If you’re an electric car owner, you know that your commitment to reducing your carbon footprint can make road trips challenging. When you look at the vast expanse of highways that go for miles without passing a significant-sized town in states like Wyoming and Montana, you may feel ready to hang up your hat and skip parks like Yellowstone, Grand Teton and Glacier for a more accessible, electric car-friendly vacation.
Don’t give up yet. While you may not find chargers as prevalent as you would in L.A., with a little planning you can make your dream electric road trip a reality.
While Yellowstone’s 3,400 square miles may seem daunting, believe it or not, our nation’s first national park has more electric charging opportunities than gasoline and diesel stations. These six stations are J-1772 Level 2, with 208/240 volt electric service. You’ll be fully charged in four hours.
Yellowstone EV Charging Stations
Location: Yellowstone Forever, 308 E Park St. Gardiner, Mont.
What to do while you wait: Start by exploring Yellowstone National Park’s official nonprofit’s retail store. Proceeds from anything you buy at the shop will directly support conservation and education efforts in the national park. Up next? Explore the quaint town of Gardiner. (https://www.yellowstonepark.com/road-trips/gardiner-montana)
Mammoth Hot Springs
In front of the Haynes Picture Shops behind the Northwest corner of the Mammoth Hotel.
What to do while you wait: Explore the fascinating travertine terraces of Mammoth Hot Springs on the Lower Terrace Boardwalk (closest to the charging station) or head up the road to the Upper Terraces for a 1.5-mile loop from the parking lot. Still not charged? Treat yourself to breakfast or dinner at the Mammoth Hotel’s historic dining room.
Old Faithful Lodge Cabins (Lower Loop), outside of Showerhouse 1
What to do while you wait: There’s arguably no better place to have “time to kill” in Yellowstone than the heart of the park: Old Faithful. Watch the namesake geyser erupt, and then take a stroll through Upper Geyser Basin to see various eruptions and stunning hot pools. Eat in the dining room of the classic Old Faithful Inn or take a hike on the various trails that leave from the complex.
In front of both the Rhyolite and Washburn lodges
What to do while you wait: Hike 1.2 miles to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. On foot, you’ll be able to access the Lower Lookout Point to see the stunning falls. Or, make a night out of it and stay in the remodeled Canyon Lodge & Cabins.
In front of Teal employee dorm
What to do while you wait: Stroll along the shores of the immense Lake Yellowstone or grab a fishing permit and try your luck casting a line. The historic Lake Yellowstone Hotel Dining Room overlooking the water is also a great stop for a bite to eat.
West Yellowstone, Mont.
Gray Wolf Inn and Suites, 250 S Canyon St. or Holiday Inn, 315 W Yellowstone Ave., both in West Yellowstone, Mont.
What to do while you wait: If you didn’t see a grizzly or a wolf in Yellowstone, now’s your chance. Head to the Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center at 201 S. Canyon St. to see one of these majestic creatures before exploring the rest of West Yellowstone (https://www.yellowstonepark.com/road-trips/west-yellowstone-montana)
If you’re driving a Tesla and looking for a supercharge, your closest options are Jackson Whole Grocer & Café in Jackson, Wyo., or the Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center in West Yellowstone, Mont.
Grand Teton National Park EV Charging Stations
Yellowstone’s neighbor to the south, Grand Teton, offers three opportunities for a charge. A J-1772 at Signal Mountain Lodge, a NEMA 14-50 outlet at Signal Mountain Campground and a NEMA 14-50 outlet at Colter Bay Campground. The Colter Bay Campground outlets are only available in accessible campsites, for those who have reserved those sites. The nearby town of Jackson is well-equipped with more than 60 stations.
Glacier National Park EV Charging Stations
On the park’s west side, you’ll find a NEMA 14-50 outlet at the Sprague Creek Campground (reservations are required) and charging stations in Kalispell, Mont.
To the east, Mountain Pine Motel, Heart of Glaciers RV Park & Cabins and St. Mary Glacier Park KOA have NEMA 14-50 outlets.