Joan Wells wanted to be a cowgirl at an early age. Her cousin, Almon Bates of
Longmont, Colorado started teaching her trick roping when when she was four years
old. Almon had learned some basic rope tricks while competing in rodeos as a bull
rider and saddle bronc rider. Between the ages of ten and twelve, Joan appeared
nearly every Saturday on Juvenile Theater, a variety show broadcast live from KOLN-
Her cousin Almon told her father she would need to take more roping instruction from a professional trick roper. It was in the early 1960's when she began taking trick roping lessons from Jim Eskew, Jr. (World Champion Trick Roper) of Ardmore, OK. Eskew had traveled throughout the country and performed on his Dad’s wild west show. He was considered the greatest trick roper of all times and did tricks no one could duplicate. Before long, she was roping on her horse and performing for rodeos in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska. JW Stoker of the "Great American Wild West Show" was also a mentor and helped Joan learn two rope tricks and horse catches.
Ms. Wells performs over 80 tricks in a single routine and does such tricks as the butterfly combinations, multiple rope spins, double tricks, the Big Loop, Ocean Wave and Texas Skip. Her routine requires dexterity, agility, strength and precision as she spins the rope from one trick to the next. Her roping style is graceful, exciting and fascinating to watch.
Joan was invited to to perform for Will Roger’s Birthday Celebration at the Will Rogers Memorial in Claremore, OK. It was there she visited with Jim Rogers (Will Roger’s youngest son). He told her that her roping style was much like his father's and that his father would have liked her. Together they viewed the out takes of the Will Rogers 1921 silent movie, "The Roping Fool".
Joan has made over 50 appearances in two productions of the Will Rogers Musical and
appeared in the Macy's Annual Thanksgiving day Parade in New York City. She was
featured in the re-