Out of the Cellar

It’s 4 weeks since I hopped my way out of the Potato Cellar.

Support 11 225x300 Out of the Cellar

Getting out and about

The knee is slowly improving. I’ve regained all 140 degrees of movement and I’m getting faster, I can now use the pedestrian crossing without being tooted!  It’s still rather chatty while walking and rolling over in bed is guaranteed to disturb my sleep :(

On the practical side the Insurance payout has come through. CGU were very fair and made the process as simple and hassle free as possible. That along with my agency quickly placing me in a 4 month contract have helped enormously to alleviate some pressure.

After I could actually speak without breaking into coughing fits I was able to meet with my sports psychologist. Debriefing with Adam and the validation of my accident from leading Everest commentator Alan Arnette really helped me come to terms with the accident.

Support 225x300 Out of the Cellar

Support of a different kind

Family and friends have been helping with the shopping and dropping in with meals and beautiful flowers to brighten my day but Alan’s article followed by an Interview with Ali Clarke, ABC Adelaide Radio, resulted in messages of support from all around the world. I’m truly left speechless at the kindness out there. I’ve received messages of encouragement and commiserations and shared experiences. Kathy and I have a friendly comp to see who can get back hiking first :)

One email in particular from San Francisco has challenged me to re-envision my plans.

The thing that hurt most, far more than my knee or hands, wasn’t not summitting per se, it was the lost opportunity, losing the platform to promote girls rights, to encourage girls young (and old) to chase their dreams and the opportunity with CFS to raise funds to outfit the Suryodaya classrooms. And in the back of my mind I’d set the challenge to somehow raise the funds to build their next 4 classrooms.

Cheryl has challenged me to “Take your ‘Potato’ game and climb out of the cellar to hope and back into the light”.  Now I just have to work out what my new Potato Game will look like. At the moment I have no idea, but I can assure you I’m going to take the lemons or in my case Potatoes and make the best Potato Pie I can.

I’ve been asked repeatedly the $100,000 question: Will I return for a fourth attempt?

Timing and finances are the limiting factors. It’s still too early to know the consequences of the injury. Can I realistically recover and be Everest fit in 43 weeks?? and of course how will I fund it in that time-frame. If anyone has a crystal ball, give me a call :)

Anyway it won’t be my 4th, as the Ultra Sound Technician said, this was not my 3rd attempt on Everest, this one didn’t count.
This was just a walk in the park with a scenic flight out………..and who am I to argue with her?



PS Narelle and Luke at ABC Radio Adelaide have excelled in the spud puns

“Did you hear the one about the #Adelaide lady who tried to climb Mount Everest but fell down a potato cellar? Lynette Trott has kept her sense of humour, as she told Ali Clarke how it all went ‘down’ (sorry). Catch up here https://ab.co/2J2Lum1

“No chip on this shoulder, Trotty keeps her humour after potato cellar foils her third attempt at Everest.”

Ember's Everest Escapade: Cooeee from EBC

Sharing such an important day with Dawa and Penny

Sharing such an important day with Dawa and Penny

Ember BC Pennys Tent 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Cooeee from EBC

Penny's Tent is very comfy

While Trotty has been facing her challenges at home, together the team and I have been facing the continuing challenge of climbing higher and higher, as our bodies slowly adapt. I’ve learnt to drink more water than gum leaves give me, otherwise I get a headache.

Everyone has taken turns to give me a ride in their backpacks and I’ve found my favourite spot in each person’s tent here at Base Camp. In Penny’s tent I have a new friend Kiwi Bear and books to read in my own chair. I’m one very lucky and cared for koala.

I really understand now that no one can achieve their goals on their own.

One very special ceremony I was included in, was the Team Puja. We wouldn’t consider standing upon Chomolungma without asking her permission and receiveing a blessing from the Lama.

taking turns 1 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Cooeee from EBC

Taking turns to carry me

taking turns 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Cooeee from EBC

Enjoying the view

The views of Everest on the hike in were spectacular but daunting. It’s much taller than my favourite gum tree in Trotty’s backyard!
Sitting here at Base Camp I remember her words. She warned me not to think about the summit yet, as it can be overwhelming. Just take it one day at a time.
Most dreams seem to be like that. The end Goal is HUGE!! but break it down into each day’s tasks……that I know I can do!



Keep your Spirits High: a week on

RISK by Anon

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach for another is to risk involvement.
To expose your ideas, your dreams,
before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To believe is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.

This week I’ve wept, laughed, had to reach out for support from those I love, all because I exposed my ideas, dared to dream, lived that dream, believed in myself and tried so hard.

