Artifacts Of The Northern Rockies 

Ever since I was a kid I always been interested in archaeology I’m always on the lookout for arrowheads and stone tools when I’m out hiking the trails in the northern rockies. 
 

Looking Down At Summit Lake. .
 

In the summer 2014, I finally found an artifact after years of looking I was just getting to the top of hill in Stone Mountain Provincial Park when I saw this black pointed stone sticking out of the trail. So I reached down and picked it up and brushed off all the dirt and said to my self, this kind of looks like an arrowhead! So I grabbed my camera out of my bag and started to take pictures of the artifact, I also wrote down my GPS coordinates and took lots of video.

  

Macroblade On The Trail .
 
    

When I got back in cell service later that night I sent the pictures to my archaeologist friend Jordan Handley she used to live in my home town of Fort Nelson, B.C. I told her in my msg I think I found an arrowhead! she sent me back a replay saying that’s not a arrowhead, that’s a macroblade, so I’m thinking to my self, what the hell is a macroblade! then she said it was a small knife that was most likely hafted to wood or bone. If you look closely at the blade  you can see scratches on it probably from a ancient hunter cutting against bone.

 

Scratches On Macroblade.
 
  
With my friend Jordan helping me, we sent all my pictures and info to the BC archaeology branch, later that month they sent me back this reply.

  

Macroblade Size.

Good Afternoon! 

Earlier this month we received your information about a lithic artifact (blade) found in the Summit Lake area. I have entered the artifact location as an archaeological site in the provincial heritage register. Its permanent Borden number is ##### Thank you Chris for recording the find, and thank you Jordan for forwarding Chris’ info to the Archaeology Branch. The photos (especially the location shots) are better than what we receive from many professional archaeologists 

thanks again for taking the time to collect all the information and sending it to the Arch Branch. Your video is actually the first one we’ve ever received as part of a site record and it has sparked conversations here about new ways we might consider collecting site data. Very cool 🙂   

Back Of Macroblade.

So the next summer in 2015, I was hiking in the same area, this time it’s getting dark and I’m a long ways from my vehicle so I decide to take a shortcut back to my truck, so I start following a game trail through the tall brush back to the Alaska Highway.

 As i was getting close to the bottom of the mountain, I see this black rock on the ground beside a bunch of grey boulders, so I picked it up and held it in my hand, the first thing I saw was a bulb percussion mark caused by impact when the knapper was making the tool, looks like I found another blade! this time it’s bigger then the one I found the previous year. 

Chert Blade, Northern Rockies .
 

It was getting too dark to take pictures of the site, so I put the artifact back on the ground where I found it and headed back home.

Chert Blade On Ground .

I returned to the site a few days later with all my camera gear and took video and still shots. I still had lots of time left in the day, so I decided to hike up to the site from last year were I found the macroblade. It was only 20 minutes up the mountain, so I packed up my bag and made my way up the trail. 

As I was getting close to the old site, I sat down on a large rock and had a drink of fresh river water from my bottle and I start looking up at the hills, and down at the valley, I started thinking to my self, this place would be great for hunting I can see everything around me, I even saw a few caribou as I was sitting there thinking about ancient hunters.  

Mountain Caribou.
 
I spent probably an hour looking around the old site seeing if I missed anything from the year before and sure enough I started seeing chert flakes scattered all over the ground, this looks like a spot where a hunter made a tool, or maybe even the macroblade I found only 15 yards away.
 
Chert Debitage Scattered All Over The Ground.
 

All the artifacts I found are still up on the mountain. Archaeological sites, including the artifacts found within them, are protected under the Heritage Conservation Act and must not be altered or collected without a permit from the Archaeology Branch. When I’m out hiking, I always look for surface artifacts,I never dig in the ground or disturb sites. I only take pictures, and video, and always report my finds. Enjoy!  www.wildnorthphotos.com

Close Up Of Chert Blade

  

 
  
 

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