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PostPosted: June 24th, 2014, 9:04 am 
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Melting Yukon ices reveals 5,000-year-old archaeological treasures

An odd, barnyard-y smell in the ice patch uncovered a treasure trove of ancient tools

By John Geddes | Maclean's – Sun, 22 Jun, 2014

...

A short section of a dart shaft was the very first artifact found to launch the remarkable, ongoing saga of Yukon ice patch archeology. Back in 1997, a local husband and wife were hunting Dall sheep up in the southern Yukon mountains, when they smelled something barnyardy, and found that the odour was coming from a mound of melting caribou dung. The strange thing was that caribou hadn’t been seen in the area for many years. That led to a sequence of investigations, including radiocarbon dating of the dung and then that first fragment of a dart, and finally to a grasp on what was happening: Climate change was eating away at the edges of mountain ice patches, revealing droppings left by caribou herds thousands of years ago—and tools lost by the hunters who had once pursued them.

According to Hare, climate conditions on about two dozen Yukon mountains have proven to be almost uniquely suited to preserving organic material. Unlike glaciers that move, slowly grinding down any artifacts trapped in them, the Yukon ice patches tend to remain stable. Or at least they did, until gradual warming over the past several decades began to shrink them and reveal treasures. Among the finds: wooden darts as old as nearly 9,000 years, some complete with stone points, sinew bindings, bits of feather and traces of ochre decoration; a finely carved, barbed antler projectile point from about 1,200 years ago; and a size-four moccasin, 1,400 years old, amazingly intact, and believed to be a boy’s. “Some of it is very beautiful,” Hare says.

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https://ca.news.yahoo.com/melting-yukon ... 56891.html

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PostPosted: June 24th, 2014, 9:39 am 
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I bet somebody borrowed them and forgot to return them!!

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