Stage 3: Timbersbrook to Kidsgrove — Gritstone Trail
Dan Hobson planned a hike.
March 16, 2020
The final stage is a leisurely hike that explores stunning countryside and the magnificent Mow Cop.With 9.9 miles (15.9 km) of distance and 725 feet (221 m) of uphill, this is a short-and-sweet route which makes for a perfect finish after two tough previous stages. The trail starts at Timbersbrook Picnic Area, once the site of a large silk mill, and crosses fields to the Biddulph Valley Way, which you follow for 1.5 miles (2.4 km).You then climb Nick i’th’Hill, a dip in the ridge that is thought to have been a melt water drainage channel in the last ice age.You hike through Willocks Wood, a pretty woodland composed of Oak and Silver Birch, and continue the gradual ascent to Mow Cop.Situated on a moorland ridge, Mow Cop is a village and hilltop summit which are both dominated by the striking remains of an old castle folly. Here, you get a spellbinding panoramic view of the Staffordshire moorlands and the Cheshire Plain.It is a long and gradual descent to the Trent and Mersey Canal and the Macclesfield Canal, followed by a short step to Kidsgrove, where this stage finishes. There is not a great deal of accommodation in Kidsgrove but the town has good public transport links, including a train station, so you can reach better-served towns.
March 23, 2020