Week 1 (January 17/27 – January 31, 2015

The 2015 Caracol field season actually began on January 17, when the initial four men were brought into camp to begin readying the facilities for our 31st year of research at the site. On January 22, they were joined by another man and by the four ladies who are responsible for the kitchen and laundry. On Sunday, January 26, Arlen Chase arrived in Cayo to help finish preparations for the camp and to meet with the Belizean authorities. The permit was collected from John Morris, the Director of the Institute of Archaeology (and a UCF alumnus) on Monday. On Tuesday, a trip was made to Caracol to bring in some fresh meat and vegetables, as well as to talk with the cooks and men in order to ascertain what was needed in the kitchen, whether the correct groups were being bushed, and whether the camp repairs were on track to be finished before the students and staff arrived. Another motive for this trip was to confirm a date on a new altar that had been reported from the site by one of the tour guides to Jaime Awe, who had forwarded a washed-out picture of it to us; the monument was located atop Structure A13 (and was pretty much unknown to everybody back at the site) and a date of 8 Ahau 8 Mol was confirmed on it, making this the latest known Caracol monument at 10.2.15.0.0 (A.D. 884). On Wednesday, a new full-size freezer that runs on solar energy (the old butane one had worked for over a decade, but no amount of prodding could get it up and running for the 2015 field season) was sent into the site along with a massive load of dry goods and hardware from Belmopan. On Thursday two full coolers of meat and four more men were sent into Caracol along with one student who had been in Belize since the beginning of the New Year. On Friday, Diane Chase arrived in Belize and on Saturday we picked up six more UCF students along with our long-standing staff member Maureen Carpenter; Brian Woodye helped get all of us into camp by 4 PM that afternoon. Everyone moved into the various huts and situated themselves while Diane and I went to the top of Structure A13 and photographed the new monument with an elaborate flash setting. The resultant photograph was remarkably crisp and revealed a lot of detail on the new altar. The iconographic scene is one of two seated individuals facing each other, with the one on the right making a gesture of submission or alliance; both are named in the accompanying hieroglyphic text. And with this wonderful start, the first week of the Caracol field season was launched.

Initial Lunch at Amigos with Brian Woodye (UCF Alumnus to the right)

Initial Lunch at Amigos with Brian Woodye (UCF Alumnus to the right)

Diane with new Caracol Monument in situ

Diane with new Caracol Monument in situ

The New Caracol Terminal Classic Altar

The New Caracol Terminal Classic Altar

 

 

4 Responses to “Week 1 (January 17/27 – January 31, 2015

  • Glad to hear everyone arrived safely and looking forward to reading about the 2015 season. What an amazing discovery. Thanks for the great photo. Wishing all a safe and productive season.

  • So nice to hear that all arrived safely. What an exciting discovery & kudos to you all on your commitment & tenacity in sharing your discoveries. We are so proud!

  • My wife and I made the run into your site last week. The reservoir with water in it was unusual. The main temple was of the Calakmul style. I got a few facebook comments on your camp hotwater system.
    A general observation:I like the Belizean method of access to the temples. The natural looking stone steps up the back instead of the wooden scaffolding so common in Mayaland.

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