Zolotartov's brother, Nikolay, was wounded in battle in 1942. After his release from the hospital, he returned to his home village. That region of Russia was overrun by the German army in 1943. Nikolay then served in his village's police unit under the local occupation administration. I'm not sure what his duties involved, but when the Russian army reclaimed the region some months later, Nikolay was charged with treason and executed in August 1943.
After the war, Zolotaryov applied to a couple of military schools, but was rejected. He then worked in various jobs in different towns and was "fired" from at least two of them. If he felt persecuted because of his brother, who could blame him. Perhaps he no longer felt any allegiance to the Soviet Union when he joined the Dyatlov group in 1959. Just speculation on my part. Perhaps he had the motivation to turn over secret documents to the CIA. But in this scenario, the KGB is tipped off and confronts the hikers on the slope of 1079. The tragic events followed.