DAY 105 - TONOPAh, NV
Tonopah, a little mining town on the intersection of route 6 and 95 in Nevada. The town originated around 1900 which is a funny story. Prospector Jim Butler went looking for his donkey that had wandered off during the night and sought shelter near a rock outcropping. When Butler discovered the animal the next morning, he picked up a rock to throw at it in frustration, noticing that the rock was unusually heavy. He had stumbled upon the second-richest silver strike in Nevada history.
I stayed at the Jim Butler Inn, next to the historic Mizpah hotel, which has also a club and a casino. But in Nevada basically every local grocery has a few slot machines in the store to try your luck and lose a few dollars. I strolled through the back of the town on the side of the hill. Half of the buildings are trashed and abandoned, a few dating from the towns origin and heyday. Dogs were barking at me behind fences, proving that people still lived here. Most backyard were full of junk.
At the bar of the Tonopah Brewery I ordered ribs and the .999 IPA, very refreshing and tasty after a desert ride, I can assure you. I shared a conversation with Lee, from Tucson, AR. A short, middle-aged man who looked like Ian Mckellen, driving his motorbike around the South West to California, where he and his wife had a house for the summer. His wife travelled by plane. We talked about bikes and politics, about Triumph and Trump. He was ashamed of the political course the US was moving toward. “America is not a friendly country anymore.”