Left the Tok motorcycle campground early. Rode to Haines Junction, Yukon. Not a great distance, but was one of reflection, deep thought and profound appreciation that our creator has allowed me to see and experience a few of his blessings today.
The scenery was beautiful and spectacular, but I have shown you many photos of it. Wide, wide rivers flowing to only God knows where.
Most of the day Da'mit and I were surrounded by snow capped peaks and mountain ridges. Sometimes near, other times afar, but never completely out of sight.
Today a new discovery was found in the spiritual world. First, even as the Alaska Highway was being built in the 1940's, the soldiers and workers found time to pray and give thanks. Early churchs may have been crude affairs, but it was what was happening inside that made a world of difference to those in attendance.
Quonset huts were often converted to churches. While Quonset were based on a British Nissen design from World War I, parishioners did their best to make the huts look less military and more holy.
In Beaver Creek, Yukon
Even log cabin type structures were the early churches. The structures were built with whatever materials the people of the community could donate. Did they think that maybe this would be a temporary structure until a "proper" church could be built? Little did they realize that over the years, these early churches became the repository of a communities happiness, sorrows, joys, tears and laughter. A modern structure could never replace nor improve upon the spiritual value these building now possess.
The final spiritual stop today had piqued my curiosity when I first saw it on the ride north. Today I had time to stop and investigate. Only fifty yards off the main road was a freshly installed memorial? Not your typical flowers and small white cross marking where someone had perished on the highway, but a strange and mystical circle of stones and rocks, some large, others small, smooth and round. Then the tall totems with carvings and animal parts. Approaching the site, one could see that the stones were not randomly placed, but carefully set in a design that held meaning for the creators.
Dismounting, I carefully walked around the site, trying to understand the meaning of it all.
On a large granite stone standing vertical like a headstone, was writing from and about Douglas Richard Twiss. This was his final resting place as selected, approved, created and sanctified by the local First Nation tribe, of which Douglas was a young member.
Upon closer inspection, I realized that many of the large stones carefully placed in the outer circle, had cravings on them
The placement, size and arrangement of everything was done with careful thought, with great significance to the tribe and the the memory of Douglas.
Carefully I retreated, not wishing to disturb the site nor the spirits which reside there. There I realized that a whole community had put a lot of themselves into selecting, creating each individual piece and making its placement special for Douglas and his final resting place.