November 27, 2021, 07:22:41 AM
Dyatlov Pass Forum

Author Topic: Another recreation idea  (Read 2021 times)

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April 08, 2021, 02:25:43 PM
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Manti


There are several things about the Dyatlov Group's day to day activities I was wondering about.. One of them concerns the items of food found in the tent.

Given that the stove was found unassembled in its case, we can assume they didn't (yet) use it in the tent on the slope.

Here is a simple recreation anyone can do:
  • Procure some ready-to-eat meat product, for example ham. This will be your loin.
  • Also a bakery product, ex. a slice of bread. Perhaps also something dry such as a zwieback. This will be the rusk.
  • Place these items in the freezer. (Not fridge)
  • After a few hours, retrieve them, and
  • DON'T try this at home: Well... take extra care and maybe have a cup of warm tea nearby and... just try to consume these.

Typical freezers will maintain -18C which is close to the temperatures around the Dyatlov Pass at the time. Backpacks don't provide any significant insulation so it would have been the same temperature inside their backpacks but if you want you can also place these items in a backpack and place that in the freezer.

Where am I getting with this?
It seems to me that without a source of heat to defrost these items, they were not edible and I am puzzled by the find of these items in the tent as if the group were interrupted mid-dinner, the dinner being essentially blocks of ice that your tongue and / or lips will freeze to if you try to bite into them.

 

April 08, 2021, 04:39:20 PM
Reply #1
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Investigator


Right, if we knew what food was found, where it was found, whether it was partially eaten (or most of it still in the original packaging), etc., that could help a lot (or not), for example, we might get a good sense as to whether the "event" occurred while they were in the middle of their meal.  However, I think they would have known that it would get cold and be inedible from the previous couple days, and so would have figured out a way of dealing with it, such as to put some of it in their inner pockets (the food items they intended to eat that night, at least).
 

April 08, 2021, 06:03:57 PM
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KFinn


Right, if we knew what food was found, where it was found, whether it was partially eaten (or most of it still in the original packaging), etc., that could help a lot (or not), for example, we might get a good sense as to whether the "event" occurred while they were in the middle of their meal.  However, I think they would have known that it would get cold and be inedible from the previous couple days, and so would have figured out a way of dealing with it, such as to put some of it in their inner pockets (the food items they intended to eat that night, at least).

Agreed.  In those temps, I would think putting your next meal inside your jacket would help keep it at least maleable enough to eat it.  We do this with water bottles to keep them from freezing (although there are some temps where even that is impossible to avoid, lol!!)
-Ren
 

April 09, 2021, 08:21:54 AM
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Jean Daniel Reuss



  •••  In 1959, for all possible readers in Sverdlovsk (all hikers and even all young Russians in the UPI), it was obvious that Dyatlov's group was equipped with a means of heating (other than Dyatlov's experimental stove) to thaw food and melt snow and thus obtain (preferably hot) water for drinking.

This was so obvious that in the various texts we have, no one ever felt the need to explicitly mention this indispensable means of heating for winter hiking!

  •••  However, you can find an indication of this here:
Project plan for the expedition of Dyatlov group  --->  Sheet 199

https://dyatlovpass.com/case-files-199-208?rbid=17743

In the list   :    University equipment, see the line 17:
......................................
17 Warmer 4 Flasks
.................................

  •••  My free translation is :
 * Warmer = ( Грелка ) = liquid fuel for heating food using a simple, lightweight stove.
 * flask =  ( Фляги ) = transportable container of unknown capacity.

  •••  In the absence of details I assume or imagine that :
 * The liquid fuel was probably methylated spirits (composed mainly of ethanol, calorific value about 5000 kilocalories per litre).
 * A flask is a metal bottle with a capacity of at least 2 litres.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcohol_fuel
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethanol_fuel

In France, methylated spirits are always made undrinkable by adding to ethanol a little methanol (+ other products).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denatured_alcohol
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Methanol
In the USSR, methylated spirits may have been almost pure ethanol and therefore drinkable: I do not know !

Jean Daniel Reuss

Rational guidance =

• There is nothing supernatural and mysterious about the injuries suffered by the Dyatlov group. They are all consistent with an attack by a group of professional killers who wanted to take the lives of the nine  [Per Inge Oestmoen].

• Now let us search for answers to: WHO ? WHY ? HOW ?

• The scenario must be consistent with the historical, political and psychological  contexts.

• The solution takes in consideration all known findings.
 

April 09, 2021, 09:45:02 PM
Reply #4
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NightLurker


I COMPLETELY disagree.

