Extreme Archaeology

2004, Science  -  50 min Leave a Comment
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Series aiming to excavate difficult archaeological sites all over Britain, with the help of Dr Mark Davies and a team of young diggers.

Bridge on the River Wye - Traveling to the site of a Roman bridge in the Wye Valley, South Wales. They hope to date the structure, as well as gather artifacts and evidence steadily being destroyed by climate change.

Living on the Edge - Exploring one of Britain's most remote and inaccessible sites, the Kame of Isbister off the north coast of Shetland. The group must gather and record as much data about the site as possible, establishing a date and function for the dwellings, and finding out the rate of erosion damage.

Cannibals and Cavemen - Exploring caves beneath Culzean Castle in Scotland. Their mission is to collect evidence and determine whether the caverns were linked to the castle via a tunnel. Radar and laser scanning technology is used to produce a 3D representation of the cave interior and artefacts are found including pottery, glass, animal bone and human remains.

Parys Underground - Entering a once-flooded copper mine beneath Parys Mountain on Anglesey in North Wales in the hope of retrieving Bronze Age artefacts. However, their exploration of the tunnels is plagued by difficulties, and they must decide whether the dangers involved outweigh the importance of the information they hope to gather.

Parys Mountain - Excavating archaeological sites all over Britain whose locations make them difficult to dig.

The Tintagel Connection - Visiting a Roman site at Tintagel, Cornwall, which is thought to have been a base of operations for traders. Their mission is to recover valuable evidence of imported wares and shipping but the environment and weather present many hazards. Abseiling, climbing and diving skills are needed to access the site - which must be investigated thoroughly before the whole cliff edge slips into the sea.

Bay of Bones - Visiting Longoar Bay in Pembrokeshire to excavate three mysterious stone coffins which have been exposed by erosion. Inaccessible from the ground, the burials can only be reached if the crack archaeologists abseil down the crumbling cliffs.

Shetland Fortress - Traveling to Shetland to conduct the first-ever archaeological investigation into a mysterious group of stones on a promontory known as Burgi Geos that was, according to local folklore, an Iron Age fortress. However, their first challenge is to get to the site - they face a 900-mile drive followed by a four-hour walk through Europe's wettest bog before starting the search for evidence.

Death in Slaughter Stream - Visiting the Forest of Dean to explore the Slaughter Stream, a labyrinth of caves beneath the woodland where they hope to find evidence of ancient human habitation. The archaeologists must first complete a tricky two-hour journey just to access the site and, once there, it is soon clear that extreme exhaustion and low temperatures are going to be their biggest obstacles. Last in series.