Some artists are willing to go the distance for their love of the subject. That’s just what these area artists did.

Twice a year for 20 years now, local art instructor/artist and Graham resident Kaye Franklin takes art students to create art using the plein air technique of painting outdoors.

She and various students have traveled to Spain, France, Italy, England, Portugal, Mexico, Guatemala, Canada, Alaska, Hawaii and several national parks in the United States. This year, she and nine of her students traveled to Glacier National Park in northwest Montana on June 3 to capture their trip with paint and canvas.

The group arrived in Kalispell, Montana, and stopped at a store to gather supplies for their stay in Glacier National Park at the century-old McDonald Lodge. The national park has one of the largest intact ecosystems in the continental U.S. with wildlife including sheep, moose, grizzly bears and black bears, to name a few.

Additionally, there are more than 26 glaciers here and 700 miles of trails leading through cedar groves and rugged backcountry. After they gathered supplies, they drive down the 50-mile-long “Going to the Sun Road,” which leads to the national park.

“We had a beautiful drive to Glacier National Park,” said Franklin. “(There were) many tall trees, the lake on the left with heavy gray clouds hovering over the huge mountains.”

The lodge sits on Lake McDonald surrounded by giant old trees, beautiful flowers and greenery, Franklin said. As the group entered the lodge, they were welcomed with tree trunks that stretched to the three-story roof and a walk-in fireplace.

“The fire has one large log and it never goes out in the summer,” Franklin said. “It was impressive to see everyone sitting around enjoying the fire until we realized this was the only place everyone could get WiFi ... they were on their cell phones.”

Read the entire story in this weekend's Graham Leader.