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Start by marking “Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident” as Want to Read: In February , a group of nine experienced hikers in the Russian Ural Mountains died mysteriously on an elevation known as Dead Mountain. The true story of the Dyatlov Pass. Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident (Historical Nonfiction Bestseller, True Story Book of Survival). Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. The mystery of the bizarre deaths of elite Russian . Dead Mountain is a well-researched, and respectful book about the Dyatlov Pass incident that took the lives of nine young Russian university.

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New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller! — What happened that night on Dead Mountain? In February , a group of nine experienced hikers in. In Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident, Pass Incident, by Donnie Eichar, is published by Chronicle Books. The Dyatlov Pass incident (Russian: Гибель тургруппы Дятлова) refers to the deaths of nine skiers/hikers in the northern Ural Mountains, in the former .. Another hypothesis popularised by Donnie Eichar's book Dead Mountain is that.

Some of the clothing was radioactive. Relatives later described the bodies as having orange skin and grey hair.

The authorities closed the investigation as unsolved and made efforts to ensure that the incident did not get wide publicity. By this time there were eye-witness reports circulating of bright, unexplained lights seen in the night sky. The mystery of Dyatlov Pass as the mountain pass came to be named, in honour of the group has lasted decades, lately gaining worldwide attention online.

The suppression of files by authorities has been interpreted as evidence of a cover-up. That is hardly a persuasive line, as the USSR was a secretive police state where the concealment of problematic and even mundane information was standard procedure. It seems that all of the Dyatlov files have been released through official and unofficial channels since the late s. American documentary filmmaker Donnie Eichar investigated the mystery, travelling to the site in search of new evidence, as well as examining investigation reports and interviewing people, including Yudin.

In Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident , Eichar gives us a glimpse of the Khrushchev thaw, when paranoia and the fear of arbitrary arrest of the Stalin era lessened and an atmosphere of hope and the promise of broadened horizons inspired youngsters such as the Dyatlov group.

Eichar presents the last days of the group through diaries and photographs. The last journey was a happy one, it seems: We get a feeling for the characters involved: It makes their gruesome and puzzling deaths all the more troubling.

Attack by Mansi tribesmen or others: The Mansi were peaceful and hospitable, had no history of attacking visitors and had no reason to threaten the group.

Plus there was no track evidence of anyone approaching the tent. Animal attack: There were no tracks. Why would the group abandon the relative security of the tent to run away?

High winds: Was a member outside and blown into the darkness by strong wind, which led the others to attempt to rescue that person? It is improbable such a large and experienced group would have behaved like that. Strong winds would have been enough to blow away the tent, too.

It is atypical terrain for avalanches and an avalanche would have untethered the tent. Secret weapons testing: None in the area, apparently. Radioactive dispersal would have affected all of the party members and their equipment, not just a few items of clothing.

Eichar fails to mention that lamp wicks at the time were commonly made of ceramic gauze treated with radioactive thorium. They were very fragile and liable to crumble to dust if damaged. Discoloured skin and hair of the ravine group could be attributable to partial mummification over a period of three months exposed to the elements.

The idea that a romantic intrigue led to a violent dispute is very implausible. By all indications, the group was largely harmonious and sexual tension was confined to platonic flirtation and crushes. There were no drugs present and the only alcohol was a small flask of medicinal alcohol, found intact at the scene. The group had even sworn off cigarettes for the expedition. While conspiracy theorists might have a worldview shaped by Hollywood teen-slasher movies, the Dyatlov group acted as a conscientious team in a hostile environment.

The group was experienced enough to realise that they were in dangerous conditions and that anything that threatened group cohesion would endanger all of them. What Eichar deduces is that it is the decision to cut the tent and flee that is the crux of the mystery; everything before and after that event is explicable and logical.

It was that act of apparent near madness to abandon their only shelter that was critical. Eichar supports the theory recently proposed by Yuri Kuntsevich, head of the Dyatlov Foundation, a Russian organisation dedicated to the memory of the party and to resolving the mystery. Scientists have identified a naturally occurring phenomenon called infrasound. Just as wind moving over sand dunes can produce perceptible humming, wind colliding with topographic features can produce low-frequency waves ranging from audible to sub-audible.

