July 2, 2020

High Altitude Archaeology in the American West

Colorado State archaeologists are continuing to study a site called High Rise village occupied 4000 years ago by the nomadic Shoshone people. This is one of the two dozen high elevation sites in the Wind River Mountains.

Alpine archaeology is a new field that was made possible by new and lighter equipment, In the 1960’s, miles of stone walls were found constructed to corral bighorn sheep. In the 1980’s, alpine villages at 12,000 feet were found in California, Nevada, and Colorado. It was long thought that these high altitude places were too hostile for sustained human occupation. Archaeologists are now trying to determine if people were driven there by population pressure or climate change.

Archaeology.org has the report here;

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr