After driving nearly 2,000 miles, we thought we’d catch up with Tom to find out the highlights (and the lows) of his epic road trip…
What was the inspiration behind this trip?
Stories told and experiences shared by great writers who have traveled on the road through the US and a fascination for seeing another side of America beyond the urban spaces that I know well. The might and magnificence of the country when you are out in its wild areas just takes the breath away and characters and sights you come across create so many wonderful memories and tales to pass on. Thinking about it and then doing it really does give you the bug to just keep getting on the road and pursuing the discovery of new experiences that it can lead you to.
What was the ultimate highlight?
Driving down the utterly remote loneliest road (i50) surrounded by breathtakingly beautiful scenery as dust devils moved across the landscape around me was a magical experience. Driving it in a Bentley Mulsanne, the epitome of incredible British engineering, made it very special indeed.
Do you have a favorite new discovery?
Middlegate Station, also known as the last road house just outside Fallon in Nevada. Less a discovery more the only option but a brilliant place. Character and characters out in the desert.
Every road trip has a soundtrack. What was this one’s?
Impossible but three oft repeated songs on the trip: M83 – Midnight City, Ol 55 – Tom Waits, Yellow Ledbetter – Pearl Jam MSMR – Hurricane
Most breathtaking view?
Top of a hill just outside of the small town of Austin on the loneliest road. You look back across the vast landscape you have just traversed, marvelling at the flat plains and huge escarpments and there snaking across it is that solitary road.
What was your most memorable meal or favorite eatery?
Great burgers and great people in a bar called Racks in the tiny town of Ely on the loneliest road from where we headed south to Vegas. Had been driving for hours and the feast we stumbled upon was a heavenly pit stop before we took off for Las Vegas.
Favourite town or city?
Town – Ely. Remote and welcoming surrounded by stunning scenery.
City – San Francisco. Only because I am still discovering it and I know LA and Vegas well already.
How many miles did you drive in total?
1900. The most we drove in one day was 750 miles.
What was your least favorite part of the trip?
City gridlock after the freedom of the open and remote roads. But you know it’s coming so at least it’s not an unpleasant surprise.
Tom was also interviewed on Monocle 24 Radio about his trip, listen to it here.