Gloomy Goodbye 150x150 Keep your Spirits High: a week on

Gloomy departure

Sunny welcome Home

Sunny welcome Home

I left Nepal under a very dark cloud and arrived home to beautiful sunshine. Even the Customs staff made me feel welcome assisting the Singapore staff to wheel me and my luggage out to my loved ones.

But the weather reflected my emotions. That beautiful day quickly turned into a dirty high fire danger day. The smell of burnt toast with a touch of Eucalyptus filled the air as I headed into the physio to start my recovery.

I kept trying to focus on things to be grateful for: I hadn’t hit my head, the rehab will only be a matter of weeks, I got to deliver the SACA cricket equipment to the kids….. but the list quickly petered out as I’d fall back into the cellar with a very unhelpful, self pitying “it’s not fair”.

Care Bear 150x150 Keep your Spirits High: a week on

Care Bear from my Niece & Beautiful Sister in Law

Chiros Recovery Pack 150x150 Keep your Spirits High: a week on

Sam my Chiro's Rehab Pack

But I was tired, only a handful of hours sleep since Tuesday 4:00am. Finally Thursday night I slept.

Sleep has definitely helped my perspective not to mention the Care Bear arriving in the post, the Rehab Pack from Sam my Chiro**, the many phone calls and kind messages of support. So has positive practical actions. Starting the insurance claim process has lifted a great weight. Next week I’ll start job hunting.

It’s still a roller-coaster but the lows are now higher. I still haven’t worked out what’s next. That will come in time.

For now I just need to take each day as it comes and surround myself with beautiful people who care.

KEEP YOUR SPIRITS HIGH   Lyrics Patrick McMahon
So don’t give up until your dreams come true
And your heart will answer when you want it to”

I assure you I won’t be giving up.



** Prior to leaving I’d mentioned to Sam that when starting on “My Way to Everest” there was only one type of Tim Tam and now there’s a whole range I’ve never tasted! He clearly remembered!
My question to Sam was “I have a snotty nose, the Khumbu cough and a bung leg, all of which I know how to fix but what do I do for a Diabetic Coma?”
His answer: “Go climb a mountain”
That put the sunshine back into my day :)

Ember's Everest Escapade: Day 1 without Trotty

EEE 4. Penny 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Day 1 without Trotty

Penny provided a snug place to watch the mountains go by

EEE 5. Blessed 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Day 1 without Trotty

My blessed Shrundi strings

It’s day one without Trotty and the Team have kept me busy. We climbed ever higher, each step taking us closer to our dream, the summit of Everest.

I wanted to show girls in Nepal and Australia that we can chase our dreams. And Robin is doing the same for girl scouts in the USA.  So I’m thinking this whole dream thing is border-less.

Where ever you are in the world let me know what your Everest is and what you’re doing to achieve it. I’m excited we can share our journeys together, all of us.

EEE Robin1 150x150 Embers Everest Escapade: Day 1 without Trotty

Big Aussie Coooeee to the Girl Scouts in the USA

And we can even share how scary it is sometimes.
This is my first day without Trotty and I was a bit scared, but having great team mates to support me got me through. No dreams are achieved entirely on your own. I know, I met Team Trotty and there were a lot of them helping her get here. And I know they’ll be helping her get through this setback.

Time to crawl into my sleeping bag, its been a big exciting day



Ember Goes Solo

EEE 1. the hand over 150x150 Ember Goes Solo

The hand over

EEE 2. Robins bkpk 150x150 Ember Goes Solo

Her new pouch

My journey has ended but Ember’s hasn’t.

As soon as I introduced her to the team they made her the 8th member of our Expedition Team. So when I tumbled into the potato cellar…..can anyone actually read that with a straight face? :) …. there was no question of Ember ending her journey. The team rallied round and vowed to carry her to the summit.

She snuggled into Robin’s backpack pouch and set off on her own to show girls, young and old, that they can chase their dreams even when faced with the obstacles life throws at us.

EEE 2. the team at KJ 150x150 Ember Goes Solo

The Team rally to support Team Member #8 and Farewell #7

EEE 3. setting of on her own adventure 150x150 Ember Goes Solo

Farewell Ember, Climb safe.

My last view of Ember before I was bundled into the Helicopter



Keep Your Spirits High

“When the world outside has blown a hole right through your pride
Keep it going, don’t say die, keep your spirits high”
Lyrics Patrick McMahon

The hole is crevasse sized! and I’m struggling to keep my spirits high right now.

Normally when I post about the setbacks I wait until I’ve come out the other side and show the whole journey. Today I’ve decided to share with you how it feels right here “at the bottom of the cellar” so to speak. Right now I have no idea what the other side will look like or when it will be.

