Glacial archaeologists find arrow in melting ice

The arrow was found between loose stones, likely transported from further up the slope as the snow melted and the water trickled down the mountain. 

 Arrowhead found in Norwegian mountains after a glacier melted. (photo credit: Glacier Archaeology Program)
Arrowhead found in Norwegian mountains after a glacier melted.
(photo credit: Glacier Archaeology Program)

Glacial archeologists in Norway found their first arrow of the season, which is approximately 1500 years old, according to the Glacier Archeology Program of the Innlandet County Municipality. 

The archeological site, mountainous Oppland in southeastern Norway, generally yields four types of artifacts according to their website: arrows, bows, spears and scaring sticks. Scaring sticks, meter-long wooden sticks with objects attached that moved in the wind, were used to scare reindeer toward paths easily accessible to hunters. 

"The fletching is gone and the sinew and tar is not perfectly preserved. Still, the preservation is pretty awesome."

 Glacier Archeology Program of the Innlandet County Municipality on Facebook

Archeologists in the past have also found preserved prehistoric skis, a Bronze age shoe and a lost Viking settlement containing sleds, dead animals, clothing and household items at these glacial mountains. 

The story behind this arrow

The oldest arrows found at the site date back to the Early Neolithic period, 4000-3700 BCE. This latest arrow was found between loose stones, likely transported from further up the slope as the snow melted and the water trickled down the mountain.

 Arrowhead found in Norwegian mountains after a glacier melted. (credit: Glacier Archaeology Program) Arrowhead found in Norwegian mountains after a glacier melted. (credit: Glacier Archaeology Program)

Per the organization's Facebook page, the arrow had likely been exposed a number of times in the past. "The fletching is gone and the sinew and tar is not perfectly preserved. Still," the post continues enthusiastically, "the preservation is pretty awesome."