“Dyatlov Pass Incident”
It was January 27th 1959; a group of nine friends from the nearby Ural Polytechnic institute took off on a hiking trip in the Ural Mountains, across the Sverdlovsk Oblast.
Lead by Igor Dyatlov, they set off along a category 3 climb route, which was a welcome challenge for the group of experienced skiers and hikers, and something that they were looking forward to as they posed smiling in group photos throughout the journey. One of the members of the team, Yuri Yudin, got sick and had to turn back a day before the incident. Unbeknownst to him, he would be the only one to escape the tragic fate that awaited the rest of the expedition.
The group accidentally deviated off course and despite intentions to head up to the Ororten Mountain ended up on Kholat Syakhl, which roughly translates as “mountain of the dead”. The weather was getting progressively worse and they were forced to set up camp with the intention of turning back the following morning- unfortunately they never got the chance.
Search parties, police and military set off in hopes of finding the nine lost hikers. Six days later the Dyatlov camp was discovered. The group’s tent was torn from the inside out. The search party followed fresh sets of footsteps to the edge of the forest where they discovered a burned out fire and two corpses wearing only underwear and shoes. The discovery of three more corpses was made nearby, spaced around 150 meters apart.
The authorities concluded that each person appeared as if they were trying to make it back to the campsite, due to the posing of the bodies. The other team members were found further away, under 4 meters of snow near a lake.
It was first suspected that the group had died of hypothermia and exposure, however there was elements contradicting the theory. For example, the bodies were outside and unclothed, two of which had skull damage, and two with chest fractures. A coroner reported that the force needed to cause the impact of such injuries could be likened to the impact made during a car crash.