On February 2, 1959 in the Ural Mountains of Russia nine experienced hikers mysteriously died. Found near Dyatlov Pass, named for the expedition's leader, Igor Dyatlov, the deaths occurred on the east side of the mountain that in Mansi means Mountain of the Dead.
The group originally contained eight men and two women, all of whom were experienced in ski tours, with the intention of reaching Mt. Otorten. On January 27, 1959 the group began their tour to Mt. Otorten but lost a member due to sickness the following day. There were now nine people.
Journals and personal cameras were discovered at their final camping site which made it possible to piece together the route the group had chosen and that had placed them in the infamous pass.
It appeared that as they were trying to clear the pass the weather took a turn for the worse and forced them to lose their way. They set up camp for the night on February 2, 1959 to wait for the storm to subside.
Igor Dyatlov was supposed to send word they had safely returned via telegraph around February 12, 1959. When no message had arrived by February 20, 1959 an emergency search party was put together that eventually involved the police and the army.
On February 26, 1959 the abandoned camp site was finally discovered. The tent was found to be horribly mangled and it appeared as though the group of nine hikers had forcibly cut their way out.
Footprints outside the tent indicated the group had left shoeless and even barefoot. Following the prints led investigators to the edge of a forest where five of the nine bodies were found. Two were without shoes and in their underwear. It would take over two months to find the remaining four bodies.
Originally thought to have died from hypothermia, upon further examination it was found that one of the women was missing her tongue and that three of the hikers had sustained a massive skull fracture and two massive chest fractures. The force of these traumas were said to be similar to traumas sustained in a car crash.
Oddly, there were no visible signs on the surface of the bodies to indicate the internal damage. Reportedly it was as though the trauma inside their bodies was caused by a powerful, unknown pressure. It was even postulated that the internal injuries could not have been caused by a human because the force of it was just too great.
Some of the corpse's skin was a strange orange to brown color and they appeared to have aged prematurely. Some of the victim's clothes were even tested and found to be highly radioactive.
Investigators, in trying to pin down the real cause for these deaths, found it strange that no other footprints were found in the vicinity and that there were no outward signs of a struggle from the victims. It was like they did not have time to defend themselves.
Some believe the incident was a military experiment gone awry and others blame the paranormal. For instance, it was reported that a separate group of hikers located in the general area of those who died spotted bright, orange spheres hovering over the ill-fated site on the night of February 2, 1959.
And in 1990 a former police officer who investigated the incident said he was told to remain quiet about the report of the orange spheres. In an article he wrote he admitted that he himself believed the carnage was somehow connected to and caused by these UFO's.
Dyatlov group Tent
Initially the officials were hesitant to sound an alarm about tourists when they missed their day they were supposed to call. from Vizhay Group of Blinov that was mentioned in the Dyatlov diary on January 24th returned in the middle of February and reported a heavy snowstorm in the area of the Kholat Syakhl and future Dyatlov Pass. In light of this information it was assumed that tourists are spending these extra days somewhere in the safety. Risking lives to make extra miles do get back at the due date made no sense. Head of sport club of UPI, Lev Semenovich Gordo, even lied about receiving a telegram from Dyatlov about the delay to calm parents of Dubinina and Kolevatov. He assumed that in few days the group of Igor Dyatlov is going to make it anyway. Relatives eventually forced to organize a search party by complaining to the local head of the Communist party. Negative publicity was unwanted and actions had to be taken. The head of the military department of UPI, Colonel Georgy Semenovich Ortyukov, took charge of search and rescue party. Many of students volunteered to find look for their lost friends. Several rescue parties were sent to the region on 21st of February. One of these groups were headed by Blinov and another Sogrin. Both groups just returned from their trips and knew the conditions of the region. Another group of Vladislav Karelin was in the area and joined the search effort. Planes took off from Ivdel airport to search for the group from the air.
On February 22nd several prison guards from the IvdelLAG under leadership of captain A.A. Chernischev and another 7 officers of MVD (cops) under command of leutenant Potapov have joined the search. Another three groups were formed in UPI from student volunteers under leadership of Oleg Grebennik, Moises Akselrod and Boris Slobcov. Additionally local mansi hunters volunteered to help and look for the vanished group. Moscow sent several specialists including E.P. Maslenikov, Baskin, Bardin and Schulzhenko.
