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There are many legends about the appearance of the statues. Mansis or, as they are also called, the Voguls say that these stone statues are what was left of the seven Samoyed warriors who had come over the mountains to destroy the Mansi people. However, once they reached Manpupuner, their leader saw the Voguls’ sacred mountain of Jalpingner in front of him and he and his companions turned into stone statues. According to another stody, a local shaman turned to warriors into statues.
Originally posted by pieman
pretty cool, they look quite volcanic to me, the thing that sprung to mind immediately were underwater black smokers, but they're not underwater so probably not.