The story that Culturalmente Imparando is dealing with today could be the perfect scenario for a horror film. Its gloomy setting and the halo of mystery that surrounds this discovery fascinate the most curious and make the most sensitive tremble.
We are more than 5 thousand meters above sea level, between the peaks of the Himalaya, where there is a very small lake of just 40 meters in diameter called Roopkund lake. A pool of water, often frozen, but with a terrifying nickname: in fact, this lake is known worldwide as Skeleton Lake, since the bones of hundreds of people have been found around it.
The discovery of this chilling Asian lake dates back to the years of the Second World War, when a British soldier came across one, or rather, several skeletons on the shore.
It has not yet been possible to give a concrete explanation to solve the mystery of Roopkund Lake, due to the deterioration of certain bones and the manipulations they have undergone: some skeletons, in fact, have been moved and their bones mixed in order to create bizarre monuments . One thing is certain: thanks to the studies of an international group of researchers, it was possible to distinguish three genetically different groups, coming from India, Greece and South-East Asia. Moreover, the three groups would have lived in three completely distinct eras, constituting a period of about 1300 years (from 600 AD to 1900 AD).
But what was the cause of death?
As in any case, the mythical component is not missing: the men and women found around the lake would have been killed by the goddess Nanda Devi, offended by their behavior. There is also claims that the cause was a terrible storm or a rare epidemic.
Instead, what National Geographic tries to demonstrate represents an interesting hypothesis: it is known that for a long time pilgrims went there for the "Nanda Devi Raj Jat", to pay homage to the goddess Nanda Devi. According to the NG, in fact, it was on the occasion of these pilgrimages (or even of simple excursions, since the lake is a famous excursion destination) that the faithful and the climbers would have died under the hailstorms. In fact, several skulls have fractures to the skull and umbrellas typical of religious processions have also been found.
However, nothing has been confirmed, so much so that the lake remains a true mystery and fascinates tourists from all over the world.
Nature.com - https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-11357-9
Unsplash - https://unsplash.com/photos/BuCjN9qQEIs