Camping at
Kodachrome Basin
in our Model 3

Mark D Larsen
August 24, 2019

Lead Us Into Tent’ation
(Click to enlarge)

We decided to again go camping for a few days last week, this time to Kodachrome Basin State Park. Below are the annotated photos and movies of our trip.

NOTE: You can click on any of the following photos to enlarge them and the movies to play them.

I charged Correcaminos’ battery to 100% shortly before we left. You can see that this put 306 miles of range into the pack. In case you’re wondering: no, I still haven’t received the promised range increase, and am frankly thinking that… I never will at this point.

Here we are, with our tiny camp trailer hooked up, ready to pull out of the driveway.

I explain in this video where we’re at, where we’re going, our intended route, and the use of Autopilot with the trailer trailing behind us.

I’ve always thought that, if this jagged mountain outside of Zion were back east, it would be designated a national park.

Here we have arrived at the entrance to Springdale, the town adjacent to the national park.

I pulled over at this initial parking lot for the town to snap this photo of Correcaminos and the trailer with Zion’s peaks in the background.

After entering the national park, we turned onto the road to the east entrance, where I took this photo overlooking Zion Canyon before reaching the tunnel in the following video.

I was curious to see how Autpilot would handle going through the tunnel. No problem! We then checked that the navigation finally updated for our intended route, and took a look at the energy efficiency screen to see what percentage of charge we might have when we arrived at the campsite.

We’d seen ads for a German bakery on Highway 89, and decided to stop there to get some lunch.

‘Tisa was more than ready to be served.

Upon leaving the bakery, we noticed that there was a wildfire looming ahead, and hoped it wasn’t near Kodachrome Basin.

As we got closer to the turnoff to Bryce Canyon and Kodachrome Basin, we could see the wildfire to the east.

We’d snapped a similar photo at this entrance to Red Canyon previously, when we visited Bryce Canyon last summer —but without the trailer.

At the Red Canyon Visitor Center, we learned the fire had been caused by lightning on July 29, but was now a “controlled burn” that the forest service was monitoring. We could now see that it was to the south, not near our destination.

After passing Bryce, and dropping back down in elevation, we finally reached the state park.

Here is Correcaminos about to make a grand entrance.

Tamara took this video as we entered the park and drove to the campground.

The display showed that we’d driven 155.8 miles, using 277 Wh/mile, and still had 99 miles of range in the battery pack.

The energy efficiency screen showed that we’d arrived with a 32% charge.

I plugged Correcaminos’ MCU into the NEMA 14-50 outlet in the RV panel of our campsite.

To recharge to 90% would take 6 hours at 32A, putting 28 miles per hour into the pack.

We popped open the trailer and set up camp.

Since our last camping trip, I had purchased a canopy and a screen room that attach to the trailer, giving us some shade and protection from bugs when sitting outside.

‘Tisa immediately climbed on the bed to make herself a snug cave in our pillows.

She seems to enjoy camping even more than we do!

The sun started to set, so it was time for a nightcap.

Here's to going camping —without a tailpipe!

Tide and ´Tisa wait for no man, so she and I were up at the crack of dawn.

Correcaminos had finished charging to 90% hours earlier during the night.

After the sun finally rose over the Basin, I took this short panorama video of the vistas around our campsite.

In the video, I’m sure you noticed this… um… let’s call it a rather… mmm… obscene formation. There are more of these monoliths in Kodachrome, as I’ll show you below.

After showering and having breakfast, we headed out on the road to drive the scenic highway between Kodachrome and the town of Boulder.

These cliffs near Kodachrome certainly show how many millions of years it must have taken to deposit layer after layer of sand when the area was underwater to form the sandstone.

I had never seen Bryce Canyon from the east like this. It was too bad that the smoke from the “controlled” fire made the view rather hazy.

I had to chuckle at the slogan over the door of this antique sheepherder wagon.

This sign on the outskirts of Henrieville was unique.

Here we are entering the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

I took this panorama shot in a futile attempt to show how vast the monument is.

We pulled over at a viewpoint to take more photos.

