Monday, April 16, 2012

Lake of Skeletons

Roopkund Lake is a glacial Himalayan lake in India. Also known as "Skeleton Lake, it is more than 16,000 feet above sea level and it is nestled in a steep valley. Skeleton Lake was made known to the world  in 1942. That year, a British "forest guard" stumbled upon the frozen lake and its horrifying contents. At the shores of the lake, he saw numerous human skeletons. 

A study was done on the recovered human remains to see who these skeletons were, and caused their deaths. The study revealed that the skeletons were quite old and had been there for a long time. The remains of more than 200 people have been found, though there is speculation more are on the bottom of the lake.

In 2004, the skeletons of were officially dated to 850 C.E. They may have belonged to a group of travelers, as evidenced by possessions found on the skeletons and the fact that there is no evidence of a settlement.  All of the skeletons show signs of having been hit on the head and shoulders with round, blunt objects. This is most likely the cause of death. That does not sound like war, disease or famine. The scientists concluded that the trauma was caused by an extreme hailstorm.

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