Natural rock shelters such as caves or overhangs were used by both Native Americans and their nemesis, the European longhunters, who came in increasing numbers to harvest hides from Native lands—often at their own peril. Appalachian ridges contain numerous such formations, which have been used as shelter for centuries. I have wanted to paint this scene for many years. Although I completed numerous and varied sketches, I always talked myself out of painting it. It was time!