John William Cooper Bio

Who has impressed you the most this last year? Climber or Non-climber?A: The person who has impressed me the most this year is my father, Michael Cooper. He has worked so hard to give me a better life and more opportunities than he had as a kid. He rose up from poverty to provide a great living for our family of 6. Without him, I would never have had the opportunity to travel as much as I have, and to go to school at Northern Arizona University.

Describe a time when someone helped your climbing? A: Shortly after I started climbing a great friend of mine, Shannon Smith, really helped my climbing. At the time I had just become a member of Team Summit, and Shannon was the head coach. He really taught me how important technique and footwork are for climbing, and took me on a lot of road trips so that I could travel and improve during my high school years.

How has your experience been guiding at Hueco Tanks? A: Guiding at Hueco Tanks has been an awesome experience. I've made so many friends from all over the past 3 seasons that I guided at Hueco Tanks. It has been really cool to be able to improve access in the park through either volunteer or commercial tours.

Where do you see your climbing going? A: I see myself becoming a better climber because of my move to Flagstaff, AZ back in August 2008. I'm better able to travel since moving out west, without having to live on the road. I can literally go to Bishop or Hueco Tanks just for the weekend. I'm going to school to become a Registered Nurse so that I'll be able to better travel and help people, especially abroad.

What's the plan for this year? A: I plan on bouldering and sport climbing this spring and summer while I'm in Flagstaff. During the summer I plan to go to Maple Canyon, Wild Iris, and Rifle. In the fall I will either be in Flagstaff, or I may take an extended bouldering trip to the southeast. I imagine that I'll end up spending a lot of time in Hueco at the end of the year. Visit to see what I've been up to.