Coopers Rock Climbing Guides & Backcountry Adventures (CRCG) provides guiding and instruction for rock climbing and other activities in Coopers Rock State Forest.
Why did we open Coopers Rock Climbing Guides in 2010? We started CRCG because we have a passion, not just for climbing and exploring the outdoors, but because we love sharing it with others. We've centered our personal and professional lives around this idea, not simply because we want to, but because we couldn't imagine doing anything else.
Director and lead guide/instructor Andy Hershey has climbed and backpacked throughout West Virginia and the United States, and has been employed as a professor at the Adventuresports Institute (ASI) of Garrett College since 2005. Among other things at ASI, he coordinates the program’s academic backcountry and climbing related curricula. Since acquiring a bachelor’s degree in Park and Resource Management; and master’s degree in Sport Management, Andy has worked as a backcountry ranger in Yosemite National Park, worked in an adventure setting with youth-at-risk as an Adventure Specialist and Program Coordinator at the Yellow Breeches Educational Center, and with a variety of other outdoor education programs and guide services. Andy currently holds the following certifications:
- American Mountain Guides Association: Single Pitch Instructor
- American Mountain Guides Association: Climbing Wall Instructor (lead)
- American Mountain Guides Association: Climbing Wall Instructor Provider
- Wilderness Education Association: National Standards Program
- Wilderness First Responder (former EMT)
- National Association of Search and Rescue: SARTECH III
- Leave No Trace Master Educator
Instructor and Office Manager Janelle Hershey also has experience in a number of outdoor pursuits, but followed her passion for working with people to earn a bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Studies. Janelle currently supplements her real job (as a mother of two toddlers) by managing the day to day operations of the CRCG office and working part-time at the Adventuresports Institute. Her past endeavors include work as a case manager at the Yellow Breeches Educational Center and work at the Lost Valley Ranch in Pike National Forest, Colorado.
In addition, CRCG hires many other experienced guides, instructors and educators; many of whom are graduates or instructors of the Adventuresports Institute.