This article will be taking a look at the 1959 Dyatlov Pass incident, when a group of hikers met a grizzly and mysterious end during their expedition to the remote Mt Otorten in the Northern Ural Ranges…
The Exciting Expedition
A group of ten students from the the Ural Technical University set off on an exciting expedition in late January, 1959. The university had arranged the trek with an objective of reaching Mount Otorten in the northern Ural Mountains.
A short section of this journey was set to pass through Mount Kholat Syakhl…a mountain that the locals refer to as ‘The Dead Mountain’.
Out of the ten who made up the group of young explorers, only one would return home alive.
A Photographic Journey
The students were warned beforehand that the journey was listed as a category 3 hike – this meant that it was not really suitable for amateurs.
The difficulty did not put any of the group members off, they were young and they felt they would have no problems in reaching their destination.
A day into the trek, and one of the group members fell mysteriously ill. Thankfully there was a village nearby, and the sick member was able to stay behind when the remaining nine carried on with the journey.
The details regarding the remainder of their doomed journey, are captured in photographs recovered from rolls of film found, some log diaries, and forensic evidence.
The Dead Mountain
A few days after the group had left the ill member in the village, bad weather conditions had apparently put them off course, as they were descending The Dead Mountain.
When they realized they had taken the wrong route, they decided to set up camp on the mountainside…but ignored the more wooded area nearby which would have offered much more protection from the elements.
When this camp was being set up, one of the final photographs was snapped by one of the group members. It was around the time of 5pm, on Feb the 1st, 1959.
What happened next…remains a mystery.
The Dyatlov Pass Mystery
The group of hikers was led by a student named Igor Dyatlov, and he had made arrangements that stated he would inform authorities of their success or failure on February the 12th. He did point out that there could well be a few days delay on this date, due to the group’s slow progress.
By the 20th of February, the local authorities were concerned – they had not been contacted by Igor Dyatlov.
A professional search team was put together, and six days later they eventually manged to locate the group’s camping tent. It was badly damaged, and full of their supplies.
The tent seemed to have been torn from the inside, and there was a trail of footprints leading to the wooded area below the campsite.
They followed the footprints to a burned out campfire where they discovered two bodies – both in their underwear.
Another three bodies were then discovered, including that of group leader, Igor Dyatlov. They were also semi-naked, and seemed to have been heading back towards the original campsite.
The remaining bodies were found months later in a ravine.
These final gruesome discoveries were shrouded in mystery…
For a start – three of the bodies carried fatal internal injuries…but no surface wounds (Fractured chests and fractured skulls).
The forth body was female, and discovered in a nearby stream. Her lips, tongue and part of her skull had been removed!
All four of the bodies seemed to be dressed in clothing that they had stolen off the other group members. Traces of radioactivity were found on this clothing, and the bodies had a strange tan to their skins.
The Dyatlov Pass Theories
Most skeptics believe that a snow slide was behind the mysterious incident. It had hit their campsite and they had all fled the tent in a panic…only to die in the cold environment.
Many ufologists believe that the radiation is key to this mystery, that the group were victim to an alien encounter. It is noted that several other hiking groups in the area reported seeing strange lights in the sky.
The Russian authorities claimed that the lights were nothing more than missile testing exercises…but this explanation did not convince everyone.
Another theory involves a government testing area in the mountain – did the group wander into this area…and end up being killed off by some sort of ‘experiment’?
Now it’s over to you…
There are several popular theories linked to this incident – Yeti attack, government testing, UFO’s…
Please leave your opinions in the comment section below.