We undertook this 92 mile walk from Mow Cop to Kinver Edge in March 2010. We used “The Staffordshire Way; Long Distance Footpath” published by Staffordshire County Council and The Countryside Commision as our guide. I found this difficult to find, and I note that at the time of writing (25th January 2012) the edition that we used cannot be found on Amazon. It can, however, be ordered through Staffordshire County Council, price £5.00. In 2010, the latest edition was “fully revised 1996”! The County Council website and its pricelist do not mention whether a newer edition is now available – there is certainly a desperate need for one!
We also bought Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 scale maps. For our 92 miles we thought that we needed a colossal six maps! – in chronological order: 118, 119, 128, 127, 139, and 138. But in actual fact you do not need 119 and 139. 119 only has about a mile of the walk which is not covered on the adjacent maps, and this is along the Caldon Canal tow path just south of Consall Railway Station. The part of The Way on map 139 is entirely covered by maps 127 and 138.So, tracing the path of The Way through Staffordshire, and lo and behold, we created a question mark! This was most appropriate; when Julia and I started out from Mow Cop on that cool March morning, we had little clue as to what we were taking on, and in retrospect, we were inadequately prepared. At least we had good, comfortable walking shoes. But my anorak was shower proof, not water proof (Julia was more sensible). I had borrowed a 60-litre rucksack off my son, and Julia had a small back pack, having recently undergone minor surgery on her left shoulder. We had numerous maps and a guide, but no compass.
Despite all this, we did pretty well. We had amazing luck with the weather, which was an enormous bonus. We had taken a week off work and allowed ourselves six days to complete our hike