Wednesday 11 July 2012

Live From the Hotel Skalní Mlýn, Moravian Karst, Near Blansko, Czech Republic.

Morning espresso. Sunshine. Waiting to start the day. Hotel Skalní Mlýn.

The crew will arrive in their nine-seater Mecedes van in about half an hour.
For the time being only one meter-square excavtion unit is being plumbed. Most, if not all of the excavated sediments are transported to the valley floor from the cave about 100 m up the cliff. A small team is tasked with wet seiving in the nearby Punkva River, frosty cold from its long underground journey through the Moravian karst. I and a couple of students are washing the faunal remains recovered in situ, and I'm pawing through the dried bulk samples. We work in the kitchen of a condemned building that was an outpost of the Czech Geological Survey. It's about 100 m from where I'm sitting right now at the hotel. This photo was taken yesterday in the 'lab.

Pod hradem Cave has a very slight imprint of human activity, and through the first week and a half of the 2012 season not a one lithic artifact has been recovered. The crew are, understandably, a little hungry for something other than cave bear remains. I see what the excavators don't, which usually includes foetal or neonate bits, and much carnivore-modified mature bear long-bone fragments. As was the case with the material recovered in the 1950s, with which I'm very familiar, that carnivore is almost certainly a large canid--one of the extra-large Pleistocene flavour.
Live, from the Skalní Mlýn Hotel, this is the subversive arrchaeologist.

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  1. It's a tough job, Rob, but somebody's got to do it.

  2. YouA can say that again, old Man. Pip pip. Cheerio! One must soldier on through the storm and all that! I'm Very glad that we're 'in touch' again, Spawn! I've missed your potent wit!


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