For millions of years, the mountains have loomed above us, holding their chilling secrets in the clouds just out of our reach. However, as time goes on, humans make more progress toward unlocking answers to the world’s greatest puzzles. Even so, some of the most unsettling mysteries are lying on the colossal faces of the Earth’s mountains.
10. The Dyatlov Pass Incident
In 1959, on Siberia’s notorious Dyatlov Pass (aka “Death Mountain”), nine young Russian students on a skiing trip disappeared and were later found dead under extremely mysterious circumstances. The group had been missing for weeks, and a rescue team was sent to find them.
However, what they found was not at all what they expected. The group’s tents had been slashed open, with all the equipment still inside in almost pristine condition. Numerous sets of footprints led out into the snow.
The first bodies, which were completely frozen, were found almost 1.6 kilometers (1 mi) away, next to the remnants of a burned-out fire. Another 320 meters (1,050 ft) from the bodies lay the corpse of Igor Dyatlov, the student who had put the expedition together.
The body of Zina Kolmogorova, who lay under 10 centimeters (4 in) of snow, was found next. She was 183 meters (600 ft) from Igor’s body, making it appear as if they had been trying to crawl back to the tents.
Over two months later, the final bodies were discovered under 5 meters (15 ft) of snow in a hollow they had apparently dug out of desperation. They had dreadful injuries, such as broken bones and brain damage, but no external wounds at all.
Even stranger, the clothes contained higher levels of radiation than normal. The perplexing thing was how some bodies were fully clothed, yet some were nearly naked. Most confusing of all was the body of Lyudmila Dubinina, which was missing the tongue and eyes.
Although we still don’t know what happened to the students, some speculate that they had stumbled across a Soviet testing facility and had been killed to keep the location a secret. Others believe that the students were killed by aliens because bright lights were spotted in the sky around the time of the disappearance.
Perhaps the most disturbing theory is that the students had been attacked by an undocumented beast and left in the snow to die. There is no official conclusion to the case, and most likely, there never will be.