On February 23rd group of Boris Slobcov was dropped near mount Otarten, a final destination for Dyatlov. The next day on February 24th they reached the mountain and came to conclusion that tourists never made it this far. Students did not find any records, flags or anything else that would indicate recent visit of a group.
On February 25th Boris Slobcov and his group finally discovered the trail of skis that he assumed to be that of Dyatlov. The next day on February 26th they discovered the tent on the slope of Kholat Syakhl. Ironically Slobcov was among those who actually helped to construct the tent three years earlier from two tents, making it longer and larger. He recognized it immediately. Unfortunately no one expected to find the tourists dead so there was no attempt to preserve or record the footprints of people around the Dyatlov Pass. To this day there has been a discussion of exactly how many people were in this pass on that fateful day. However judging by words of the people involved in the search and who took the lower right picture there were definitely 8- 9 tracks of footprints left by tourists who wore almost no footwear. Their feet pressed the snow and this left a characteristic "columns" of pressed snow with a footprint on top. Members of the group walked in a single file with a tall men walking in the back. His footprints partially covered footprints of his friends who walked in front of him. Overall the path gave an impression of organized and uneventful descent down the slope of the mountain. Several trails would deviate from the general direction, but then rejoin the group. Other footprints were also discovered and photographed. It is hard to say if these were left by someone else or rescuers themselves.
The first thing that the rescue party discovered was a tourist tent with the stove that the Dyatlov made by himself. For reasons that are were never answered, the sides of the tent were cut by the tourists. Judging by the number of cuts they were made from inside. It is hard to explain why they chose this strange exit for leaving the tent completely ignoring the entrance. Many of the members were not fully clothed then this happened. Yet, warm clothes, shoes, sweaters, knives and anything that could keep them warm and help survive in Siberian wilderness were abandoned. In fact most of the footwear and clothes were stacked in the middle and edges of the tent. Additionally Boris Slobcov discovered a flash light of Chinese production on the roof of the tent. It laid on a snow cover 5-10 cm in thickness and had no snow on top. He turned on the flashlight. It was in working condition. Students retrieved three photo cameras from the tent, group diary, some alcohol and few minor things. They hurried down the mountain to the campsite that was already established at the base of the mountain. Several mansi natives joined the group. Additionally Egor Semenovich Nevolin, a radioman, joined the search party. At 6pm they radioed back about their discovery on the last campsite of the Dyatlov group. UPI informed them that a large search group with will be delivered by a helicopter to their location. They would also deliver two large military tents for better comfort and security. A detective would join the search and rescue effort with Colonel Ortyukov as well.
Several members started cooking dinner while every one else attempted to find clues about the direction of future searches. They found 710 rubles and railroad tickets for the whole group. Most took this as a sign of a good omen. They assumed that criminals were not involved since they would steal everything of value. During dinner Boris Slobcov raised a toast for the health of his friends and expressed hope that they will be found soon. One of the locals, Ivan Paschin, was less optimistic about prospects of finding everyone alive and suggested that they should probably drink for the dead rather than the living. It was a big mistake. Students took these words as offensive and almost beat up the local for his pessimism. Still no one could believe in the possibility that that group of young women and men can simply perish like that in Siberian Taiga.
27th February- The next morning Yury Koptelov and Michael Scharavin went to look for a new place for a campsite. They explored the valley of the Lozva river when a tall cedar attracted their attention. A fairly even and large area near this cedar could provide the search party a better view of the mountain and surrounding locations. Both men approached the cedar and stopped. Two bodies lay in the snow and remains of the fire were visible near by. Bodies were carefully laid side by side. Snow wasn't very deep in this location due to constant blow of the wind so it became very clear that they found two bodies of the missing group. The first thing that stroke the searching group was the cloths of the dead. They had no shoes and were almost completely naked. Some theories later will blame this on "paradoxical undressing", but we will see later that it had nothing to do with the mental condition of the tourists. Prosecutor of Ivdel, Vasily Ivanovich Tempalov, discovered another body just 400 meters from the cedar. The body of a man laid on the back with his head pointing in the direction of the tent. Students quickly recognized Igor Dyatlov, the head of the group. Mansi hunters with their dogs started to explore the mountain side and quickly discovered the body of Kholmogorova about 500 meters from Dyatlov group. The position of her body pointed in the direction of the tent. It became evident that both tourists actually tried to make way from the tall cedar back to the tent, but didn't make it all the way.
