exploring new regions of the country tomorrow, and that I would wake up in my own bed and soon see my NYC friends again. This has been an incredible journey, filled with adventure, growth and learning as all journeys should be. Sadly, I dropped the maple whiskey on the concrete floor of my garage.

The things I have written in the articles describing this journey have largely been about riding and charging an electric motorcycle on a long range road trip. However, the truth of the matter is that this journey has been all about reconnecting with good friends. I stayed with family or friends (who I met mostly through swing dancing) and nothing can replace physically being with a close friend in terms of personal fulfillment. Those shared moments of being together with incredible people have been the greatest parts of the journey.

My odometer at the end of the journey.

My odometer at the end of the journey.

Thanks to everyone who met me along the way, provided charging, and who housed me on this epic adventure. Here is the breakdown of my costs on this journey. Since I often eat in NYC, the food costs were even with what I normally pay each month.

Budget = $301.75
Hotels/AirBnB = $249.06
Charging = $52.69
$17.95 (Chargepoint – 239kWh)
$10 (Mansfield Nissan in Ohio – 4kWh),
$8.24 (Blink – ??kWh, about 20kWh)
$5 (Fancy Gap KOA, NC – 10kWh)
$5 (Quail Springs RV Park, Uvalde, TX – 20kWh)
$3 (Flatonia RV Ranch, 20kWh)
$2 (donation at Leake County Water Park, MS – $10kWh)
$1.50 (Holiday Pines RV Park, PA – 10kWh)

At the end of the journey my odometer is now 13,030 and when I started it was 6,209 giving me 6,821 miles in 22 days of travel. I averaged 310 miles per day with my longest day being a 475 mile bohemoth ride from Ohio to New Jersey. So in round numbers, it cost me $300 to travel $7,000 miles in 3 weeks. Booyeah!

Now it’s time to write some thank you notes and let my aching body rest a bit! Thanks for following my epic journey!

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10 responses to "Three Country Tour on an Electric Motorcycle – Returning Home"

  1. Campisi says:

    Alas, poor whiskey! I knew it well, a liquor of infinite taste and most excellent flavour…

  2. Scramjett says:

    “It’s times like these that I truly appreciate being forced to ‘travel slow’.”

    Interesting point. I wonder if driving plug-ins will allow us to slow down, take in the sights, meet people and help us reconnect with each other and achieve a greater sense of community? Or am I just expecting too much of 21st Century Americans?

    1. Campisi says:

      I think you’re expecting too much of their employers. Everybody’s in a hurry because they get hardly any vacation time- much less paid vacation- and any time spent in transit is time not spent at their planned destination.

      1. Scramjett says:

        Good point! Even when you do get vacation, it can quite often be rushed, especially if your manager needs you to “come in” to “review” something or “check your email” when you “get back to your hotel.”

        Reasons like that are why I am glad I was not issued a company phone and why I’m very selective about who I give my personal cell phone number to.

        1. Campisi says:

          I’ve done a good number of Iron Butt rides in the last few years, mostly on bikes (and in gear) primarily meant for urban/semi-urban commuting. When people respond with surprise or admiration, all I can think to say is “dude, I had somewhere to BE.” It’s *at best* a four-day weekend, I’m not burning time and money at a hotel.

  3. Mikey says:

    Now I can stop rolling my eyes at the constant updates.

  4. Rick Danger says:

    In every great adventure, there has to be a casualty… RIP maple whiskey.

  5. TNT says:

    I have really enjoyed your videos. Thanks for taking the time & energy to make them!

  6. Ken says:

    Thanks for stopping by to charge on the first day of your epic adventure. I didn’t realize this trip was gonna be so much more than your usual nyc to dc trips or i would have given you my ram cellphone mount to use for your trip. It was nice to read an update from you here on inside evs every few days. Feel free to stop by anytime for a free charge, ice water, and a cool place to sit.

  7. ClarksonCote says:

    Very cool, bummer about the maple whiskey though. I’ll have to try that at some point. 🙂