The Ancient Secrets of Alaska Are Just Now Coming to The Surface
When U.S. military experts were using the Delta River Overlook for an observation point, they uncovered some unusual deposits and called in the anthropologists to investigate. Now, many years later, a team worked on the site and uncovered ancient artifacts of some of the earliest people to live on the North American continent.
The Delta River overlook is a beautiful part of Alaska where the mountains stand in the distance and the river basin spreads before you. The perspective has drawn people here for thousands of years to observe the valley.
In 1978, the view led the U.S. Army to bulldoze the area in order to create an observation point during field training exercises.
The site has the perfect vantage point for hunters to scan the Delta River plains for bison, a large game animal that lived throughout the area during the period between the ice ages.
The site is remote and it takes a half-hour Jeep ride to get to where the road ends west of Fort Greely, followed by a 30-min. hike. There the anthropologists with the University of Alaska Fairbanks excavated all summer long in 2017.
This led to the discovery of archeological artifacts showing people lived on the spot over 13,000 years ago, not long after humans first crossed the land bridge that connected Asia and North America.
The military still uses the area for training. It is reported that there are more than 450 archaeological sites just in the eastern part of the 600,000 acre Donnelly Training Area, consequently more digs are expected in the future.
The Delta River is also an ample source of fish. Evidence shows that early hunters used the area to process game. There is also indication that they lived here year-round. There is much more to learn about these early people.
The Delta River Overlook is a staggeringly beautiful part of Alaska. It's no surprise that this is among the oldest known human-occupied places in North America.
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