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Defeat and Victory

August 27, 2013

The siteWith one more day to dig – we are down to permafrost. We will see where we’re at tomorrow, but either way we are defeated again. It will not melt, and we will not be able to take even the western trench in area A down to natural. Permafrost prevails also in area B. Even though the cultural deposits are removed almost entirely, one corner remains frozen solid. Ellen managed to get maybe two cm off today. In the end we might have to leave the stupid little corner to its destiny. No information of importance will be lost due to that – but it is annoying. Area BArea AOn one point we are starting to feel cautiously victorious however. Yesterday afternoon Rick had an idea based on some of the features revealed in the bottom of the trench – he started to suspect that the tunnel we thought we had found last year actually do exist – just not where we thought. The mistake we’ve made was to think that the tunnel would be under the boardwalk, but why would it be in the same place? It would only weaken the structure in all fairness. Today the idea was strengthened by what was found when the sod wall feature was removed – we are almost confident enough to say that we do have a tunnel fill in profile wall. Should this be right many of the features would be explained, and the burnt house would almost make sense… Next year we will test the theory (by digging), but for now it is our working hypotheses.

Back filling a go go!Back filling has started properly. Mike came with John and Daniel to help out, and some serious dirt got moved. The whole south block is now re-turfed, and a large part of area A is filled with dirt again. It is sad and satisfying in the same time – to see the site disappear before your eyes (especially sad knowing that we have to move that same stupid dirt a fifth(!) time next year…). It has been a great and intense season, but now we are all rather tired and long for a rest and some quiet time to process the experience (and the gazillion artefacts, faunal bones, dirt bags and fur balls we have retrieved) in a few days time. But first we have a last day of digging, a fantastic community showing of artefacts, and some more back filling to look forward to!


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