Mountaineer Zac Poulton is swapping the Himalaya for the Lake District in a role aimed at keeping walkers safe on the Cumbrian fells
Each winter, a team of experienced professionals make daily climbs of Helvellyn, one of the Lake District’s highest mountains, to provide weather updates and safety advice for walkers and climbers. This year they have a new team member.
The new season runs from December 2017 until April 2018. Existing team members Jon Bennett and Graham Uney will be joined by instructor Zac Poulton, the newest Fell Top Assessor to be hired by the Lake District National Park.
Zac has 25 years of experience to draw upon, having led expeditions worldwide. He’s climbed peaks in Antarctica, Greenland and the Himalaya, including Everest. Zac lives in Caldbeck and has called the Lake District home for 17 years. He’s originally from Australia.
Zac said: “I’ve always known of the role of Fell Top Assessors and thought it’d be a job I’d really enjoy so close to home, so I’m really looking forward to joining Jon and Graham next season. I’m very familiar with Helvellyn and I’m looking forward to helping walkers explore the Lakes safely.”
As well as their daily ascents of Helvellyn, the National Park’s mountain experts deliver winter skills courses for those keen to head into the fells during the winter months. This is an area of expertise Zac is particularly keen to bring to the role, having spent much time in recent years working with TV production teams as a mountain safety advisor. Zac has consulted on Planet Earth II, Countrywise, and Sport Relief amongst others.
Jon Bennett said: “The safety of our visitors is our top priority so we’re thrilled to have someone as experienced as Zac joining the team. His extensive background in mountain training and expeditions is just what we were looking for and we’re now all set for the new season.”
The new team of assessors will start their mission in December, ready to provide live weather and walking ondition reports via the Lake District Weatherline service, and to their avid Twitter followers @lakesweather.
Header image: Zac Poulton at the South Pole.