This summer I spent a month in Belgium on an archaeological dig site. The purpose of the trip was to learn basic principles of archaeology while helping to uncover more of the ruins at the Walhain castle, where some of the oldest features of the structure date back to around 1200. While working on this site there was a focus on proper technique for using various tools to slowly uncover artifacts and new structures. There was careful attention to labeling artifacts and learning about subtle shifts in the soil types. We were also taught the proper way to document the site with drawings, soil descriptions, and various other notations which will be kept as part of the official records for the site.
While this was a lot of work there was also plenty of opportunity to travel and explore. One of the best parts of the experience was that I did not constantly feel like a tourist despite being in a different country and not knowing the language. I would highly recommend this experience to anyone who has any interest in Archaeology.
If anyone is interested in applying for next summer’s trip they can find more information here: https://castlewalhain.wordpress.com/2015/09/09/now-recruiting-walhain-st-paul-project-2016-summer-archaeology-field-school-in-belgium/