Over the last few years, the name David Lesh has circulated around the ski, snowboard, and outdoor enthusiast communities. Lesh is a 35-year-old Coloradan and the owner of an apparel company called Virtika. Virtika has become a huge success and is responsible for Lesh’s fame, but he has become much more than his brand and has amassed nearly 100,000 followers on Instagram.
The name David Lesh first blew up after his incident in Keystone’s Area 51 terrain park. In April 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic first shut everything down, Lesh took his snowmobile to a completely empty Keystone resort for a joyride. He only posted a few pictures from the day, but they sparked massive outrage and ended up sending him to court “on charges of suspicion of illegal use of a snowmobile at a terrain park at Keystone Resort … and using national forest to sell merchandise without a proper permit. Both are petty offenses.” While the rest of the United States was under lockdown orders, Lesh was making a name for himself in the park at Keystone.
Illegally snowmobiling through Area 51 is definitely Lesh’s most notorious moment, however—there are several other comparable incidents. Lesh has posted pictures of him in both Maroon Lake, near Aspen, and in Hanging Lake, one of Colorado’s most popular destinations. Both of these lakes are illegal to enter and have been forever tainted by Lesh’s selfish actions. Reportedly, one or both of the pictures is photoshopped, but Lesh did not admit this until he was condemned by his followers and investigated by the feds. Any press is good press, and Lesh has used this tactic to his advantage.
Another incident that got David Lesh’s name out to the masses was when photographs were released of him snowmobiling Independence Pass over the summer. Lesh was “suspected of riding his snowmobile in fragile, off-limits terrain on Independence Pass” in Colorado. At the time, there was no snow on Independence Pass and Lesh was jeopardizing its ecosystem by carelessly riding on soil, flowers, and grasses while endangering animal species. This incident was investigated thoroughly by the Forest Service and written about by several local news outlets. Months before this, Lesh crashed his plane into the Pacific Ocean outside of California.
Almost every single day, Lesh posts Instagram stories of screenshots of hate messages that he receives. Some of them are hilarious and some of them are threateningly serious, but Lesh has claimed that no one has ever personally confronted him. One of David Lesh’s closest friends is Dan Bilzerian. Bilzerian is suggested to be worth around $200 million and has several songs written about him. Together, Lesh and Bilzerian have become social media icons whose personal lives are comedically documented throughout the day. Virtika has become one of the top, most well-known winter sports apparel brands, and using that leverage Lesh has made a (not-so-good) name for himself.