Two Bodies under Cedar. Still unidentified
Bodies of Yuri Krivonishenko and Yuri Doroshenko on the left. On the right are remains of the extinguished fire and a cedar that according to some tourists is still there. Although it is hard to find the exact location today.
Igor Dyatlov (as he was found on the left and cleared snow on the right)
Meanwhile the contents of the tent from the Dyatlov group were removed. This happened chaotically, without any order, photos or even presence of anyone from the law. Students simply removed the objects and attempted to organize belongings by name. We can understand their honest desire to return these things to families of the dead, however in doing so they undermined any research in this area. We have only few testimonies from the people who undertook these actions. Some of them were conflicting and thus more confusing. They discovered that the group was apparently was about to have their dinner. A self made newspaper "Evening Otorten" was also found here. The date was marked as 1st February 1959. One of the unusual and unexpected findings was a skiing pole that with clear cutting marks. Tourists didn't have any extra poles. It is unclear why someone in the right mind would damage the pole on purpose. Among other things tourists also left their footwear. Many had two pairs, one for the actual hike and another, softer one, were used in the tent to keep warm at night. Both pairs were found abandoned. This could be explained that whatever forced them out of the tent came in the time then everyone was changing and preparing for a sleep. Additionally the tent contained several knives and hatchets. These were abandoned too for some reason, although some tourists had knives with them when they left.
Next week of search did not yield any results. Only thing that was found was another Chinese flash light in the valley of Lozva valley. The batteries were dead, but the flash light was in "on" position. On March 2nd three students and two Mansi hunters discovered a camp base in the Auspiya valley. Tourists left some of their food provision and gear to lighten the load (55 kg in total). Additionally there were mandolin of Rustem Slobodin, few clothes, ski shoes and a pair of skis. On the way back tourists intended to retrieve these things. None of these things were taken however.
On March 3rd many of the students returned home, since they had to return to their studies. Moscow specialists also left. Their report is somewhat short and inconclusive. They could not explain the reason why would several normal people would abandon the tent in the middle of the night without shoes and little protection from the wind.
Left: digging around the tent Right: Michael Sharavin (left), Vladimir Strelnikov, Boris Slobcov, Vyacheslav Chalizov (right holding a map) Photo by V. Brusnicin (25th February 1959)
On March 5th the body of Rustem Slobodin was recovered. He was discovered on the same general line from a cedar to a tent. His position was in between bodies of Dyatlov (180 meters away) and Kholmogorova (150 meters). He was the only member of the group that fell while fairly warm. The head from his body melted the snow that subsequently froze forming a frozen bed underneath the dead body. His watches recorded 8:45.
The cedar had its lower branches cut. Later inspection showed that part of human skin and blood was still lodged in the bark crevices. Bodies of both tourists were laying side by side near an extinguished fire. Part of their clothes were carefully cut off. Pants of Yuri Krivonishenko were left in place. They showed certain degree of radioactivity. After initial discovery of five bodies remaining four tourists were found almost half a mile away in May of the same year. This group managed to dig a den in the snow to keep themselves warm. These bodies had broken ribs, broken skull and in case of Lyudmila Dubinina a missing tongue. Above you see a tent that belonged to the group.
Judging by the type of helicopters and their markings there were at least three machines involved in search and rescue efforts. This included at least one civilian (bottom left picture) and at least two military helicopters. Soviet Union rarely showed so much dedication in search of common tourists. Some explain this care as ties to KGB of one or more members from the Dyatlov group. However another explanation might lie in the fact that climb of Mount Otorten was devoted to Communist Congress in Moscow. Obviously it had certain degree of political motivation for the officials to spare no costs in searches.
Judging by the remains near the bodies it was concluded that young men and women managed to start a fire, but failed to sustain it for extended period of time. However no one could explain why bodies showed so many fractures, internal bleeding, burned parts of the body. Another perplexity and mystery were added by a fact that two of the sweaters showed increased radiation levels. A fact that no one could explain fifty years ago and to this day remains a mystery. Several witnesses and family members reported strange discoloration on the bodies of the victims. One of the family members compared their skin color to those of the people of African descent. Additionally the group was missing at least one camera and a diary of Kolevatov. Yury Yudin testifies that he led a detailed description in his own blog in addition to the diary that was a group diary. It went missing either on the mountain or from evidence room. Either way no one remembered seeing it.
