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USA: How to Play ChargePoint Hopscotch in the Nissan Leaf

If only the real world were as simple as a game of hopscotch. Quite some time ago, hopscotch would have been on my daily schoolyard agenda, along with climbing jungle gyms and picking tanbark splinters out of my young hands. Today, I’m still playing hopscotch, but of an entirely different sort. My current game involves our long-term Nissan Leaf.

How to Play ChargePoint Hopscotch in the Nissan Leaf imageI recently had to pay a weekend visit to Los Angeles International Airport, which is close to a 100-mile roundtrip (not as the crow flies) from my domicile in Orange County. In my garage sat the Leaf, charging away. Separating my physical self from LAX was mile upon mile of Southern California freeway, filled with fast-moving traffic that contrasts greatly with the typical L.A. workweek gridlock.

I was facing one of those classic “range anxiety” conundrums EV detractors keep harping about. In an ideal situation, I’d be driving those 100 miles to LAX at an undisturbed 35 mph, helped by lots of coasting and regenerative braking. I would request some downhill slopes and a tailwind, too. But I live in the real world. Unless I wanted to plot the most convoluted route from the OC to LAX and back ever devised, and earmark three hours for my trip, I wouldn’t be going 35 mph. I’d be keeping to the freeways.

But I had to get there and back in the Leaf somehow, so I got to planning. I thought of the days when I’d take some chalk and draw out a hopscotch course. I didn’t want to completely drain the Leaf’s battery at the end of the drive, so I’d need to jump from EV charging station to station to foot the travel bill. This was going to be an adult game of hopscotch, only with more severe potential consequences.


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