Food items can be warmed up quickly just by placing them next to your body. We already know that investigators noticed un-eaten food on the floor of the tent. They didn't have time to finish it.
 

April 10, 2021, 09:25:09 PM
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Manti


Well, did they have waterproof clothing? I don't think so...

For this, it's also possible to do a recreation, though to be realistic you need to live in an area with temperatures around -20C, or have access to a freezer room. But try putting frozen meat or bread in your pockets or "next to your body".

If it's close enough to your body to defrost the food... not only will it feel very uncomfortable but also the melting ice (at least in case of meat) will wet your clothes / blanket, making the whole process even more uncomfortable, and rendering your clothes useless in those freezing temperatures.

So I think what Jean Daniel wrote is more plausible.

 

April 11, 2021, 01:39:18 PM
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RMK


I agree with Manti regarding the "warmer".  The university equipment list includes a "warmer" that involves "flasks".  Jean Daniel provides a reasonable interpretation of that documentary evidence, namely, that the Dyatlov hikers carried a small heating device that used a liquid fuel...or, at minimum, they at least planned to carry such a thing on their trek.
 

April 12, 2021, 03:24:39 PM
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Nigel Evans


Well, did they have waterproof clothing? I don't think so...

For this, it's also possible to do a recreation, though to be realistic you need to live in an area with temperatures around -20C, or have access to a freezer room. But try putting frozen meat or bread in your pockets or "next to your body".

If it's close enough to your body to defrost the food... not only will it feel very uncomfortable but also the melting ice (at least in case of meat) will wet your clothes / blanket, making the whole process even more uncomfortable, and rendering your clothes useless in those freezing temperatures.

So I think what Jean Daniel wrote is more plausible.


At the labaz food and drink would have been kept in positive temperatures until breaking camp @ 3pm. So it wouldn't be uncomfortable to carry food and drink (flask of cocoa) close to the body. So that's the evening meal sorted. In the morning they probably planned to get the stove going to thaw ski boots and outer clothing so melting snow for drinks wouldn't be a problem. Then an easy ski over to the forest below Ortorten for a night of luxury perhaps.
 

April 13, 2021, 08:30:07 PM
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Manti


At the labaz food and drink would have been kept in positive temperatures until breaking camp @ 3pm. So it wouldn't be uncomfortable to carry food and drink (flask of cocoa) close to the body. So that's the evening meal sorted. In the morning they probably planned to get the stove going to thaw ski boots and outer clothing so melting snow for drinks wouldn't be a problem. Then an easy ski over to the forest below Ortorten for a night of luxury perhaps.
How would food and drink be kept in positive temperatures? By keeping it in the tent and running the stove?

This is another thing I was wondering... if they kept their backpacks in the heated tent each night, then trekked with it on their backs... how would meat even remain unspoiled? It would thaw and re-freeze every day.. For this reason I assume they kept food outside the tent. Except food intended for the next meal.


Also.. I keep reading about frozen boots, clothes etc. Why would boots freeze? Do we suppose these got wet somehow? If so, they lose their insulating ability so become useless, so I assume their boots didn't get wet and therefore would not "freeze".
 

April 13, 2021, 10:23:24 PM
Reply #9
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Horsebite


Boots often freeze when you sweat in them and then take them off.  I've had this happen many times where you spend part of your morning thawing the boots on your feet.  I wonder if it isn't the reason that so many cold weather boots have wool-based liners.  I know my heavy winter boots (made by Sorel) stay pretty warm if you are moving, even if the liners might be a bit damp.  Dry socks are, of course, pretty crucial in that case. 

Was Sterno (at least that's what it is called in the US) a thing in the Soviet Union?  Small cans of sterno with alcohol in them were used around this time for heating camping food, particularly in harsh environments.  Perhaps they had something like that for quick food heating without needing to use their wood stove. 
 

April 14, 2021, 04:44:01 AM
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Nigel Evans


At the labaz food and drink would have been kept in positive temperatures until breaking camp @ 3pm. So it wouldn't be uncomfortable to carry food and drink (flask of cocoa) close to the body. So that's the evening meal sorted. In the morning they probably planned to get the stove going to thaw ski boots and outer clothing so melting snow for drinks wouldn't be a problem. Then an easy ski over to the forest below Ortorten for a night of luxury perhaps.
How would food and drink be kept in positive temperatures? By keeping it in the tent and running the stove?That would be sensible yes? As i see it they're giving themselves the best chance for a night on the ridge, set off late (3pm) having dried all the clothing and kit out. Then a short 2 hour ascent with the night's food and drink kept warm against bodies.

