By Tony Drake
This morning we were up by 4:30 a.m. in anticipation of today’s 3,845-foot elevation gain from Dubois, WY into the Absaroka mountain range and up to the summit of the Togwotee Pass to 9,655 feet, located on the Continental Divide, on our way down through the Teton National Park into Jackson, WY.
I learned that Togwotee was a subchief under Chief Washakie of the Sheephearder Tribe, a branch of the Shoshone. Today Anna and I were riding sweep (my 3rd time this week). We started off with 2 flat tire repairs, but these short delays were quickly forgotten as we looked around in wonder of the beauty all around us.
The ride today was a reminder of the diversity and beauty of God’s creation and His command in forming the stunning landscapes, the majesty of the towering Grand Tetons, and the added color and dimension of the clouds in the expansive blue Wyoming sky. It leaves me speechless and in awe of God’s power and His creation!
As I reached the summit of the Togwotee Pass, I was suddenly overwhelmed by the beauty and stirring of emotion that brought me to tears. As I rolled over to the Rest Stop, Anna noticed my quivering lip and chin and wrapped her arms around my shoulders to comfort me…no words were exchanged or required. That’s just an example of the support and connections we’ve all made collectively along this journey together.
I’m just so grateful, after the physical injuries and traumas in my life, to be able to make this journey of Faith in Action with the Fuller Center…knowing it’s all by the Grace of God as I journey forward; Also, to have my sister Julie’s willingness and positive energy and support as our van/trailer driver and Rest Stop host for two weeks.
While I’m growing spiritually and humbled by all these wonderful new experiences along this journey, I’m also looking forward to our arrival in Florence, Oregon. My wife Sharon, my father Frank, my daughter Jenny and and son-in-law Adam will be there to greet and congratulate me on completing this mission and life-changing journey. How could it not be?