Huari-Ancash Bio-Archaeological Research Project
!!20 Years!! 2004 - 2024
Jason Nesbitt PhD
Graduated at Yale University in 2012 and is our specialist in ceramic analysis with over 15 years of experience in Andean Archaeology. Dr. Nesbitt has published several articles on formative Period in Peru and is directing Chavín Inland - a collaborative project with Huari-Ancash Bioarchaeological Project since 2013, sharing the facilities in Huari. Currently is Associated Professor at the Department of Anthropology, Tulane University.
You will get a certificate for the number of hours worked in the field and laboratory (100h total). We offer 4 academic credits through our academic partner.
The cost of participation is $2,850 it
1. Instructional costs.
2. Transport Miraflores –Bus Station
3. Bus Tickets: Lima – Huari - Lima.
4. Accommodations and meals in Huari.
5. Excavation materials.
6. Transportation to excavations.
7. Entrance fees and transportation to
Chavin de Huantar and its Museum.
Does not include:
1. Airfare to Peru.
2. Meals and stay in Lima.
3. Personal expenses.
4. Alcoholic beverages.
5. Health insurance (required).
6. Meals in Huari on Sundays.
7. Meals in Chavín de Huántar.
Sexual Harassment policy
Season: June 9th - July 1st, 2024
BA in Archaeology from Universite de Paris, joined the project in 2012 and has been to each and every survey and excavation mission since then, Pablo assists in all parts of the research.
Bach. Margarita Brikyte
BA in Anthropology from CSULB. She joined the team in 2008 and oversees communication with participants during the application process.
The Field School is focused on three aspects of research, and we follow different techniques in the field and lab, they are organized in such a way that students get familiarized with archaeological techniques.
Week 01. After you arrive, we will lecture on archaeology techniques, the historical background of the region, and the result of the previous season. Then, we survey 04 nearby archaeological sites (so you get acclimatized to the altitude). There, students will learn how to set up a grid, oriented large transect for survey, and GPS – Google Earth synchronization. It is followed by techniques for recording and describing archaeological sites. Since all the sites have different layouts, students identify differences in architectural terms. Recording information includes photogrammetry, using a drone and camera. Besides, surface recollection, and its proper labeling. We simulate situations commonly present in CRM (Cultural Resource Management). CRM is the primary source of work opportunities; we want students to be ready for these jobs.
Week 02. This week is dedicated to excavation, full in camp (Monday to Saturday, 8 to 4 PM). We excavate a complex of tombs. During the excavation students get familiar with archaeological context description, identification of stratigraphy, recording, and classification of findings. This part includes drawing/mapping of funeral structures/caves, techniques of bone recovery, and identification of the taphonomy process in human remains. A physical anthropologist is present during the excavations, and lectures about human remains are done in situ as we find the remains. It is the best way to learn, since findings on terrain are different than those in the textbooks.
Week 03. It is dedicated to lab; analysis of human remains and lectures in forensic anthropology with real samples performed. The bone analysis’s goal is to obtain biological data from the remains recovered by students themselves during the current season or from previous excavations. Additionally, workshops in ceramic analysis, 3D scans of entire objects, photography, and labeling of material are performed.
During three weeks students will explore from the beginning and end the archaeological research, providing experience and skills for job (CRM) and academy (graduated studies).
Director of the program. Licentiate from Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima, PhD at Tulane University in 2021. Started Huari-Ancash Bioarchaeological Project in 1997 and is organizing the field school part of it since 2005. Has diverse publications on Archaeology of Ancash, including several edited volumes, book chapters, andpeer-reviewedarticles. Presently a teacher assistant in the Department of Anthropology, Tulane University.
You will receive an email within 10 days after the application about your acceptance to the program
Bach. Carlos Escobar Silva
BA from Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos 2003. Carlos is one of the project starting members from 2005. He is a specialist in archaeological record and excavations. Carlos has participated in numerous archaeological projects in Peru (Research and CRM). He will be in charge of everything related to the archaeology part in the field.
The time of this field school is well organized so that participants engage in different aspects of the project: survey, excavation, and lab. The goal is providing the basis of archaeological work and give an overview about what means to become an archaeologist. We lecture a lot during the first few days and cover a lot of ground even for those who have no previous experience in excavation (especially working with human remains). This makes our field school a bit different perhaps; students do get a rich theoretical background before the excavations start as well as during the excavations so that theory and practice blends into a whole thus making sure the participants get connected with the work and the area and have a wholesome understanding of the research.
