To the majority of you Woodsy is probably known as one of the more stylish comp skiers and the best SLVSh ref out, but that could well be it. Perhaps you know him personally, in which case you’ll know he’s one of the nicest people on the planet. But again, there the line is drawn. But to many in the UK he’s a hero, the most successful skier in any discipline we’ve ever had, the example for so many kids that a career in skiing, despite being from a largely mountainless, snowless isle, is achievable.
So it’s safe to say that his homecoming tour was met with a fair degree of excitement, and that’s a typically British understatement. The fact that he brought some of his best friends, coincidentally some other huge names in skiing, along for the ride was a hell of a bonus. The tour, hosted by Monster, Planks Clothing and Bawbags was a hit from the dryslope session in Glasgow to the tour end party in London’s Cargo.
The crew arrived on UK shores hanging hard as a result of the previous night’s parties in Annecy. 5 minutes into the tour, Noah Morrison was already being sick out of the mini-bus. The first stop was the infamous Bearsden dryslope, the first dryslope experience of many an uninitiated foreign pro. The session went off with Jossi styling out handplants on the snowflex quarter pipe and sessions on the jump, the rider built rail setup. A great night was rounded off with a signing session, replete with pizza, beer and whisky.
The following morning was spent nursing headaches with full scottish breakfasts, more whisky included, at Edinburgh Docks and exploring the beautiful city and castle before heading south to the second stop at Cas(tleford). The riding session was packed full of kids, many of whom formed Woodsy’s ‘little ducklings’, following him throughout the session and attempting to emulate his tricks. It was also rad to see Woodsy’s OG crew from home show up to ride with him. After the signing session, the night quickly became a messy one, ending at a massive warehouse rave in Leeds where Woodsy and Jonas were reportedly stars of the show.
Day three started off (slowly) at the burnt out skeleton of Woodsy’s home hill, Sheffield Ski Village. It was an eyeopener for the rest of the crew to see where Woodsy got his start skiing. After some pie, mash, gravy and Guinness it was on to the final riding stop of the trip at Tamworth. The turnout was insane, somehow eclipsing the first two stops with everyone from tiny kids to uni students packing the slopes. Everything fell perfectly into place, the riders were stoked, the level of skiing was off the chain and the general consensus was the combo made Tam the stop of the trip.
To round off the tour, the guys spent twenty four hours in London. A media trip on the London eye was bookended by sessions at Southbank, the city’s infamous skate spot. To celebrate a crazy few days the crew had an epic curry on Brick Lane and were delighted to discover that the restaurant was bring your own booze, prompting most of the crew to buy their own bodyweight in beer at the off license opposite. The final stop was the tour end party, to meet with more fans and more importantly to make sure the squad left the UK in the same state as they arrived. Mission accomplished.
Massive shoutout to Sophie Offord for helping me fill in the blanks which resulted from me being sick in bed for most of this trip and Danny Roockley/Josh Fawcett for manning the NS Snap while I was laid out. Also thanks to Planks, Bawbags and Monster for putting this thing on and getting the kids stoked.