This is another thing I was wondering... if they kept their backpacks in the heated tent each night, then trekked with it on their backs... how would meat even remain unspoiled? It would thaw and re-freeze every day.. For this reason I assume they kept food outside the tent. Except food intended for the next meal.
Before the labaz i'd agree it's sensible.

Also.. I keep reading about frozen boots, clothes etc. Why would boots freeze? Do we suppose these got wet somehow? If so, they lose their insulating ability so become useless, so I assume their boots didn't get wet and therefore would not "freeze". The outer layers (gaiters?) would be getting damp?
 

April 14, 2021, 07:26:25 AM
Reply #11
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RMK


This is another thing I was wondering... if they kept their backpacks in the heated tent each night, then trekked with it on their backs... how would meat even remain unspoiled? It would thaw and re-freeze every day.. For this reason I assume they kept food outside the tent. Except food intended for the next meal.
I always assumed that the meat they were carrying had already been cooked, and had been preserved by smoking and/or salting it.  I'm imagining it was something like jerky, and that it had such little water content that when frozen, it wasn't an icy "meatsicle", just really chewy.  I admit I have no idea how accurate my mental picture is, though.
 

April 14, 2021, 08:14:24 AM
Reply #12
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Nigel Evans


This is another thing I was wondering... if they kept their backpacks in the heated tent each night, then trekked with it on their backs... how would meat even remain unspoiled? It would thaw and re-freeze every day.. For this reason I assume they kept food outside the tent. Except food intended for the next meal.
I always assumed that the meat they were carrying had already been cooked, and had been preserved by smoking and/or salting it.  I'm imagining it was something like jerky, and that it had such little water content that when frozen, it wasn't an icy "meatsicle", just really chewy.  I admit I have no idea how accurate my mental picture is, though.


My memory is "smoked loin". I don't think they would carry fresh meat.
 

April 14, 2021, 09:26:34 AM
Reply #13
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KFinn


This is another thing I was wondering... if they kept their backpacks in the heated tent each night, then trekked with it on their backs... how would meat even remain unspoiled? It would thaw and re-freeze every day.. For this reason I assume they kept food outside the tent. Except food intended for the next meal.
I always assumed that the meat they were carrying had already been cooked, and had been preserved by smoking and/or salting it.  I'm imagining it was something like jerky, and that it had such little water content that when frozen, it wasn't an icy "meatsicle", just really chewy.  I admit I have no idea how accurate my mental picture is, though.


My memory is "smoked loin". I don't think they would carry fresh meat.

Agreed.  Although my hiking is a bit different I know, being Viking age, we only bring cured or smoked meats.  We do it to be more authentic but also because its safer than trying to keep fresh meat on a trail when safe food practices and hygiene are limited.  I would assume the same for "regular" trekking...  I've always heard it as smoked for Dyatlov but that could be assumption on my part.
-Ren
 

April 14, 2021, 09:40:51 AM
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Tony


several searchers made statements that several biscuits were found lying around in side the tent and, it is thought, that this is what the group was eating at the time of leaving the tent.
"If there exists a fact which can only be thought of as sinister. A fact which can only point to some sinister underpinning, you will never be able to think up all the non-sinister, perfectly valid explanations for that fact."
- Josiah Thomson
 

April 14, 2021, 02:07:36 PM
Reply #15
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Manti


So here are my assumptions:
  • Their rusk /  biscuit was сухарь, essentially the same as German zwieback: sweet bread that is baked again, this dries it out and makes its shelf life long.
  • Their smoked loin was Сало, it's often smoked and pre-cooked, but even then it needs to be kept refrigerated so I might be wrong about this one...

The latter might be what is called "bacon" in the US, sorry it's strange but I never had bacon.
These were both common, inexpensive staples even back then.

  • If the meat was something that didn't require refrigeration, perhaps it was Борц: This originates from Mongolia I believe but I don't know if it would have been commonly available in Sverdlovsk in the 50s.
 

April 14, 2021, 02:35:32 PM
Reply #16
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Dona


Looks yummy but, it too would  be frozen solid.. I know the bacon in my freezer is.  dunno1

Too bad Yuri Yudin has passed.. someone could have asked him.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2021, 03:53:35 PM by Dona »
 

April 14, 2021, 06:27:18 PM
Reply #17
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NightLurker


LOVE ME SOME BACON!!!

But no, I STILL disagree. Everybody here is getting into the weeds with this. These kids were NOT NOVICES. They were NOT carrying around uncooked food. That would be STUPID. All food they carried would have been pre-cooked. We ALL know that COOKED chicken lasts in the fridge LONGER than UNCOOKED. As this NONSENSE keeps going, COOKED BACON will last a good THREE DAYS in aluminum foil. COLD OR WARM. Cooked HAM the same way. Actually, it tastes BETTER as a jerky, as the salt keeps it intact. This was done on sailing ships centuries past. Salted meat stays better for MONTHS.