It is important to keep in mind and, hopefully, to look forward to, that that the project takes place in a very rural area. You may travel to Peru and never really get the taste of life in deep provincial areas which truly are a world to themselves. Huari is such a town. It is surrounded by mountains, it is deep in the mountains. Life is simple, and time passes by very differently here. There still a lot of authenticities and lots of sightseeing. People are friendly, and they love visitors, and we on our end expect the participants to respect what is new and VERY foreign to them.
The field conditions are different than those you experience in your home or university. Archaeology in the Andes is a hard, cold, physically exhausting, dirty, and demanding activity. When deciding to work in this part of the world it is important to understand that learning to deal with very different circumstances at hand is a crucial part of participation in the project and to make the best of a given situation with the tools available. This is not a summer vacation although we promise you will have a great time. And on our end, we expect all members of our project to be patient, upbeat, flexible and prepared.
We hope you are up for the challenge to learn and discover and look forward to meeting you this coming summer.
Participants will camp on the site during excavation and on the weekends they will live in the project house in Huari. The house is equipped with a lab, running water, hot showers, electricity, flush toilets, small garden, full kitchen, and lending library; students sleep in bunk beds in doubles, triples, or quads. The project will provide you with a mattress and sheet, but you must bring your sleeping bags.
When camping in the field, the project will provide tents (2-4 persons) and mattresses; if you want to bring your own tent you are welcome to do so. There are many spaces to place the tent, we will have access to running water, and a latrine but no electricity. The camp has, a very basic house mainly for cooking and eating that is located about 100 meters from the excavations. The excavation site is located at about 15 minutes driving distance and 25 minutes hiking. It has a wonderful view of the valley and the mountains around, at night is possible to do bonfires.
Meals: All meals will be grouped, and we will provide plenty of nutritious but basic food in the tradition of local cuisine. While in the house or camping, there will be 3 meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner). Peruvian highland cuisine is heavily based on rice, corn, potatoes, legumes and animal protein such as eggs, beef, and chicken. If you are a vegetarian or have some allergies, you must inform us ahead of time so that the right kind of food is prepared. No group meals served on Saturdays (diner) and Sundays (day off), however, you can have breakfast in the house or cook if you want.
Lic. Jordi Benites Segura
B.A Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos. LIma. Jordi joined our team in 2018. Field archaeologist, has participated in numerous archaeological projects in Peru (Research and CRM).
Lic. John Cruz Quiñones
B.A Universidad Santiago Antunez de Mayolo. Huaraz. John joined our team in 2011. He is a specialist in archaeological record, excavations and Lithic Analysis. John has participated in numerous archaeological projects in Peru (Research and CRM). He will be in charge of Archaeological Lab.
The hike to the base camp starts at Ampas (3423 m of altitude); we follow a steep path of 0.43 miles until we arrive; the base camp is located at 3664 m of altitude. This looks easy. However, the altitude makes it hard.
We use donkeys to carry the backpacks up to the base camp. However, most likely, you will need to carry it down when returning to Huari.
Breakfast is from 7 to 8 PM. Lunch from 12 to 2 PM and dinner 5-6 PM.
The excavation is located 0.2 miles from the camp base at 3610 m of altitude.
How to apply
Life in the Field
Lic. Oscar Loyola Azáldegui
Licentiate from Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru, Lima (2013). Oscar is a Forensic Anthropologist and a member of EPAF (Equipo Peruano de Arqueologia Forense) who participates in projects around the globe, from Nepal to Africa. Oscar is our Physical Anthropologist for the field; he joined the project in 2012.
Send a $250 deposit within 10 days after you are notified of your acceptance.
The remaining amount should be pay 4 weeks before the project starts.
Eden Washburn PhD.
Graduated at University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC) in 2020. Eden is a Physical Anthropologist, a specialist in Isotopes and Chemical analysis, joined the project in 2016. She has performed Isotopes Analysis (Carbon 13, Nitrogen 15 and Strontium 86/87) on human remains from different parts of the valley. Also, she has built the baseline of strontium ratios in the region of Ancash and in collaboration with Dr. Lars Fehren-Schmitz (UCSC) are doing the aDNA analysis of remains recovered by our project.