New Lake District felltop assessor Zac Poulton pictured at the South Pole

New Lake District felltop assessor Zac Poulton pictured at the South Pole

A top adventurer and Everest summiteer has joined the team that will provide safety information for winter hillwalkers in the Lake District.

Mountaineer Zac Poulton is the latest recruit to the national park’s squad of felltop assessors who make the daily ascent to England’s third-highest mountain Helvellyn.

Along with existing assessors Jon Bennett and Graham Uney, Mr Poulton will provide daily weather reports and advice for outdoors enthusiasts heading for the Lake District fells between December this year and April 2018.

Mountain instructor Mr Poulton has 25 years’ experience to draw upon, having led worldwide expeditions including peaks in Antarctica, Greenland and the Himalaya, with a successful Mount Everest summit to his name.

Originally from Australia, he now lives in Caldbeck in Cumbria and has called the Lake District home for 17 years, having moved to the area due to his love of the great outdoors.

Mr Poulton said: “I’ve always known of the role of felltop 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 daily their treks, the national park’s mountain experts also deliver winter skills courses to those keen to tackle the fells during the winter months, an area of expertise that the new recruit is particularly keen to bring to the role.

He said: “In recent years I’ve spent much of my time working with TV production teams to advise on mountain safety when filming in potentially dangerous settings, so I’m pleased to be applying that experience to this role.”

Most notably Mr Poulton has consulted on Planet Earth II, Countrywise, Sport Relief and even Yorkshire Dales and The Lakes, a programme that featured his now colleague Jon Bennett talking about the felltop assessor role.

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 be kitting up in December, ready to provide live weather and walking condition reports via the Lake District Weatherline service and their Twitter followers @lakesweather.

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