Site Update: July '09
by Chelsea Rose
Since Time Team America visited Range Creek, Duncan and his crew have been busy. They have transferred Meg and Bryan's magnetometry maps into a format that can be overlaid on existing site maps. This adds another layer of information — an underground layer, if you will — that can be used to show the relationships between what they found in their units and what still lies hidden beneath the soil. This new data will help the Range Creek team make a game plan for this season's excavation. In an exciting new twist, analysis on material recovered from what we dubbed, the "mystery pit house" suggests this feature was not a pit house at all. Rather, archaeological evidence suggests it was a large storage structure. According to Duncan, "this adds another level of complexity to the storage strategies of the Fremont people." In contrast to the remote cliff-side granaries, these structures would have been "the most prominent part of the Fremont village."
Paleoecologist Larry Coats also sent us this update about the survey work he's doing on the high ridges in Range Creek Canyon:
"When I was in the helicopter with Colin I spotted two new high sites in the canyon. We did the climbs to reach them last month. Both are significant sites, with many features that I can only interpret to be defensive.
We named the one site the Mushroom, for the overhanging nature of all sides of the pinnacle. The structure shown is on the western side of the formation, overlooking a narrow ridge. The other site is named for the famous Scaffold Granary, and since the site is above, we named it the Scaffold Ridge. The round alignment of rocks caught my eye from the copter and as you can see it is a serious structure. Both sites had artifacts ranging from metates to projectile points and hammerstones."
See Larry's photos of the two sites.