Melting ice in Norway revealed a long-lost Viking-era mountain pass full of archaeological finds.
The pass, which was slowly freed from ice due to rising global temperatures, is located on the Lendbrin ice section in the central mountains of Norway, northwest of Oslo.
The pass dates back to about 1800 years before the Nordic Iron Age and has been used for centuries by farmers and travelers making their way through the mountains.
“It probably served as an artery for long journeys as well as for local trips between permanent farms in the valleys to summer farms higher in the mountains where livestock grazed for part of the year,” said study co-author and archaeologist James Barrett of the University of Cambridge.
Due to the large number of people who made their way through the pass, this area was dotted with hundreds of artifacts that fell and later covered with ice for a long period of time.
These items, which date from the Roman Iron Age to the medieval period, include snowshoes, a woolen tunic, a knife, wooden skis, arrows, horseshoes, horse bones and a broken cane decorated with an inscription that says “belongs to Joar.”
In total, more than 800 items have been recovered from the pass at the moment.
Despite its popularity, however, the pass has seen less and less use since around the 14th century, possibly due to the Black Death – a pandemic that killed millions of people around the world.
“Pandemics have caused great damage to the local population,” said archaeologist Lars Pilo, co-director of the Secrets of Glacial Archeology program. -And when the area eventually recovered, everything changed. The Landbrin Pass has become obsolete and has been forgotten. ”