True Crime Fans – Russia Is Reopening The Dyatlov Pass Case

Will we finally find answers for the disturbing deaths of nine hikers?

For all you unsolved mystery fans, here’s some exciting news. One of the greatest (and freakiest) mysteries in the world is the Dyatlov Pass incident, now being reopened for investigation. The Dyatlov Pass murders were the subject of heaps of conspiracies, many of which came to public attention after being covered in a video by Buzzfeed Unsolved.

For anyone who hasn’t heard of the Dyatlov Pass incident, it’s a very famous cold case about the mysterious and disturbing deaths of nine student hikers. A Russian prosecutor recently stated they would be reopening the case to give rest to all the theories. They also want to finally get some answers for the relatives of the hikers. Russian investigators are claiming that the deaths were a result from “the spontaneous power of nature”.

If you Google it, there are heaps of different theories as to how such disturbing deaths came to be, from conspiracies on Russian nuclear activity to aliens. Yeah, there’s always an alien theory.

*warning: some gory details ahead*

The Dyatlov Pass Incident’s Facts

  • On 2 February 1959, nine hikers made their way through the Dyatlov Pass on Ortorten Mountain, Russia.
  • Their leader was Igor Dyatlov, who discovered the Pass earlier.
  • A rescue team found their campsite on 26 February. Most of the campers’ belongings had been left there and the tent was torn up.
  • Three of the bodies were found not too far away – one with a fractured skull. The cause of death was determined by doctors as hypothermia.
  • Two of the bodies were found a bit further out, on the tree line less than 2km away from the camp, wearing nothing but underwear (despite the temperature being well below freezing).
  • The remaining four weren’t found until two months later, where one had a fractured skull, one had crushed ribs, and one’s eyes and tongue were missing (WTF). They were wearing the clothes of the first pair who were found in their underwear.
The rescue team finds the hikers’ tent, torn from the inside.

Why This Case Is So Freaky

If those deets weren’t enough to freak you out, it gets weirder. The tent that the hikers camped in was torn up from the inside, making it unlikely that someone forced their way in. It’s like the hikers tried to claw their way out. Plus they were in such a rush that they had left behind their shoes and most of them were out in just their socks.

The clothes and surrounding area also tested high in radioactivity. Then there’s the question of the clothes removed from the naked hikers found near the treeline. And, you know, the missing tongue. I shudder every time I remember that detail – it’s definitely the most disturbing part of this case.

On top of all that, there was no outward trauma to the bodies and investigators reckon the force need to inflict their injuries was too strong to be caused by a human. Which brings us to theories – here’s a couple that I think make sense.

#1 An Avalanche

I reckon this one makes the most sense. The hikers could have been buried under snow and tried to cut their way out. This theory explains the naked hikers – they may have been suffering hypothermia.

Nerve damage caused by hypothermia can make you feel really hot when you’re actually very cold; it’s possible the hikers removed their clothing for that reason. Alternatively, the group of four took the clothes off the naked two after they died and layered themselves up. The theory also explains the trauma being inhuman in origin. So, why don’t we just end it here, right?

Well, it still doesn’t explain the radioactivity or the *shudder* missing tongue.

#2 An Explosion

This one makes decent sense, too. A Soviet missile could have set off a seismic event similar to an avalanche and then everything mentioned above would make sense. Plus, that would account for radioactivity at the site.

However, there isn’t any real evidence of an explosion and no missile launch in the records that matches up. And again, the tongue, guys. That goddamn tongue. Somebody please explain why her tongue was missing.

There’s a few other theories that are varying levels of bonkers – military conspiracies, yetis, aliens, etc. And yes, aliens are (naturally) the most popular theory. Sigh. Just grab some snacks, have a look on Google or YouTube, and get ready to fall down the rabbit hole of theories that try to explain this very strange incident.

Let’s hope the reopening of the investigation leads to some answers – not just for us, but for the justice of the hikers.

The tomb for the deceased hikers.

Image Sources: Wikimedia Commons, GIPHY

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