As we near the end of the 2017 field season, our thoughts turn to future seasons and where we might want to dig next. One way to answer that question is to consult the results of the walking survey and/or the GPR survey conducted in 2016. Another way to answer that question is to dig a test trench. This is a probe, usually measuring 2 x 2 meters, in which excavators dig down, recording as they go, to see what they find. If excavation produces "clean" pottery readings, meaning all Persian or all Iron Age for instance, or architecture, chances are, it's a promising area for excavation.
In the pictures above, a team headed by Josh Walton investigates the summit of the tel in a hunt for Iron Age deposits.