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Hatun Machay Archaeological Project

Location: Hatun Machay , Ancash, Peru

September 19, 2014 to October 23, 2014

Session dates: 
Session One: 19 September - 23 October

Application Deadline: 
Saturday, August 30, 2014

Deadline Type: 
Exact date

Program Type

Field school

RPA certified



Instituto de Estudios Arqueológicos Andinos

Project Director:

Jhon Cruz

Project Description

Recent studies of early human populations that inhabited the Andes have focused on a review of the chronology of the inhabited sites, suggesting human presence as early as the Late Pleistocene and the Early Holocene.

These studies have also recognized new models of subsistence strategies, with specialized exploitation of the environment, showing different patterns of mobility . Reconstructions of the environmental conditions of the late Pleistocene to Early and Middle Holocene show that climatic change would have had a significant impact upon such mobility and adaptability. Understanding the nature of this adaptability to the local environmental conditions is crucial to advance our understanding of the nature of human society in these early periods.

These studies reveal that societies inhabiting different locations developed different behaviors and organizational solutions. Each group developed subsistence strategies and patterns of mobility to particular available resources from the surrounding ecological niches. Consequently, these early populations show organizational and subsistence variability according to ecological variation.

Within this framework of exploring such differences in adaptation, this research project aims to address the following question: what kind of variability in the subsistence and mobility patterns characterizes the hunter-gatherer groups that inhabited the puna highlands of Ancash during the Holocene?

In order to address this, the research project aims to identify and analyze evidence of long-term occupations at the site of Hatun Machay. The goals of this research project include identifying and analyzing the evidence of long-term occupations and subsistence strategies adapted to natural environmental of high altitude puna

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 4 weeks

Minimum age: 

Experience required: 

Room and Board Arrangements

Tents will be provided as sleeping quarters, however you may bring your own if you wish. We will be camping next to a lodge, about ten minutes walk from the site. The lodge has a kitchen and common room for us to use, and we will set up a temporary lab in there as well. The lodge is also used by people visiting Hatun Machay for rock climbing, so you will have the opportunity to meet other travellers and locals during the field school. We will share domestic duties such as cooking and cleaning. Monday to Saturday we will follow a schedule of field and lab work, and  lectures. Sunday is our day of rest. All food, accommodation and field equipment is provided for the duration of the field school. Flights, transport to Huaraz, personal gear etc. are not included.

US$1,800 per session

Academic Credit

Number of credits offered: none


Contact Information
Steph Van Berkel or Jhon Cruz