The Forest For The Trees

Guest Blogger: Harlee Lyman

The ultimate idea behind this Bus Life adventure is to live simply and deliberately… with purpose and without the unnecessary. Following Thoreau to Walden Pond is great on paper but it seems a little too short sighted and antisocial for someone as fun as Brock. The Bus Life he is creating is every bit as magical as Thoreau’s shack on the shore but has the added feature of being mobile and having a bottle opener for a drawer handle.

It seems that Brock is a guy with some hard bark. I have known him for a few years and I am not sure that I have come across someone who is as self-motivated as he is. While this is an admirable characteristic in my friend, it doesn’t do me any favors. Brock is self-employed and therefore has the awesome opportunity to set his own hours. In his mind that means getting up, on his own when the sun comes up. I, on the hand, work nights and if I am up before noon something is going on.

It was only 11 AM and Brock and his brother Tony had already been very busy welding, painting, and mounting roof racks. After a beautifully made turkey sandwich we got down to the real task of the day, creating firewood.

After some discussion about the placement of cameras and a couple of words about safety we started up the chainsaws and felled a dead aspen. Brock bucked logs down to a manageable 20 inches while Tony split the rounds with an axe. The Butterfield Boys made quick work of the logs and their pile was impressive.

After only a few close calls and a couple of hours it was time for me to quit and head back to Salt Lake. Brock thanked me for my help then picked up his axe and headed back down the hill. There was still sunlight and there was still stuff to get done. I would like to think that Brock enjoys the simplicity of working hard and seeing his labor blossom into his vision. More than that I think that he worked as hard as he did because he just doesn’t want to freeze this winter. That is pretty simple.

Put your Muck Boots on. It's time to go to work.


Brock sawing logs without sleeping on the job.



Brock kept talking about his new Wellie Muck Boots... "Best work boot I've ever owned", he claims.



Tony Butterfield wanted to split when he came over to help and told him we'd be chopping wood.



Nothing like a little heavy metal bumping in the Big Turtle Shell while stacking wood.

SCS Wraps installs bus wrap!

We rallied the bus from Salt Lake City, UT to Bozeman, MT where SCS Wraps installed the bus wrap. These guys went above and beyond to make sure the wrap was not only stylish but installed correctly. SCS Wraps is one of the few 3M Certified when it comes to installing. Thanks for having us SCS!

 Pictures and video of the install below.





Paul putting the professional touches on the install.



We tried to talk SCS into letting us take the new sleds they just wrapped...



Gotta drink the local beers when out of town! Red Lodge Ales.



Co-pilot and future Bus Life Adventure guest blogger Liz Eshleman taking in the scenery.



We were welcomed by snow after getting back to Park City, UT. Let it snow!

Buy a welder, learn how to weld, fabricate a snowmobile deck and paint the bus.


Sounds simple right? That's what I had envisioned in my mind but as with all things there were a few hiccups that we had to overcome. Because we had chopped the last four feet of the bus, we were left with four feet of chassis to weld onto and create the ultimate "fun deck" as we call it. The deck will be used for snowmobiles, four wheelers, stand up paddle boards (SUP), bikes, etc. Anything that is required for life in the bus lane.

We had to purchase most of the steel but I was able to salvage some steel from the bus seats that we used for the shelves under the "fun deck" to hold a generator, propane, wood, tools, etc.


Main frame welded and painted. Now to fabricate some shelves. Mario Mainini blazing welds.


Storage coming together.


Next we decided to give the bus a face lift with a paint job. We went with flat white to reduce heat in summer with flat black accents.

Paint on!


Primed up.


Bus needed some flat black to break up all the white. Racing stripes.


Bruce with a nice face lift.


Working on the bus everyday for over a month finally got to me.

I was at the point where I was pretty burnt out. I needed a break so that I could clear my head and come back fresh. I called up my buddy Ross Downard from Mtn Ranks and we headed into the woods to ride some of the great downhill trails that Park City, UT has to offer. Lily Pad Downard from "Lily Shreds" (Ross' jack russell) joined us and put this little edit together.