17 October 2018

Deadhead Mountain

Donnie Eichar in his book Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident, tries to censor everyone who reveals the bullshit "secret" "true" reason behind why 9 experienced skiers died in the Ural mountains mysteriously. He is not interested in the truth, he wants you to buy his shitty book. Well, here's the "secret" and here's why it's a total load.

The shape of the Kholat Syakhl mountain produces a Kármán vortex street when the wind hits it just right. These vortices of air generates infrasonic noise that 22% of the population are highly susceptible to (and, coincidentally, ALL 9 skiers were in that 22%). The noise causes them to go crazy and stuff ("hijacking their bodies" and "wreaking havoc on their minds") after they listen to it for a few hours. They run out of their tents naked in a panic. There was no moon that night, and the temperature was 40 below freezing. The combination of extremely low temperature and injury from bumping into things in the dark killed them.

Of course, it doesn't explain how ALL 9 of the skiers were in that magic minority that is susceptible to infrasonic waves like this. It doesn't explain why one skier was missing a tongue and another was missing eyes. It doesn't explain why they had internal crushing injuries and broken bones but no bruises or any external injuries. It doesn't explain why a few bodies had dark orange skin and were highly radioactive. It doesn't explain why no one before or since, of the thousands of people who have been there, have ever experienced this phenomenon, including the natives who live in the area, and multiple teams of researchers who investigated the deaths.

It doesn't take into account the lights they saw in the sky (which were later identified as Russian missile launches, as the mountain is near a top secret military base) and any possible motive the military would have for killing them to keep their missile tests a secret.

No reason is given why the author did not go to the mountain and set up any equipment to listen for these infrasonic waves. He's throwing away all other hypotheses as obviously wrong and setting up his own as obviously right without actually conducting a test to see if these waves are actually produced by the mountain or not? He didn't actually conduct the test? He based it on similarly shaped mountains that produce kind of similar infrasonic effects that have never ever killed anyone so far.

I shit you not.

There, I just saved you the $20 for the book and ruined the author's fun by exposing the secret ending.

Now, here's what we do know:

•FACT: This was during the coldest time in the Cold War when both the US and USSR were testing a great deal of new weapons.

•FACT: There is a Soviet military base within the vicinity of the mountains where the hikers were staying.

•FACT: There were reports of lights in the sky were confirmed to have been Soviet rocket tests.

•FACT: The Soviet Union has a long history of testing air-burst weapons such as the Father of All Bombs.

•FACT: The internal crushing injuries the skiers received are consistent with the powerful shock waves produced by these types of explosives.

•FACT: The Soviet government had every reason in the world to cover up the deaths as they had with other accidental casualties of military experiments, such as the anthrax leak at Sverdlovsk in 1979.

Can this hypothesis I've cobbled together over the past ten minutes explain everything about the Dyatlov Pass incident? No. Does it do a better job at explaining at least some of the details than the total bullshit explanation a Hollywood screenwriter came up with and repackaged as non-fiction because he wanted to get a movie deal and drum up positive press for his potential future pay day? Absolutely.

By the way, I've used first-person pronouns with less frequency in this review than the author did in the original book.