Why are some of you disregarding this FACT?

Get back to the actual idea of how and why this happened instead of focusing on whether the food went bad or not. The WEEDS are NOT where we belong. The food was FINE even when investigators found it on the floor of the tent. Even BACON will last a few days on the dashboard of your car. Don't start with me.

I won't be back to this particular thread because I think ALL of you are missing the point.

Enjoy.

 

 

April 14, 2021, 06:41:11 PM
Reply #18
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Dona


Code: [Select]
We are, well I am, looking at the food as there was no campfire at the tent. For me, its whether the tent was ever there.. Others have their reasons.

And, remember, that food, raw or cooked, is kept at temperatures 40 degrees colder than our home freezer.. They would need a skill saw with a diamond blade to cut it without some way of heating it..
« Last Edit: April 14, 2021, 07:02:40 PM by Dona »
 

April 15, 2021, 02:32:05 AM
Reply #19
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Nigel Evans


https://dyatlovpass.com/case-files-309-312?rbid=17743

In the tent were found 9 backpacks, 9 pairs of skis, all of them were under the tent floor, 8 pairs of boots, 3.5 pairs of felt boots, quilted jackets and many biscuits, half a sack of sugar, a large number of concentrates, cereals, soups, etc., cocoa, axes, saw, cameras, students diaries, documents and money. At first glance, the tent was covered with snow. It was pitched on a leveled site that the students dug out. The middle part of the windy side of the tent was torn. The bottom of the tent was covered with padded jackets, backpacks and personal belongings of the students. In the right corner, near the entrance there was a part of the products: cans of condensed milk, 100 grams of sliced ​​lard, biscuits, sugar, a flask empty from alcohol or vodka, the smell was dissipated, a flask with cocoa drink prepared with water so naturally it was frozen, near the cuts of lard i found a big knife
 

April 15, 2021, 10:25:59 AM
Reply #20

eurocentric

Guest
The diaries refer to dried meats and canned meats, and the labaz had 8 day's worth (the tent 3) of cooked sausages, canned meats and what the labaz finders called brisket.

https://dyatlovpass.com/maslennikov-notebook-2

The dried meat would likely be air-dried, and a diary entry reveals this is what they ate on the go. Unknown Diary, Jan 30th "At approximately 2 pm we stop for a lunch. Dried meat, guest crackers, sugar, garlic, coffee, stocked in the morning - that's our lunch."

If they had any raw meats I suspect these would be consumed when the weather permitted a fire, and if they were too tired or it was too windy they'd revert to their ready-meals, as it were.

I always thought it odd they didn't have a rifle on this hike, not just for defence when out in the wilderness, but also to hunt with should they be holed up through bad weather and their provisions ran out. Previous hikes tend to show 1 if not 2 rifles.

Presumably on this one the idea was to take lots of prepared meats, which in turn added weight (including 3kgs of salt which may have been to help preserve things) and this weight may have seen them dispense with some useful things, such as the radio Igor normally took with him (which, I don't know, may have provided weather forecasts to inform them of an incoming storm, assuming they could get reception when at altitude).

It's interesting to consider the possibility of food poisoning or other poisoning on this hike, because the DPI isn't really just about the mystery of their final night, it's also the number of odd things which led up to it, and if they were not functioning normally, so they didn't have their wits about them, then their survival odds when faced with a storm might be poor despite their apparent 'experience'.

For example top-of-the-class Zina repeatedly didn't know what month or even year it was in her diary, and also misunderstood how a camera aperture works in part of her notes. Aleksander, unless lying, told them it was his birthday on 30th, the day after Yuri D's, when it was 16th November. Lyuda behaved as if clinically depressed from Vizhay onwards, and looked very pale on the hike, and she spent that 'birthday' party inside the tent. There seemed to be some bickering going on, recorded in diary entries, people not attending to their duties, including wake up calls.

Nobody except Igor made a diary entry the day before they died, and although detailed, his final sentence suggested they'd be "hundreds of kilometres away from human settlements" if up on the Ural ridge, when they were at best 50kms from Vizhay. They also misnavigated by going up the wrong pass. And what sort of decision making has a group of experienced hikers ascending a mountain at 3pm, a couple of hours off nightfall, as a storm approaches.

As the hike progressed, from day 2 or 3 onwards, they seemed to struggle more and more, their progress slowed to a crawl, they had to jettison weight, and yet another group in broadly the same conditions managed to complete their trek.

