Wednesday, 16 May 2012

May 15th: The Plot Thickens

Day 7 is plotting the grid map and making note of the flagged items found during Monday's survey. We also learned what determining pace means: to measure the length of each of our individual walking strides. This helps us aid in mapping from the site datum. After taking a close look at the areas we have surveyed and deciding where we think we might want to dig, we laid out several 2 x 2 meter excavation units. We will be paired up and assigned a unit to share, which will be defined with string. This is a pretty common size of excavation unit and it's large enough to fit two people in one area.We will be mapping everything we find in our excavations in accordance with the site datum.

Spencer K. holding an early 1900's tin can that we found today. This one is mostly intact as the majority of the cans we uncover are in several scattered pieces.

A hundred year old rusty metal bucket. A common misconception about things made of metal is that they last forever which is far from true. Metal breaks down pretty quickly and if I remember correctly, Bob told us that there are some places in the world where they store nuclear waste in metal drums which is a somewhat scary thought.

Jasmin, Evan, Rebecca and Ryan doing some measurements of the site. It's important to mark things on the map accurately for documentation of where we end up finding artifacts. 

Spencer M. and Rebecca measuring and marking an excavation unit on the map. Based on the results of our land surveys and making guesses based on proximity to things found in previous Field Schools at this site, we can determine where a good spot might be to dig. 

Sometimes you have to move stuff out of the way in the name of science. This is Spencer K. and Nathan getting another excavation unit prepped for digging. Quite often areas where there might be artifacts get overgrown with vegetation, but that does not deter or brave crew.

Step 1: Measure. Step 2: Gather everyone around to check it out. Step 3: Map it. Alexis, Ryan, Jasmin and Nathan are getting this measurement just right.

Ryan will be sure to check all measurements and markings for perfection. I'd assume it's safe to say that he looks satisfied. Oh wait, maybe a little to the left, there we go.

Lindsay, Willow, Ryan and Nathan measuring for an excavation unit. As you can see, the cross-legged crouch position that Nathan is in makes for an almost meditative state of mental perfection. There will be no mistakes or corners cut on this unit, that's for sure.

This is Spencer K....he has the trusty metal detector out and is checking this excavation unit quite carefully. Spencer worked on the 2007 Archaeology Field School with Capilano and has been kind enough to donate his personal time to help us out with this dig. Spencer has knack for spotting anything metal...cans, tins, etc. We are so lucky to have an experienced person like him to give us a hand.

Rebecca and Andrew making field notes by their excavation unit. Andrew has his trusty tape measure conveniently hooked to his pants like a good student.

Tomorrow is the first day of excavations. We are all so excited, it's like the night before Christmas and we can't wait to see what we find. 

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