David Lesh is also under investigation for riding a snowmobile on closed lands.
The U.S. Forest Service has rules in place to prevent swimming at the picturesque Hanging Lake due to the area's sensitive environmental chemistry, which can be disrupted by human contact. Signs around the lake are clear that swimming is not allowed. However, David Lesh seemingly ignored those signs and rules for an Instagram post.
Lesh shared a very controversial image on his Instagram on June 10, and he has since received tons of backlash online. In the photo, Lesh can be seen standing on the log that sits along the lake.
"We are aware of the social media posts related to Hanging Lake," said the U.S. Forest Service in a statement. "We take this seriously and our law enforcement is investigating. We appreciate all the concern and information we have received from the public about this case."
Lesh is no stranger to being in hot water with the law. Not only is he under federal investigation for the Hanging Lake stunt, but he is also being investigated for riding a snowmobile on closed lands at Keystone's terrain park in April—something he also boasted about on social media. That incident comes a year after he was caught riding a snowmobile near Independence Pass in an off-limits area. Lesh appeared in U.S. federal court on Tuesday and agreed to pay a $500 fine, as well as do 50 hours of public service, for the first snowmobile stunt in July 2019.
Back in 2014, he was cited for hitting a moose with his car and then arrested that same year for setting 25 grocery carts on fire in Boulder.
"There are rules for a reason," said Lisa Langer, a director of tourism in Glenwood Springs. "And especially for someone running an outdoor clothing company, they should be conscientious about things and not be causing more harm than good."
Lesh owns the Virtika clothing company based in Denver. The shop also posted the Hanging Lake photo to its Instagram page.
What do you think about the controversial photo at Hanging Lake? Share your thoughts in the comments below.