Human footprints found in White Sands National Park, New Mexico, were associated with astonishingly ancient age dates in 2021. New research published in the October 5, 2023 issue of Science reports on two independent age dating techniques that corroborate the third technique. The data show that the footprints are between 23,000 and 21,000 years old. This will require fundamental changes in rewriting our history.
Celebrations of the Day of the Dead, or Día de los Muertos, involve traditions to remember and honor deceased family members and friends. In this post we examine a few customs around death, beginning with the mummification practices of ancient Andeans and ending with a street parade in Mexico City, inspired by the death-defying feats of James Bond.
Five great earthquakes of M9 or larger have been recorded in the past century and each was followed by a major tsunami, along with vast devastation and many deaths. These events have provided information to help mitigate the effects of future great earthquakes - including what to keep in the back of your mind if you experience strong earthquake shaking in coastal areas worldwide.
The demand for lithium is increasing dramatically – and sources of this metal are being sought from the high elevations of the Andes Mountains to the lowlands of Australia. Lithium is widely distributed on our planet, but since concentrations of this metal are typically quite low, relatively few ores that are economical to mine have been found to date. There are currently three major sources.
Geologists love to have a bird’s eye view of landscapes. They are helpful for all types of research - tracing active faults and identifying copper ore deposits among them. In this post there are two stories about geology fieldwork - one about earthquakes in Egypt and the other about copper in Chile, tied together by arid landscapes and helicopters.
Geysers, with hot water and steam welling up from deep underground, are mysterious clues to what lies beneath. Yellowstone National Park includes about half of all geysers found on Earth. The Andes Mountains contain a major geyser field, named El Tatio, in northern Chile......I recently dug around for more information about geysers – and I found some that was new news to me and, I think, quite interesting.
When I hiked to Machu Picchu along trails built by the Incas in the Andes Mountains, I was traveling on what was once part of the largest monumental system ever built in the ancient world [...]
Gold and silver were revered by the Incas and their ancestors - and copper was also widely used, but not as highly regarded. An Inca myth gives insight into the cultural significance of these metals. [...]
Gold and silver metals provided an essential symbolic link between the Incas and the cosmos. Gold was associated with the Sun in the Inca world, and sometimes known as the “sweat of the sun.” The [...]
The Incas and their ancestors who inhabited the Andes Mountains had many lively and colorful cultural practices – parading the mummies of long-dead rulers through the streets, oracles who spoke in tongues, psychedelic drug use, [...]