The Dyatlov Pass Incident

Synopsis:
Year:
2013
7 Views

Okay, I'm rolling.

My name is Holly King.

I'm a psychology student

at the University of Oregon.

In 2008, I saw a news report

about 30 elite scientists

that had gotten together

in a remote area of the

Ural Mountains in Russia.

They were trying to solve a mystery

that had baffled the world

for almost 50 years.

It had become known

as the Dyatlov Pass Incident

after a leader of an expedition

there in 1959 named Igor Dyatlov.

They failed,

but I was riveted by the story.

So when my favorite professor,

Dr. Kittles, assigned the class

a project on that very same incident,

I couldn't believe it.

I mentioned it to a buddy of mine,

Jensen, a film student here,

and he said that we should make a film.

So we applied for a grant, and...

we got it.

- Okay?

- Mm-hmm.

So tell us what happened.

Uh, I first heard about the incident

when a Russian journalist

named Yuri Yarovoi published a

fictionalized account of it in a book.

Of course, they had him killed.

I mean, it didn't matter

that he fictionalized it.

They didn't want anybody

talking about Dyatlov.

And I began using the facts of the incident

as a teaching exercise in psychology

because there's so much that

we know about what happened

at Dyatlov's Pass, so many details,

and yet the whole thing

remains shrouded in mystery.

What are some of the explanations

that you tend to get?

The most common, cold,

scientific explanation I get

is a condition called

hypothermic dementia.

Hypothermic dementia.

Yup, that is literally

what everybody says.

But, um, my favorite is, um,

"paradoxical undressing."

That does actually happen, though,

to people suffering with severe hypothermia.

They get disoriented,

think that they're overheating,

and then start taking off their clothes.

Come on!

Holly, these were nine

experienced backpackers.

Yeah?

You're telling me that

they all got severe hypothermia

at the same time, on the same night?

Maybe.

They'd been out there

for three days already.

Why, then?

An avalanche is another frequent answer.

That is even stupider

than paradoxical undressing.

Why?

If they could hear an avalanche, then

why did they stay away from the camp

for three hours with no shoes?

But in truth, there are innumerable

answers to the question.

Most of my students will

project their own fears onto it.

The Russian military.

I really expect my students to do more than

to come up with a believable explanation.

I want them to put themselves

in the place of those people

so that they can try to understand

why the victims did what they did.

That is the answer I'm looking for.

We're gonna find out the truth.

Even though they'll never find it.

What do you mean?

There is no truth.

The first leg of our journey will take us

from Eugene, Oregon, to Chelyabinsk, Russia.

You're not gonna use that stupid dotted red

line thing to show us traveling, right?

Wrong.

Our ultimate destination is the Kholat Syakhl,

literally translated

"the Mountain of the Dead,"

seriously.

A name the Mansi tribe gave it

due to many accounts

of mysterious deaths and disappearances

throughout history.

So we found ourselves

an audio engineer, Denise Evers.

She was the only

audio person on campus

that could handle the, uh,

physical requirements.

A lot of skinny dudes in audio.

Hey, what's wrong with skinny dudes?

Oh. Uh, sorry, my bad.

And then we found two capable guides.

I'm Andy Thatcher,

president of the

Northwest Trail Association.

I've climbed just about every mountain

worth climbing in the U.S.

I've also hiked the A.T.

- Sorry, the what?

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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"The Dyatlov Pass Incident" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 18 Nov. 2019. <https://www.scripts.com/script/the_dyatlov_pass_incident_20128>.

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