Ludmila Dubinina on the left and bodies of Alexander Kolevatov and Nikolay Thibeaux-Brignolle
The den was made by surviving four members of the Dyatlov group 70- 75 meters from the cedar in a ravine that was hidden from cold winds. It was probably an idea of Zolotarev. It was a common way to survive winters at the front and given the circumstances it offered the best chance for survival for those who remained behind waiting in hope that their three friends will make it to the top of the mountain. It further undermines the theory of paradox undressing. The group clearly realized their threats and did everything they could to preserve themselves. Cedar branches were brought here and laid out to minimize contact of human bodies and cold snow underneath. Furthermore Ludmila Dubinina had sweater and pants of Krivonischenko. Both as it turned out had radiation present on them. However the strangeness of the case was not resolved. In fact it became more weird. All, but three members had significant damage to their bones. They were crushed with immense force. Doctors compared the extend of the damage to being hit by a car. A second thing that is striking about the den is that bodies were actually found few feet from their improvised shelter in the deep part of the ravine on the area of only 4 square meters. Some of the clothes that were taken from bodies left underneath the cedar tree were placed on the cedar branches, but apparently they were not used.
Ortyukov is in military uniform and radio man is pictured here on the right in a stripped hat. Removal of the bodies from a ravine.
Dubinina and Thibeaux-Brignolle
Zolotarev and Kolevatov
Medical Autopsy of the bodies
Autopsy of first four bodies (Doroshenko, Krivonischenko, Dyatlov, Kholmogorova) was performed in a village of Vizhai on March 4th, 1959 by Boris Alekseevich Vozrojdenniy (ironically his last name means "reborn" in Russian, interesting choice of profession). He recorded damages and clothing that the victims wore at the time of their discovery. Autopsy of Rustem Slobodin who was found on the 5th of March was performed on 8th of March.
Yury Doroshenko is one of the two tourists that were found under a cedar. He was most sturdy and tallest member of the group at a height of 180 cm. He was wearing a vest and a shirt, short sleeve shirt, knit pants and shorts over pants. On his feet a pair of wool socks. Pants had tears inside of the thighs. Additionally the left foot had burnt socks (marked by 13). No footwear.
- ear, nose and lips are covered by blood (marked by 2)
- right armpit has a bruise 2cm*1.5 cm (3)
- inner surface of the right shoulder has two abrasions 2cm*1.5cm with no bleeding in the tissues, two cuts on the skin (5)
- in the upper third of right forearm brown- red bruises with size 4*1cm, 2.5*1.5cm, 5*5cm (6)
- fingers on both hands have torn skin (9 and 10)
- bruised skin in the upper third of both legs (11)
- signs of frostbite on face and ears
- on the right cheek, foamy gray fluid discharges from the mouth
Amount of urine was 150 grams. Foamy grey fluid that was found on the right cheek of the deceased gave some doctors a reason to think that before death someone or something was pressing on his chest cavity. Discharges were quiet common during forceful interrogation by the NKVD (Stalin's Secret Police) and Special Forces. This could also be a reason of a nasty fall from a tree. Nevertheless this aspect was ignored in the final papers. Cause of death: hypothermia.
George (Yuri) Krivonischenko
His body was the second discovered underneath the cedar. He was dressed in shirts, long sleeved shirt, swimming pants, pants and torn sock on his left leg. He had no footwear.
- bruises on the forehead 0.3*1.8cm and a bruise around left temporal bone (1)
- diffuse bleeding in the right temporal and occipital region due to damage to temporalis muscle (2)
- tip of the nose is missing (3)
- frostbitten ears (4)
- bruises on the right side of the chest 7*2cm and 2*1.2cm (5)
- bruises on hands (6)
- detachment of the epidermis on the back of his left hand at width of 2cm (7)
- portion of the epidermis from the right hand is found in the mouth of the deceased
- bruises on the thighs (8-11) with minor scratches
- bruise on his left buttock 10*3cm (16)
- abrasions on the outer side of the left size 6*2cm and 4*5 cm (17-18)
- bruises on the left leg 2*1, 2*1.5 and 3*1.3 cm (19-21)
- burn on the left leg 10*4 cm (15)
The amount of urine in the bladder was 500 grams. Cause of death: hypothermia. He froze to death. The presence of skin between his teeth that was torn from his hands might suggest that Krivonischenko tried to stay on the cedar as long as he could. Some theories speculate it was a result of his dedication to cut as many tree branches as he could. Others claim something on the ground kept him on a tree.