One possible explanation for this would be E.coli. It can affect mental functioning, cognition and memory, left untreated it can cause brain damage. And seizures are common, potentially explaining fluid around the mouth, and superficial injuries to hands and heads. It can make people bad tempered, pale, and have aches in their flanks/back, which would increase the burden of carrying weight. It can also affect the urinary system and cause fluid retention, so thinking here of how Igor's bladder was fit-to-burst at autopsy, with a litre of urine.

It doesn't usually cause vomiting, more the runs. If looking for potential evidence of that, there was mention in the diaries of Tibo changing his clothing, and it's hard to see why that would otherwise be a noteworthy thing to record. The 'yeti' photo shows a man, possibly Yuri K, who does not have his trousers on. Semyon's autopsy revealed he had soiled himself, and though we don't know exactly what she meant, Nurse Solter said the hikers were "very dirty".

E.coli typically has an incubation period of around 3 to 4 days. Had their own foodstuffs been contaminated then unless they'd already consumed the bad stuff the rescue team should also have been affected because they consumed the food found in the labaz. So this makes me wonder about that evening meal they had at Vizhay, which Blinov's group avoided as they didn't stay the night. Goulash and cold tea. E.coli can be in water, and goulash is the sort of stew any old meat can be hidden in, and possibly reheated.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2021, 11:30:44 AM by eurocentric »
 

April 15, 2021, 05:44:26 PM
Reply #21
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Manti


Yes I agree, food poisoning is a possibility, not only with escherichia coli but also for example clostridium botulinum.

This can grow in improperly canned food, and still seems to occur in North Korea for example.. we shouldn't overestimate 50s soviet technology and food safety. It it enough for only one can to be contaminated.
 

April 15, 2021, 07:08:12 PM
Reply #22
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Paf


I agree the food poisoning could be the original problem, and with their relative inexperience. (even in their gear there are some things i don't understand. The most obvious being the 3kg of salt and the mandoline !)


For the "frozen" provisions I don't agree...

According to the diary (and to logic), the first thing they were making when stoping was fire. Outside fire.
Of course, it was not possible on the ridge ; but I think they used to boil their water on those fire, not on fuel stove.

For meat and bread, if they had just one bottle of hot tea in their backpack with it and between extra clothing, it would not have quite frozen within a day. 
((I used to fear for my eggs when coming back from shopping by cold temp. (15 minute walk by -40°C), but only salad actually suffer that quick, and my bags were not insulated at all.  And from my experience, it's actually better insulated in a backpack than in a pocket.))
I assume they were making tea every morning for the whole day.

Now, "fire was not possible on the ridge". So why did they stop ?
 There is mention of a broken ski (in this site, "search", "the tent", at the very bottom under the discarder flashlite shema) and of an injuried ankle (Kolevatov). Maybe one or the other was the reason ?
« Last Edit: April 15, 2021, 08:28:40 PM by Paf »
 

April 16, 2021, 07:56:36 PM
Reply #23
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Manti


They had a spare set of skis though right? So one broken ski is not necessarily reason to stop and set up camp in an unfavourable place .. the forest is close even just walking without skis..

I don't know whether they had thermal flasks or not.. if yes then sure they could have made hot tea for the whole day in the morning and the food issue becomes a lot less mysterious.
 

April 17, 2021, 05:32:33 PM
Reply #24
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Paf


For what I undertand, there was 8 pairs of ski under the tent and 1 "spare one" on the side ? so no real "spare" at the tente site. But there was one at Labaz.

If there was a broken ski (or any "piece of broken ski" : it can a piece of binding that broke, what could explain some people do mention 8/9 pairs without mentioning damaged one.), could the tent be a very temporary setting, to shelter some of them while other go back for the spare pair ?
That could be ; but then "something" would have had to happen really, really quick (since nobody left on ski - and the spare is still at Labaz).

There are for me 4 personnes on both tent setting photo : I think, on both the 4 personne is on the ground with his hand taking support at the bottom of the backpack on the right. It can be mistaken for the arm of the personne who's turning his back to the camera. On the second photo, I see this "back personne" leaning toward the "sitting" one, and the guy at the back looking as well at the sitting personne.
So somebody (Kolevatov ankle ?) could have been hurt in addition of breaking the ski. We know (wrapping in his pocket) Kolevatov took at least 1 painkiller, so he would have need a break. That's why the whole team didn't turn around, but they just plan to send one or two of them for the skis (whatever they wanted to do the next day, back un or go on : Kolevatov would have need the ski same thing in the forest before to reach Labaz or to go on the hike).