Hato - Tanki Monpoos

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On Thursday, May 30th, 2013 a subgroup of the archaeology sleuths gathered at the parking lot of the Coast Guard near Hato Airport. For all of them except me it was a second and for one even a third visit to this area.
From the parking lot we crossed the road and entered the area of the paintball club. Our goal for today was a path between the border of Gato and Souax that could be used to patrol the borders without crossing into either area. We wanted to know if this path is still accessible. Along the road to that path we would look out for any signals that would indicate the presence of prehistoric Indians in the area.

Monpoos 20130530 026 smallIn the area of the paintball club several car wrecks can be found. either dumped or placed here on purpose to serve as a hiding place during the paintball war. Also a former tannery is in this area. Large concrete containers to soak and prepare the leather are still visible. A large press is lying on the floor of the building. The factory is abandoned quite some time ago.

A bit further along the route we passed one of the crushers in this area and soon after we reached Tanki Monpoos. A nice pond which, according to the others, contained less water than during the last visit. Not so strange because we are in the dry season. A large fern is growing next to the pond. Around the pond is a nice forest of large trees. A unexpectedly nice place in this area.

From there we walked as close as possible to the cliff because that is where we hoped to find indian markings or artifacts. As close as possible was seriously hindered by large dumps of garbage containing everything from a car wreck, washing machines to garbage bags. Obviously coming from the village of Souax on top of the cliff. There are a lot of interesting caves and niches but most of them are blocked by this garbage dumps. We were able to enter some of these niches by climbing over the garbage which was not always without danger because the dump is instable. We didn't find anything that indicated the presence of Indians. It looked as if some digging was done in the floor of these caves. The floor is where we normally find shells or Indian tools but because of the digging everything would have disappeared. Surprisingly we found a lot of golf balls in the area. Obviously not from the Indians, but who would play golf in this area and not collect his/hers used golf balls?

We also found a lot of hermit crabs. These crabs are carrying around a housing that protects them and especially the vulnerable backside of the crab. One of the hermit crabs that we found was still in its learning phase because it used a piece of PVC tube as a housing. Obviously not the best housing for a hermit crab because we could clearly see and touch his backside. 

Because of the time and the slow progress we made through the dense vegetation we decided to abandon our goal to reach the patrol path. To get to the dirt road we tried to follow an old path that was marked on the Werbata map. The only indication of this path was a lot of moss on the ground. The vegetation had taken over the path. Luckily there were a number of open areas along the path so that we could stand upright for a change. After quite a while we reached the road to the Hato plain. Folowing that dirt road we made it back to the cars in about 30 minutes.

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