Creator of the peerless Curves magazine series and avid Porsche fan, Stefan Bogner continues his review of the world’s finest driving roads – this time we’re in California
No matter where you’re from, the West Coast of America provides a particular allure when it comes to drawing up that road trip bucket list. You have the laidback Americana vibe to satisfy your cultural side. You have the largest, and arguably most interesting, Porsche community on the planet. And you have legendary roads such as Highway 1 at your disposal, delivering incomparable coastal cruising.
So it’s no wonder that celebrated driving road documentarian Stefan Bogner has turned his attentions to this legendary location via his Curves magazine series, producing the ultimate driving review.
SFM: What inspired you to cover California?
SB: It’s more than just about driving, it’s the lifestyle. Added to this, there are beautiful surrounding States to explore, so it´s a perfect starting point.
You have amazing changing landscape, megacities, inspired architecture, beaches, mountains, wilderness…and of course great weather! The food scene is also a must, something you can factor in around your route.
When I was young, California was the place to go. The influential music scene, from the 60s through to present day, the legendary counter-culture, and the many communities from around the world, which makes it such a melting pot.
SFM: How much did you know about the roads beforehand?
SB: I actually knew the area pretty well. My folks had a company in the US from the 1980s up to the millennium, so during my time as a teenager and while studying I travelled around quite a bit.
SFM: What was the biggest challenge/issue when researching/compiling the book?
SB: Actually, it was really easy! You can get all the information via the web, books, maps, as well as on your travels – it’s surprisingly straight forward. And everybody helps you, the people are exceptionally forthcoming.
I even located a helicopter for the aerial shots pretty easy, however drone flying is very regulated over there, so only 10% of pictures for the magazine came from the latter.
SFM: What was your favourite stretch of road?
SB: Hard to say, in the end it´s the whole trip which stays in your head. That said, maybe Joshua Tree.
SFM: What was your favourite stopping point?
SB: The coast road is of course beautiful, Big Sur is legendary, all the National Parks, Palm Springs and of course Joshua Tree. I also loved the numerous amazing hotels and restaurants - Design in Palm Springs is a modern classic!
SFM: Sum up the roads of California in a sentence.
SB: It´s like one of your favourite albums, always bringing back great memories.
SB: Take your time - enjoy and don’t rush. Explore the small roads and just let it happen. After all, California is the blueprint and the mother of the road trip, so just drive and ensure you’ve got great music!
SFM: Finally, what Porsche model would you pick for this trip?
SB: Porsche 550 Spyder if possible, 356 A or a 906 (which we fortunately had), or a new Porsche convertible.
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