The first two bodies of (Doroshenko and Krivonischenko) that were found from the Dyatlov Incident showed an expected pattern of death. They froze to death. Their clothes were removed by their friends. It might sound bad, but this is the reality of Siberia. If you can't keep yourself warm, you will die quickly. One of the most common myths that surround these deaths is a theory of so- called "paradoxical undressing". This theory ignores the fact that the bodies were undressed after they died and it was done by other members with a help of a knife in some cases. Different articles of clothing were simply cut from the dead bodies or taken off and used by other members of a group. These tourists clearly showed logical will to live. There was no state of panic and there was no illogical actions. Bodies were carefully and respectfully laid side by side and their possessions were divide among the survivors.
Zinaida was better dressed than bodies underneath the cedar. She had two hats, long sleeved shirt, sweater, another shirt and a sweater with torn cuffs. It was unclear whether she cut them off or they were torn by another person. She also had trousers, cotton athletic pants, ski pants with three small holes on the bottom. She also had three pairs of socks. No footwear and a military mask.
- swelling of meninges (important feature of hypothermia)
- frostbites on the phalanges of fingers (2)
- numerous bruises on hands and palms (2 and 3)
- a long bruise that encircled her on the right side, 29* 6cm (1 and 4)
Amount of urine in bladder is 300 g. Her cause of death was proclaimed as a hypothermia due to violent accident. Further studies proved that she was not sexually active at the time of her death.
The head of the deceased was bare. He had unbuttoned fur coat with pockets, a sweater, long sleeved shirt, ski pants over his pants. Footwear was absent. He had only one pair of socks, woolen on the right, cotton on the left. It is hard to explain this uneven distribution. It could be that he had two socks on one foot and later took it off to protect the other bare foot. It might have been someone else's sock who simply gave it away to protect a friend from a certain death. He had a pocket knife and a photo of Zina Kolmogorova. The clock on the hand showed 5:31
- minor abrasions on the forehead (1)
- abrasions above the left eyebrow of brown- red color (2)
- brown- red abrasions on both cheeks (3)
- dried blood on lips
- lower jaw had a missing incisor, the mucosa was intact that suggest the tooth was lost long before the final trip
- on the lower third of the right forearm and the palm surface many small scratches of dark red coloration (4)
- metacarpophalangeal joints on the right hand had brown red bruises. This is common injury in hand to hand fights. To get a better idea of the injuries just make a fist. This is the part of the hand which you use to hit someone.
- brownish- purple bruises on the left hand, also superficial wounds on the 2nd and 5th finger (5)
- bruised knees without bleeding into the underlying tissues (6)
- on the lower third of the right leg bruising (7)
- both ankles had abrasions, bright red, size 1*0.5 cm and 3.0*2.5 cm. Hemorrhage into the underlying tissue (8)
There were no internal injuries. Amount of urine in the bladder about one liter. The cause of death was hypothermia. Later Yury Yudin will testify that the long sleeved shirt found on the body of Igor Dyatlov was his. But he gave it to Doroshenko then he was departing. It would be logical to assume that Dyatlov got it from a frozen body of the Doroshenko after he had died.
Rustem wore a long sleeve shirt, another shirt, sweater, two pairs of pants, four pairs of socks. Unlike previous bodies he wore one boot on his right leg. His watches stopped at 8:45am. His pockets had 310 rubles and a passport. Additionally searchers discovered a knife, pen, pencil, comb and a match box with a single sock.
