Last week saw British freeski superstar James 'Woodsy' Woods back on home turf to shred the dry-slopes and indoor domes that he grew up on for the first time in years.
As the UK's most successful freeskier of all time, Woodsy has spent the last few years following the snow and the competition circuit around the globe. So it's fair to say that when the news broke that he would be back on home soil to shred with the next generation of fridge kids the excitement levels were running at an all time high.
Add in another six huge names as well and the stage was set for the Only Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour to go down in the books as an absolute banger!
The local kids get ready to drop. Photo: Neil McGrain
With such a stacked crew of riders including Jossi Wells, Mcrae Williams, Vincent Gagnier, Noah Morrison, Jonas Hunkziker & Wacko Wells it's no surprise that they arrived into the UK in true superstar fashion after a long night of partying in Annecy. But their hangovers were shocked into oblivion as they arrived in Bearsden, Glasgow for the first stop of the tour and were greeted by the mass of energetic kids all eagerly waiting to watch them shred dry-slope for the very first time.
Woodsy stokes out the kids as he waits to drop at the top of the slope. Photo: Neil McGrain
Woodsy of course felt immediately back at home and quickly led the charge as the rest of the crew found their feet on the plastic fantastic. As always, the locals were ripping harder than anyone else and soon enough the level of riding was through the roof. Mini sessions started popping up all over the slope, with Jossi giving the locals a run for their money on the quarter pipe and Wacko showing the racer's how it's done with his line through the gates to the huge rail transfer. But the real highlight of the night was final rapid fire over the jump, lead out by a huge backflip from the main man Woodsy.[half] [/half] Woodsy leads out the final train at Bearsden and shred the course at Castleford. Photos: Neil McGrain & Joe Hides
The following day the crew headed to Edinburgh for a slap up Scottish breakfast and a quick visit to the castle to feed their Game of Thrones addictions before hitting the road for the second stop of the tour at Snozone, Castleford. This was Woodsy's home from home for years and where he first honed his rail skills. As soon as he hit the slope it was clear to see that nothing had really changed and once again he led from the front and quickly got down to shredding the course.
Woodsy shreds his indoor home of Cas. Photo: Joe Hides
As always their was a trail of small kids following the crew around the slope and everywhere else they went. But what was even more awesome to see was the huge collection of old faces from days gone by that had also gathered to try and catch a few more laps with their old friend Woodsy. Hot laps were had, snapchat stories were filled and in the blink of an eye another sick session was in the books.
Getting posters signed by the man himself. Photo: Neil McGrain
The following day, Woodsy took the crew to his hometown of Sheffield and after some proper British pub grub with a side of Henderson's relish they headed to the remains of the Ski Village to see where Woodsy first learnt to ski. Unfortunately, nowadays it's hard to imagine the thriving scene that was once the driving force behind freesking in the UK.
The crew checks out the remains at Sheffield Ski Village. Photos: Josh Birch
The tour then headed on to its third and final stop at the SnowDome in Tamworth where the small enclosed park and the quick fire laps meant it was the best atmosphere yet. The entire crew were thirsty for as much indoor shredding as possible and the locals weren't far behind. As always the event finished with a chance to meet the riders, grab some swag and get an autograph up in the bar. The riders were quickly swamped once again by stoked out kids and parents alike, posters were signed and photos taken.
Woodsy and Jossi shred the slope at Tamworth before heading inroodrs to sign posters. Photos: David Karvay
The following day, with all the riding stops complete the whole crew headed to London for a whitlestop tour of the capitals sights, which included a trip on the eye, skating at Southbank, riding in a black cab, a curry on Brick lane and a night out in Shoreditch.
The crew check out the streets of London. Photos: Josh Birch
The crew all left early the following morning feeling very much like they had when they first arrrived in Glasgow a few days earlier but having had the full British experience!!
For more action from the tour just search the hastag #MadDogsTour or head over to our Facebook Page and check out the live streams from all three events.