When I speak to groups I always say:

“I don’t define myself by my climbing. If somebody said ‘Trotty, mate, it’s all over, don’t get me wrong  I’d be disappointed, there’d be a few tears, maybe a few choice words, but then I’d look back at what I’ve achieved”

Well I’m either a hypocrite or more likely its just way too early in the process. I definitely underestimated the number (litres) of tears and there were more that a few choice words, I actually got quite angry briefly. Right now I’m feeling gutted, shattered.

I feel that I’ve let so many people down:
The people who have supported me, my family, friends, Team Trotty, SACA, CFS, Torch.
And more devastatingly the people I was trying to support, Plan, the kids, Dementia DownUnder
and even more humiliatingly the thought of the people who will gleefully have a sense of satisfaction in my failure “See I knew she couldn’t do it, Who did she think she was?”

I know we’re not supposed to care what other people think, but you know what? Right now it sucks.

In my heart I know the poem “Risk” by Anon is right:

“Risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing and is nothing”

I had to rebuild my life at 30, I just have to do it again at 50. Difference is, this time, I know I can do it…….But right now that doesn’t make it any less scary or empty………I will get back up and pull myself out of this hole….Oh right I did that bit already :)

I have to find some humour in this, so who can come up with the best spud joke?

xx the Couch Potato

The Dream is Over but it's a World 1st

Trotty in the cellar with the potato 150x150 The Dream is Over but its a World 1st

Trotty in the cellar with the potato

Cant fault the care1 150x150 The Dream is Over but its a World 1st

In hospital. Can't fault the care.

I’m in hospital in Kathmandu, eating as many potatoes as I can as revenge.

Friday afternoon, after a beautiful morning walk from Namche to Khumjung, chatting with Namgel (Dawa’s brother) much of the way, we settled into the tea-house. I was in and out many times, back and forth to my room, checking if my duffle had arrived, to the toilet. But my last trip to the loo brought disaster. I returned through the door, turned to close it but it was latched open, turned back to continue into the room and my next conscious thought was laying on my back in a black cave…. and Pain….excruciating pain.

I had fallen into the potato cellar in the floor, just inside the door, that had been opened to collect dinner. The menu is now Mashed Potato ONLY!

Bruises are still appearing all over, the hands while the most painful and not usable for 24 hours are superficial, there is a chip (pun intended) off my right hip but the Knee is the Dream Killer. I am just grateful it wasn’t my head, face or spine.

The professionalism of Adventure Consultants came to the fore.

Dr Sophie was fetched and jumped into action. Dawa and Namgel appeared from nowhere and never left my side.

Rob got the Logistic Ducks all in a row,  Insurance, helicopter evacuation etc

Lydia had me packed and I don’t mean everything stuffed in my duffle. No she had it separated as I would need it: Travel clothes for cold 6am mountain start and 8am hot Kathmandu landing; Hospital bag; valuables. Then made me repeat back what was where (remember I’m, if not still in shock, not fully with it). This proved to be invaluable particularly given how immobile I was.

Then they dealt with a very emotional, gutted me.

Good Samaritans Sharon John Dawa1 150x150 The Dream is Over but its a World 1st

Good Samaritans Sharon, John, Dawa

Reality hits as team leaves without me 150x150 The Dream is Over but its a World 1st

Reality hits as team leaves without me

My team members and the Trekking team went above and beyond the call. Getting me to bed, even taking me to the toilet in the middle of the night.

All the while Caroline was working the Kathmandu end and was with me every step of the way only leaving to get us food.

Since I started this I’ve been released and back at the Hotel, with a flight home booked for Tuesday.

All over as bundled in for Heli Evac 150x150 The Dream is Over but its a World 1st

All over as bundled in for Heli Evac

I always said I’d be the first person form my house, in my street, in my suburb to summit Everest, well that’s gone but now I have a legitimate World First!! I’ve confirmed no-one else has missed a summit by falling in a potato cellar :)


From a rather bruised and battered


Ember's Everest Escapade

Ember Dreaming11 300x225 Embers Everest Escapade

Ember's Dream is to Climb Everest with Trotty

Team Trotty has grown by one and for the first time ever, I won’t be travelling alone. My climbing companion is Ember ……..but wait….I’m skipping ahead.

Let me go back a few weeks. I was visiting Brett at CFS Region 1 HQ to discuss my visit to Plan Nepal’s school construction site and the CFS R1 offer to support the school by raising funds this year to fit out the classrooms with equipment, when we interrupted by an excited squeal.

There was one very determined young koala who had decided, then and there, that she was coming with me. Brett introduced me to Smokey the Koala’s Twin Sister and that was it, she jumped in my car and has been training with me ever since.