- minor brownish red abrasions on the forehead, two scratches are 1.5 cm long at the distance of 0.3 cm between them (1)
- brownish red bruise on the upper eyelid of the right eye with hemorrhage into the underlying tissues (2)
- traces of blood discharge from the nose (3)
- swollen lips
- swelling and a lot of small abrasions of irregular shape on the right half of the face (4)
- abrasions on the left side of the face (5)
- epidermis is torn from the right forearm (6)
- bruises in the metacarpophalangeal joints on both hands. Similar bruises are common in hand to hand combat (7)
- brown cherry bruises on the medial aspect of the left arm and left palm (8)
- bruises on the left tibia in dimensions at 2.5* 1.5 cm (9)
Fracture of the frontal bone and hemorrhages (shaded areas) in the temporalis muscle that were found on the skull of Rustem Slobodin. Boris Alekseevich Vozrojdenniy suggested that this could be done with some foreign blunt object. Medical autopsy further states that Slobodin probably suffered loss of coordination due to initial shock right after the blow that could speed up his death from hypothermia. However the conclusion is predictably careful. Death of Rustem Slobodin is judged as a result from hypothermia. All bruises and scratches were blamed on last minute agony. Although it is still somewhat unclear how did he manage to harm his exterior hands and legs. When the person falls even in an irrational state it is usually the palms that suffer the most as well as medial aspects of the legs. Injury to the head are less common, especially bilateral ones. It is also usual to harm the face and sides of the skull while the back of the head has no damage. In case of Slobodin body we see the opposite. His injury pattern is a reverse of what we would usually see in injuries suffered by a freezing man in the last minutes of his or her life. It looks as if Rustem fell repeatedly on his face as he was walking down the mountain. And every time he fell he managed to hit the sides of the his head. It is unusual to see in a man who was probably in a better physical shape than anyone in the group. Even a long ski trip could hardly be responsible for this alleged "clumsiness".
The remaining four bodies were inspected on May 9th, 1959. Their bodies were found several months after their deaths by a Mansi native Kurikov with his dog.
Ludmila wore a short sleeve shirt, long sleeve shirt, and two sweaters. The body was covered by underwear, long socks, two pairs of pants. External pair was badly damaged by fire and subsequently ripped. She also wore a small hat and two pairs of warm sock. A third sock was not paired. Ludmila apparently in the last attempt to preserve her feet took off her sweater and cut it in two pieces. One half she rapped around her left foot. Another half she left or dropped unintentionally on the snow.
- tongue is missing
- soft tissues are missing around eyes, eyebrows, and left temporal area, bone is partially exposed (1)
- eyes are missing (1)
- nose cartilages are broken and flattened (2)
- 2, 3, 4, 5 ribs are broken on the right side, two fracture lines are visible (3)
- 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 ribs are broken on the right side, two fracture lines are visible (4)
- soft tissues of the upper lip are missing, teeth and and upper jaw is exposed
- massive hemorrhage in the heart's right atrium
- bruise in the middle left thigh, size 10*5cm (6)
- damaged tissues around left temporal bone, size 4*4cm (7)
Occasionally you hear claims that the tongue was ripped, or eaten, or whatnot. The medical records simply that "the tongue is missing". Vozrojdenniy describes missing hypoglossal muscle as well as muscles of the floor of the mouth. That is it. There is no explanation, theories, condition of the surrounding tissues. It looks weird especially given the fact previous bodies had more detailed autopsies. There is no credible explanation for this vague statement. Although it is mentioned that the stomach contained about 100 g of coagulated blood. It is used by some as an indication that the heart was beating and the blood was flowing when tongue was removed from a mouth. The cause of death is stated as hemorrhage into right atrium of the heart, multiple fractured ribs and internal bleeding.
- eye balls are missing (1)
- missing soft tissues around left eye brow, size 7*6cm, bone is exposed (2)
- flair chest, broken 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 ribs on the right side, two fracture lines (3)
- open wound on the right side with exposed bone, 8*6cm in size (4)
Both Zolotarev and Dubinina have an interesting pattern of injuries. They are very similar in direction and force despite difference in shape, height and body composition of the two. This would suggest that whatever caused these injuries was not a single uniform event.