Dyatlov Pass incident

Tests of infrasound on subjects have induced powerful feelings of nausea, panic, dread, chills, nervousness, raised heartbeat rate and breathing difficulties. Scientists believe the ridge below which the tent was located might have generated vortices producing audible and sub-audible infrasound on a windy night such as that of February Eichar sets out in a final chapter what sudden panic and a confrontation with an unknown weather phenomenon might have led to, tying together a compelling narrative that explains almost all of the facts.

It is hard to read the last chapter without feeling both satisfaction at watching a criminal case being resolved and deep sympathy for the hikers in their terrible final hours. There are a few loose ends: Could it be that wind rumble was mistaken by Dyatlov for an approaching avalanche and that he ordered them out? Alexander Adams is a writer and art critic. He writes for Apollo , the Art Newspaper and the Jackdaw.

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Coming soon Essays, profiles and in-depth features, every Sunday. Dyatlov Pass: Topics Books.

The party entered the wilderness and never returned. Eichar applies logic and evidence when evaluating and then disposing of competing theories. Picture by: Wikimedia Commons. Alexander Adams Books.

Tim Black Books. Boris Vozrozhdenny, the force required to cause such damage would have been extremely high, comparable to the force of a car crash. Notably, the bodies had no external wounds associated with the bone fractures, as if they had been subjected to a high level of pressure.

However, major external injuries were found on Dubinina, who was missing her tongue, eyes, part of the lips, as well as facial tissue and a fragment of skullbone; [16] she also had extensive skin maceration on the hands.

It was claimed that Dubinina was found lying face down in a small stream [17] that ran under the snow and that her external injuries were in line with putrefaction in a wet environment, and were unlikely to be associated with her death. There was initial speculation that the indigenous Mansi people had attacked and murdered the group for encroaching upon their lands, but investigation indicated that the nature of their deaths did not support this hypothesis; only the hikers' footprints were visible, and they showed no sign of hand-to-hand struggle.

Some of them had only one shoe, while others had no shoes or wore only socks. Journalists reporting on the available parts of the inquest files claim that it states: Six of the group members died of hypothermia and three of fatal injuries. There were no indications of other people nearby on Kholat Syakhl apart from the nine travellers.

The tent had been ripped open from within. The victims had died 6 to 8 hours after their last meal. Traces from the camp showed that all group members left the campsite of their own accord, on foot. High levels of radiation were found on only one of the victims clothing. To dispel the theory of an attack by the indigenous Mansi people, Dr Vozrozhdenny stated that the fatal injuries of the three bodies could not have been caused by another human being, "because the force of the blows had been too strong and no soft tissue had been damaged".

There were no survivors of the incident. At the time the verdict was that the group members had all died because of a compelling natural force.

The files were sent to a secret archive. Contradictory results were obtained: one of the experts stated that the character of the injuries resembled a person knocked down by a car, and the DNA analysis did not reveal any similarity to the DNA of living relatives. In addition, it turned out that the name of Semyon Zolotarev is not on the list of buried at the Ivanovskoye cemetery.

Nevertheless, the reconstruction of the face from the exhumed skull agrees with the post-war photographs of Semyon, although journalists express suspicions that another person was hiding under the name of Semyon Zolotarev after the war. The possibility of a crime has been completely discounted.

He recalled that their skin had a "deep brown tan". However, these sightings were not noted in the initial investigation in , and these various independent witnesses only came forward years later. Yarovoi had been involved in the search for Dyatlov's group and at the inquest as an official photographer during both the search and the initial stage of the investigation, and so had insight into the events. The book was written during the Soviet era when details of the accident were kept secret and Yarovoi avoided revealing anything beyond the official position and well-known facts.

The book romanticised the accident and had a much more optimistic end than the real events — only the group leader was found deceased. Yarovoi's colleagues say that he had alternative versions of the novel, but both were declined because of censorship. Since Yarovoi's death in , all his archives, including photos, diaries and manuscripts, have been lost.

Indeed, many of those who had remained silent for thirty years reported new facts about the accident. In , he published an article which included his admission that the investigation team had no rational explanation for the incident. He also stated that, after his team reported that they had seen flying spheres, he then received direct orders from high-ranking regional officials to dismiss this claim.

The narrative line of the book details the everyday life and thoughts of a modern woman an alter ego of the author herself who attempts to resolve the case. Despite its fictional narrative, Matveyeva's book remains the largest source of documentary materials ever made available to the public regarding the incident. In addition, the pages of the case files and other documentaries in photocopies and transcripts are gradually being published on a web forum for enthusiastic researchers.

