The Dyatlov Pass Incident – Part 2

August 1, 2013 6:00 pm

So, a quick recap. Nine Russian skiers died under mysterious circumstances while camping in the Russian Ural mountains. The set up camp on”Dead Mountain” and sometime after they’d settled in for the night they cut or ripped open their tents from the inside and fled out into the freezing conditions. They all perished.

The team had originally told their colleagues they would be back by the 12th of February but later on before they left Dyatlov has stated that he expected to be later, so when the group failed to arrive on this date not much attention was paid to it.

Dyatlov Pass

It wasn’t until nearly three weeks after their deaths, on the 20th February the management of the institute dispatched a search party and only because they were under pressure from the friends and relatives of the ski group members. After five days and an initial failure to find the skiers military and civilian search parties got involved with the search and helicopters and planes are also used to scour the not easily accessible terrain. The pilot of a plane made the first sighting and the searchers find the badly damaged tent on the eastern slope of Kholat Syakhl. A trail of footsteps lead them to the edge of some nearby woods and to a large pine tree where they find the remains of a fire and the first two bodies, those of Krivonishenko and Doroshenko. The pair are buried under some snow, shoeless and dressed only in their underwear.

Dyatlov, Slobodin and Kolmogorov were all found where they lay with Slobodin found to have received a 17cm skull fracture. Traces of blood were found close to the body of Kolmogorov but no evidence that it was Slobodin’s has ever been established. The second group is found buried in the ravine under about four meters of snow. Dubinina is found to have a symmetrical fracture of several ribs one of which may have pierced her heart as well as a missing tongue and oral cavity. Zolotarev is found to have several broken ribs on the right side. Many other sources talk about discolouration in their skin, radiation contamination on parts of their clothing and other such weird facts, but so far these elements, given the occupations of the members of the ski team are sometimes considered not relevant to the incident.

The official Soviet statement on the incident was as follows.

“As there was no evidence of a guilty party the reasons for the actions of the ski-team and their subsequent injuries is unknown. All that can be said is that they were the victims of a compelling force.”

the dyatlov pass incidentNot exactly comprehensive stuff is it. There are many theories about what happened to these people ranging from fairly feasible explanations such as the “fear of avalanche theory” or even the unusual but completely feasible “Infrasound theory” to the down right ridiculous, for example, mad Russian death squads, toxic snow, alien attacks, secret soviet weapons testing and the like. Most rely on dubious elements of the events and cannot explain other occurrences that took place. The “fear of avalanche theory” for example ticks of most of the boxes but when it comes down to it, photographs taken by the search party reveal the risk of avalanche where they were at the time was extremely low and as competent skiers you would have expected them to have known this when they left surely?

The most feasible in my opinion is the “Infrasound theory” due to the evidence of old radar equipment and such being found in the area. Infrasound is a sound that is lower in frequency than the normal level for human hearing and one study has suggested that it may cause feelings of fear or awe in human beings. Justifying the reasons why the group cut open their tents in the first place. This is the most important part of understanding what happened to these people I believe as knowing what made them flee in the first place could reveal more about their behaviour afterwards. After the incident a doctor confirmed that all the injuries sustained were consistent with a group of terrified people stumbling around frantically in the dark. We may never know everything about what happened to these people. But, maybe one day we may discovered why they were so overwhelmed with fear they felt they had to rip out and flee.

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