25th to 29th March: New finds and features from Trench 2

Posted by steven on 29/03/2005 at 08:22 PM

Improved weather conditions have assisted the excavation of Trench 2 at the High Pastures site.  Several new finds and features have been recovered.

The excavation of Trench 2 at the High Pastures site has continued and good progress has been made.  Assisted by Ann and Mike Kibby, George and Steven are peeling back the layers of archaeology and have made some interesting finds.

Figure 1.  The hearth setting uncovered in the northwest sector of Trench 2 and the post hole in the foreground, the latter built within the tumbled granite cobble wall (Scale=0.25m).

Excavation in the east end of the trench continued to uncover a buff-coloured sediment, comprising the natural subsoil containing a few flecks of charcoal.  This sediment stands out against the dark, organic-rich soil, which contains abundant fire-cracked stone and pebbles, and which most likely forms the fill of the blocked entrance shaft into High Pasture Cave (see Fig.3 below).

Figure 2.  The area of buff-coloured sediment in the east end of Trench 2 (Scale=2m).  Also note the small holes in the trench - vertical voids containing roots that may be working down into the blocked entrance to the cave.

By the 29th March we had removed the dense layer of fire-cracked angular stones overlying the buff-coloured sediment in the east end of the trench.  A small hollow or pit was found cutting slightly into the buff layer containing fire-cracked pebbles, charcoal and peat ash.  This may be some form of cooking pit.  A second post hole was also uncovered in the NE sector of the trench, containing burnt material in the top of the fill (see image below).  We shall section the feature tommorrow to see what it contains.  Meanwhile, Ann, Mike and I continued to excavate the darker organic-rich layers above the shaft entrance, uncovering what may be another post hole and two areas of burning.  These areas also contain large pieces of charcoal and fragments of burnt bone, while sieving of the residues produced a few charred cereal grains.  Excavation will also continue on these features tommorrow.

Figure 3.  Excavation in progress in Trench 2 on the 29th March.  Note the buff layer and the post hole in the near corner of the trench.

Visit the site soon to catch up on progress!

Next entry: 6th April, 2005: A return to winter conditions at the High Pastures excavation

Previous entry: 22nd - 24th March: Fine weather and more results from Trench 2

Posted by on 30/03/2005 at 09:44 PM

Hi Stephen

Thank you for a wonderful tour of down under.  What an amazing place.  We cannot wait to hear what happens next.  The whole site is so professionally run.  I had no idea that archaeology could be so fascinating.  Watch out for George’s diet.  Less meat means more wind!

Yours with great appreciation for a great afternoon.

Liz and Peter

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