The foundation's stated aim is to continue investigation of the case and to maintain the Dyatlov Museum to preserve the memory of the dead hikers. Reviewing the sensationalist "Yeti" hypothesis see below , American skeptic author Benjamin Radford suggests as more plausible: "that the group woke up in a panic They were poorly clothed because they had been sleeping, and ran to the safety of the nearby woods where trees would help slow oncoming snow.

In the darkness of night they got separated into two or three groups; one group made a fire hence the burned hands while the others tried to return to the tent to recover their clothing, since the danger had apparently passed. But it was too cold, and they all froze to death before they could locate their tent in the darkness.

At some point some of the clothes may have been recovered or swapped from the dead, but at any rate the group of four whose bodies were most severely damaged were caught in an avalanche and buried under 4 metres 13 ft of snow more than enough to account for the 'compelling natural force' the medical examiner described.

Dubinina's tongue was likely removed by scavengers and ordinary predation. An avalanche would have left certain patterns and debris distributed over a wide area.

The bodies found within ten days of the event were covered with a very shallow layer of snow and, had there been an avalanche of sufficient strength to sweep away the second party, these bodies would have been swept away as well; this would have caused more serious and different injuries in the process and would have damaged the tree line.

Over expeditions to the region were held since the incident, and none of them ever reported conditions that might create an avalanche. A study of the area using up-to-date terrain-related physics revealed that the location was entirely unlikely for such an avalanche to have occurred.

The "dangerous conditions" found in another nearby area which had significantly steeper slopes and cornices were observed in April and May when the snowfalls of winter were melting. During February, when the incident occurred, there were no such conditions.

An analysis of the terrain, the slope and the incline indicates that even if there could have been a very specific avalanche that circumvents the other criticisms, its trajectory would have bypassed the tent. It had collapsed laterally but not horizontally. Dyatlov was an experienced skier and the much older Alexander Zolotaryov was studying for his Masters Certificate in ski instruction and mountain hiking. Neither of these two men would have been likely to camp anywhere in the path of a potential avalanche.

Footprint patterns leading away from the tent were inconsistent with someone, let alone a group of 9 people, running in panic from either real or imagined danger. In fact, all the footprints leading away from the tent and towards the woods were consistent with individuals who were walking at a normal pace. Repeated investigation[ edit ] A review of the investigation evidence completed in by experienced investigators from the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation ICRF on request of the families confirmed the avalanche with a number of important details added.

The harsh weather at the same time played critical role in the events of the tragic night, which has been reconstructed as follows: On 1 February the group arrives at the Kholat Syakhl mountain and erects a large, 9-person tent on an open slope, without any natural barriers, such as forests.

On the day and a few preceding days a heavy snowfall continued, with strong wind and frost. The group, traversing through the slope and digging in the tent into the snow weakens the snow base.

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During the night the snow field above the tent starts to slide down, pushing on the tent fabric. The group wakes up and starts evacuation in panic. Some of the attendees were able to put on warm clothes, while some didn't. All escape through a hole in the tent fabric. The whole group goes down the slope and finds a place perceived as safe from the avalanche only m down, at the forest border. Four of the group, only in their underwear and pyjamas, camp at a small fireplace they started at the forest border.

Their bodies were found first and confirmed to die from hypothermia. Three alpinists, including Dyatlov, attempted to climb back to the tent, possibly to get sleeping bags. They had better clothes than those at the fireplace, but still quite light and their footwear was incomplete.

Their bodies were found at various places ranging m from the fireplace, in poses suggesting they fell down of exhaustion while trying to climb in deep snow in extremely cold weather. Remaining four, equipped with warm clothes and footwear, were apparently trying to find or build a better camping place in the forest further down the slope.

Their bodies were found only 70 m from the fireplace, under several meters thick layer of snow and with traumas indicating they fell into a snow hole formed above a stream.The duration of the trip must be a minimum of 16 days, with eight of those days spent in non-inhabitable regions, eight of which in a tent. Autopsy revealed that three of them had sustained life-threatening, blunt-force trauma injuries.

What happened here? It had collapsed laterally but not horizontally. Dead Mountain: There was also their camera, found intact, with a number of pictures of happy young people unaware of their own looming deaths, of the sand running silently through the glass of their lives.

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