One Charge Challenge: Denver, Colorado
In this first edition of the One Charge Challenge, we will be exploring Denver and the Rocky Mountains to see just how much we can get done on one charge. With a high elevation and steep winding roads, we know we have to plan our route carefully to maximise the experience.
Located where the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains, Denver is a city framed by snowy peaks and vast grasslands. Accurately nicknamed the Mile High City, Denver lies exactly one mile above sea level (you can find this engraved on the steps of its State Capitol). With a rich history dating back to the mid-19th century and nature to drive for , we decided to have a look around.The updated Polestar 2 currently has a range just north of 400 miles (655 km). The question is, how much of Denver and its surroundings will we be able to explore before charging? One charge, one trip . With a high elevation and steep winding roads, we knew we had to plan the route carefully to maximise the experience.Our journey begins at the Denver Space in the heart of the city. Heading west out of the busy city, we pass Empower Field, home to the Denver Broncos (the city’s three-time Super Bowl winners and athletic pride). Unfortunately, they were out of town during our visit, so instead our first stop on this one-charge trip was the Denver Art Museum. With a building as artistically designed as the artwork inside, the museum is a must-visit. On display is the Desert Rider: Dreaming in Motion exhibition, which explores the connections between transportation and identity by transforming vehicles associated with the Southwest desert region into works of art.
After taking in all the cultural delights, we see the city shrinking in our rear-view mirror as we head westward into the mountains. Turning off the freeway, we are soon met with a sign that reads Red Rocks Entrance 1. Visiting Denver without stopping at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre would be an opportunity missed. Not only is it visually stunning, but chances are your favourite band is playing there, too.The construction of this fabled concert venue began some 70 million years ago . Needless to say, this was not by any human hand, but a geological event known as the Laramide orogeny that pushed into place the 300-foot monoliths that surround the stage. While they do create a dramatic and unique backdrop, they also serve an auditory purpose. Rather than reflecting sound, these rocks absorb it, creating a distinct acoustic effect. Legendary performances by The Beatles, U2, Jimi Hendrix and Diana Ross (to name a few) have taken place in this naturally formed site.It’s worth noting that music magazine Pollstar (with their very clever name) renamed their award for Best Small Outdoor Venue to the Red Rocks Award. This was after having awarded Red Rocks with the prize for the eleventh time.
After about an hour’s drive into the mountains, we reach Mt Evans Road. The journey now becomes a challenge of deciding where to stop to take in the views, as every new turn leads to an even more breath-taking panorama.Words can’t do the experience justice. In moments like this, it’s best to let the pictures do the talking.
Visible in the picture below, the Red Cliff Bridge’s emerald beams stand out in a land of deep green forest and rugged rocks. Completed in 1941, its construction was only made possible by workers committing themselves to spending entire days suspended in harnesses hovering over the canyon - regardless of winter storms and raging winds.By this bridge is where our adventure comes to an end. But it doesn’t mean that yours has to. We noticed plenty of charging stations along the road for those who want to continue their adventure. To see these views yourself, use the I-70 heading west as your guiding star, but don’t forget to pull over or take a smaller road to find the real gems.
One historic drive: Polestar 3 and the Pacific Coast Highway
There are a few journeys that every car fan should make. Sacred asphalt imbued with a unique kind of history. One not just of cars themselves, but celebrity, food, music and everything else in-between. The Pacific Coast Highway is one of them.