- lack of soft tissues around eyes, eyebrows are missing, skull bones are exposed
- broken nose (2)
- open wound behind ear, size 3*1.5cm (6)
- deformed neck (4)
- multiple fractures to the temporal bone, with extensions to the frontal and sphenoid bones (1), the close up of the fractures to the skull is shown below
- bruise on the upper lip on the left side (2)
- hemorrhage on the lower forearm, size 10*12cm (3)
Vozrojdenniy, who undertook the autopsy, excluded accidental fall on the rock as a possible cause for such a massive and unusual fracture. Some theorized that the shape might be due to pressure applied during alleged avalanche that hit unsuspected tourists while they slept in the tent. If Nikolay slept on a camera this sudden increase in pressure could leave a mark on his head, however the shape of the lens is round and the damage would have a more round shape. Another reason why some specialists refused this theory is a massive hemorrhage that would make Thibeaux- Brignolle unable to move on his own and leave the site of the tent. There was no signs of dragging on the snow and foot prints suggest that everyone in the group moved on their own two feet.
Tent is ripped from the inside. Initially the fact was overlooked, but a woman who worked for the police department laundry services clearly identified that the damage came from the inside. Further expertise proved her hypothesis to be correct.
Nine tourist leave the tent with little clothes while outside temperature dipped to -30°C (-22°F). Most of them lacked proper footwear. Warm clothes, boots are left inside the abandoned tent. Survivors go to extreme lengths to preserve themselves in their harsh conditions. They even cut the clothes of their dead friends to protect themselves. They even dig a den that does not save them. Thus the theory of "paradox undressing" has no support in the available facts.
One of the poles show signs of damage made by the knife.
Presence of radiation on the cloths that were worn by one of the members of the group (George (Yuri) Krivonischenko).
Kolevatov kept a personal diary. Yuriy Yudin, the only survivor of the group, testified that it was with him on the last trip. The diary went missing.
Judging by the pictures of the group at least one of the cameras went missing.
Strange unidentified cloth "obmotki", an old school version of socks, was found near the bodies.
Missing tongue. Cause is unknown. What makes the fact more mysterious is lack of coherent explanation or description of the damage. Autopsy doesn't mention the state or nature of the surrounding tissues.
The bodies of the dead tourists show signs of unexplained damages including broken ribs, scrapes and etc.
Semen Zolotarev introduces himself as "Alexander" to the group. In fact common memorial to the group lists his name incorrectly.
Semen Zolotarev and George (Yuri) Krivonischenko are buried separately from the rest of the group on a cemetery that is officially closed for several years.
Money, food, valuables likes watches, alcohol and blankets remain in place.
Secret launches/ UFO
Around the same time Soviet armed forces did launch several rockets from Baykanur base. Although military claimed the rockets landed in the north Ural mountains, several geologists 70 km from the mountains saw some glowing and pulsating orbits flying in the direction of the Kholat Syakhl on a day of tragedy (evening of Febrauary 1st). As part of technological theory there have been suggestions that an infrasound might have been responsible for sudden unpleasant feelings among the tourists.
These are only few of the theories. Many are more bizarre, strange and quiet frankly dumb ideas that circulate out there. Some blame the spirits others blame the paradoxical undressing that lead to hypothermia. All these theories ignore the fact that only two bodies showed signs of undressing after they left the tent. And it was the first two bodies found under the cedar. Their clothes were removed after they died. We can assume the bodies were beginning to show first signs of rigor mortis or stiffness after death. The clothes of dead victims were cut off and later found near the bodies in the den. This proves that people were aware of the danger of hypothermia and tried everything they could to save themselves. Why did they leave the tent with all the clothes and boots inside is still a mystery. Many theories surfaced in the past decades. Few of these, however, explain a wide range of physical injuries that the group experienced.
Unfortunately these were not the last victims of the Kholat Syakhl. From 1960-61 several airplane crashes took away lives of nine pilots and geologists who were sent here. For a time flights were totally canceled in the region. Among more recent victims of the mountain was a crash of Mi-8 in 2009. Pilots ignored long standing unofficial no- fly zone. Fortunately they survived the cash, but they couldn't explain why their helicopter went down so quickly and without any warning. Tourists today repeat the track of the Dyatlov group, but none of groups ever contain 9 people. In the early 2000's a group of 9 tourists under supervision of rescue crew repeated the same descent down the slope of Kholat Syakhl. Despite snow cover and night time none of the participants got any significant bruises or cuts. Those who observed the students did not report any difficulty in locating members on the mountain side. None of the group members were lost and vocal/ eye contact was constant between group members at all times. This only adds to the mystery of what really happened on Kholat Syakhl that day. The case of Dyatlov Pass deaths remains open.