This plaque explains how the scenic highway was built as part of FDR’s New Deal.

This panorama also doesn’t do justice to the monument’s size. I can’t tell you how irritated I am that Trump and his cronies are trying to confiscate half of this protected area so that fossil fools can drill for oil and frack natural gas from it.

About midway along the scenic highway, there is a trailhead to hike into Calf Creek Falls. The 3-mile trek would be too much for ‘Tisa in 90°F temperatures, but here you can see the canyon in which the hike meanders.

This is the far end of the hike in the distance.

I again attempted a panorama shot of the entire canyon.

I think this video gives a more accurate impression of the size and length of the canyon.

We arrived at the town of Boulder. Gee. I wonder why they gave it that name…?

As you probably know, there are still polygamists in Utah, and we noticed one of their typical homesteads, with separate houses for two wives, connected by a walkway for the husband’s convenience.

For lunch, we stopped get some street tacos from this vendor at the park of an Anasazi museum.

Tamara then wanted to stop at a rather rustic health food store, and I snapped this picture of its outdoor restrooms.

I wanted Tamara to take this video of a stretch of the scenic highway along the top of a ridge, so that you can see how both sides of the roadway drop off steeply into canyons below. Kinda scary to drive it! Thank goodness for Autopilot.

Another photo at one of the viewpoints along the highway.

Climbing back up to the start of the Grande Staircase-Escalante.

‘Tisa considers lizards her mortal enemy, but wasn’t sure what to make of this behemoth statue at the Escalante Visitor Center.

Returning to the campground toward the end of the day.

As you can see, we had driven 152 miles that day, nearly the same distance as we had driven to reach the campground from home. We had averaged 223 Wh/mile, and still have 97 miles left from the 90% charge. The Model 3’s efficiency never ceases to impress me.

Here is another rock chimney… with what I deem “Trump’s Stump” next to it.


And another.

And another.

‘Tisa was ready for bed after our long day.

The next morning dawned with a few wispy clouds.

We packed up the trailer and headed home.

I took this shot by one of the short tunnels in Red Canyon.

Here we’re entering Zion Canyon again from the east side.

Here is a video of our entrance. I had to disengage Autopilot because of tourists on the road. We checked the navigation and energy consumption and then pulled up to the ranger station.

After showing our pass to the rangers, we drove to Checkerboard Mesa.

I pulled over at the viewpoint to take this photo.

The formations on this side of the park are so unique, with their cracks than run both horizontally and vertically.

Another shot of the canyons on this side of the park.

Here I give a description of what we’re driving through.

We enter the tunnel again and let Autopilot do its magic.

After exiting the tunnel, I pulled over to this viewpoint to take another photo of Correcaminos with Zion Canyon in the background.

Looking back at that spot, you can see the tunnel “window” that we passed in the video above if you look closely at the rock wall above us.

We stopped to use the restrooms at a Springdale city park, and this statue was kind enough to hold ‘Tisa in her lap.

We arrived home after driving 154.2 miles from the campground. Our Wh/mile were only 236, and we still had 95 miles left from the 90% charge.

The entire trip we drove 464.7 miles, at an average of 246 Wh/mile.

As you can see, the trip put us over 24,000 miles on the odometer, and our lifetime efficiency is still holding steady at 239 Wh/mile.

You might have noticed that the 100% and 90% charges above predicted ranges a smidgeon lower than what they were originally in Correcaminos. This has also been the case lately with our daily 80% charge: just today it displayed 245 miles of range instead of the original 248. If this is a consistent trend, and not just a fluke, I estimate that the pack has lost about 1.2% capacity since delivery. And if I plot an exponential trendline from all the charges I have put into Correcaminos to date, the result suggests that our Model 3 will still have a 93% capacity when it crosses the 8 year drivetrain/battery warranty threshold:

I’d be elated if that projection proves accurate. I am frankly amazed at how well the battery is holding up, since our previous LEAF had lost more than 18% capacity by the time it had the same number of miles on the odometer. Way to go, Tesla! And thank you for a pleasant, relaxing, scenic camping trip —without tailpipe emissions!