Melting Alpine glaciers yield archaeologic troves, but clock ticking | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Melting Alpine glaciers yield archaeologic troves, but clock ticking

The group climbed the steep mountainside, clambering across an Alpine glacier, before finding what they were seeking: a crystal vein filled with the precious rocks needed to sculpt their tools.

That is what archaeologists have deduced after the discovery of traces of an ancient hunt for crystals by hunters and gatherers in the Mesolithic era, some 9,500 years ago.

It is one of many valuable archaeological sites to emerge in recent decades from rapidly melting glacier ice, sparking a brand-new field of research: glacier archaeology.

Amid surging temperatures, glaciologists predict that 95 percent of the some 4,000 glaciers dotted throughout the Alps could disappear by the end of this century.

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