DAYTON — Captain Genevieve Evans is a Montana native, but she left the shores of home to chart her own course, and a pretty impressive one at that.
"Captain G" as she's called, and it is a title she has earned. She has been a USCG captain, an ASA instructor and a professional sailor for the past decade, spending her time racing, teaching and sailing in the Virgin Islands, Belize and Montana.
"I really decided that I had an itch that just needed to be scratched and figured out that offering sailing for people in the Flathead Valley was something that I had to do," Evans said.
The owner of Go Sail Flathead Lake Montana, Evans is one of the few women who have received the captain title, and she wears it with the purpose of teaching people how to sail at her local business on Flathead Lake.
"For me, always has just been an opportunity to be self-reliant," said Evans. "I challenge myself and network with a lot of other people, and we offer sailing lessons for women, especially on the lake because it's an opportunity for them to challenge themselves, and take risks and be a part of a team."
"I think women not only get uplifted from each other but the challenges that we put each other up against," added participant and owner of Outsiety women's outdoor group Lauri McCargar.
There's two titles that Evans takes seriously: captain, and business owner. Her company and crew continue to grow, now offering lessons, rentals and charters with access to 10 different boats and sailing in three locations on Flathead Lake.
"Women who take our lessons learn how to be good teachers," said Evans. "We're not only teaching them how to operate the boat where to go. Now they're taking their families out and taking their crew and getting more people involved in it so that they get the confidence to take other people out."
"Not only is it sharing her knowledge but it is encouraging ladies to get out of their comfort zone," added McCargar.
If you ask Evans what's the one thing she hopes you learn beyond sailing, her answer is easy.
"Every time I went sailing with a woman, or another group of women, I always just felt this intense bond that that really led me to be a good captain and a good leader," said Evans.