But I couldn’t keep calling her “Smokey’s Sister”, she needed a name of her own. The R1 volunteers helped with suggestions but it was when I was practising my speech for an upcoming event that I heard a second squeal. I was talking about Dreams and “finding that “ember” inside you, that you need to fan into a raging fire.” Ember had heard her name. And more than that:

Ember Training 300x225 Embers Everest Escapade
Ember helping pack 300x225 Embers Everest Escapade

She knew that, that’s what she wanted to do in Nepal and here in South Australia. She wants to help young girls to identify that Ember inside and help them to fan it into a raging fire that will allow them to achieve their dreams whatever their “Everest” may be.

21 sleeps to go


Trotty and Ember

The definition of insanity?

My family and friends would probably say climbing mountains!

The other definition is of course doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome.

So this time around it’s a completely different approach.

The main change as you know is that I’m not doing it on my own. You’ve met my coaches through their blogs. They have me working smarter and the rest of my team keep my body going

But there have been 3 other big changes recently. 2 are connected.

AC course1 150x150 The definition of insanity?

JC from AC1 150x150 The definition of insanity?

JC setting up a circuit. Jumar up, Traverse across, Rappel down, over anchor points

This time I’m climbing with the company I’ve always wanted to climb with, Adventure Consultants.
But as you know it’s been a while since I’ve been on a mountain. Talking with Guy Cotter we both agreed that I needed to get my crampons on ice and rock prior to Everest. So in mid January I headed back to NZ, spending 8 days with Adventure Consultants guide Jyamchang (8 times Everest summiter) to work on skills and id weaknesses.

It’s the best thing I could have done to prepare for Everest 2018.

And the 3rd big change?

I’ve always said:
“My sport is 95% mental” and
Everything happens for a reason ….its just that sometimes the Fates are a little slow to let us in on the secret
Well looking at my preparation 99% of it was about the physical. It didn’t take a genius to perform the GAP Analysis did it?
I needed help with the “muscle between the ears”! But for months I had no luck finding the right person.
This is where the Fates were working their tricky, very obscure magic. The Chiro I’d been seeing for years ended up in gaol!! You can imagine the hole this put in my team, I was rocked by it. But don’t forget those Fates. This led me to my new Chiro Sam who is a much better fit with Team Trotty and he ……drumroll please……..led me to Adam. I call him my Psycho Dude!!! but I think he’d prefer Sports Psychologist! He is providing the much needed solution to that Crevasse Sized Gap in my preparation.
And what a difference he has made.

39 sleeps out from Everest 2018 I’m feeling better prepared than I’ve ever been



Silver Linings

Yeah!! I finally found the Silver Lining to The Great Down Dry-cleaning Disaster. Pollyanna would be proud :)

Researching replacement gear was an eye (and wallet!!) opening experience.  I had no idea Technology had changed so much in the last 8 years and I made the “No Brainer” decision to replace all my clothing and equipment except for my 8,000m boots and ice-axe. This was a little “stressful”!! but James at Bogong Equipment brought much needed calm to the process. He spent 3 months working with me on the list and set the timelines.

And it all fell into place.

I hopped a plane to Melbourne and spent 2 full days with James trying on gear. It was an amazing 2 days being surrounded by people with such passion for the outdoors and enthusiasm for sharing their knowledge with anyone who is willing to learn.

GEAR James Bogong1 300x225 Silver Linings

James at Bogong: Job done! Now to box and ship it to Adelaide

And learn I did.  When I said Technology has changed, I mean to the point where I didn’t even recognise some of the layers. Thank goodness I’ll be spending time in NZ to see how the layers and I perform together.

Being of a NON Traditional Athletic build, purchasing gear has always been daunting if not a down right miserable experience. Not so this time. James made the whole process easy and comfortable. Using the storeroom as a change-room was a stroke of genius. No Mirrors!! so I had to assess all items on feel not looks.  Though I can assure you they all had one feel in common HOT! I chose a 40 degree day to try on Down!  Onya!!

I enjoyed the discussions, James’ knowledge vs My experience vs Adventure Consultants recommendations. I trusted James’ opinion, he stood his ground when I was trying to spend money on unnecessary items but more importantly identified issues I hadn’t even thought of. I didn’t realise the glue in my 8,000m boots has a lifespan. Could you imagine if the crampons and soles separated from the boot on the Hill?   …….. and that’s why I don’t buy on line!!  The tips and tricks I learned were in themselves worth the plane ticket.

Now it’s time to sort, check to gear list, pack and triple check to list.

Best Christmas presents ever!

Best Christmas / Birthday ever!

Gear 3 225x300 Silver Linings

This is just my clothing

Happy New Year everyone. Here’s to all of us achieving new heights in 2018



PS I’ll be spending the next 12 weeks walking around the house breaking in my brand new boots