David Lesh found guilty in violation of National Forest Service regulations


Keystone Resort to Open for the 2021-22 Winter Season Friday, Oct. 22

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.– David Lesh, an outdoor apparel company owner, was found guilty of violating National Forest Service regulations for snowmobiling at Keystone Resort, which was closed in April 2020. 

The Court found that as part of an ad campaign for his company, Lesh rode a snowmobile at Keystone Resort when it was closed in April 2020 and then posted pictures of his activities on Instagram. 

The Court found that posting the photos on Instagram constituted selling or offering for sale merchandise or conducting unauthorized work activity on National Forest Service lands.  

When Lesh entered the resort, the resort was closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and Keystone employees had used plows to create snow barriers in front of terrain park features to make them inaccessible. 

Signs were posted around Keystone indicating that the area was closed. On April 25, 2020, snowmobile tracks were found looping around a ski jump, and a utility shed had been entered with a snow shovel removed. Snowmobile tracks indicated that snowmobiling had occurred in the area, in the terrain park, through the Erickson Bowl and down a trail on National Forest Service lands. 

Pictures were posted on Lesh’s Instagram account on April 25, 2020, featuring an individual wearing outdoor apparel jumping a red and black snowmobile off of a jump at Keystone. The caption initially read,  “Solid park sesh, no lift ticket needed.” 

A bench trial in this matter occurred in Grand Junction earlier this year on Aug. 5. Lesh has been found guilty of violating 36 C.F.R. Sections 261.14 and 261.10(c).  Both offenses are misdemeanors. 

He will be sentenced by the Court at date yet to be determined.  

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