Artist paints women hikers

In 2014, Sky Evans came across a photo on the internet of Colorado’s Hope Pass. An Oregon woman Evans knew was hiking the Continental Divide Trail and had posted the photo to her blog. Evans asked if she could paint the image.

“I wind up having this amazing experience with this painting in that it was like nothing I had ever done before,” Evans said last week at her home in Monroe. Evans had a print of her painting made and sent it to the woman’s house so it would be there when she got off the trail.

Inspired by the experience, Evans joined hiking pages on Facebook and asked women to send her photos from their backpacking trips. “I got hundreds of photos from the trail,” Evans said.

She chose some of the images to paint. Many were from the Pacific Crest Trail, featuring places like the Goat Rocks Wilderness, Mount Rainier and the Obsidian Trail in the Three Sisters Wilderness. One painting is based on an image from Crater Lake National Park. Another features a woman hiking the Arizona National Scenic Trail.

Evans, who is 56, had been a backpacker in her younger days. She so enjoyed painting the hiking experiences of other women that she decided she wanted to return to the trail. In 2016, she hiked 150 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail in Oregon.

The artist painted some of her own images from the hike. Evans now has a series of trail paintings called “The Wilderness of Women,” which will be on display in June at the Art in the Valley gallery in Corvallis, Oregon. The paintings feature a variety of styles, including impressionistic, abstract and realistic.

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