Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The High Point on Two-Rod Rd - Estabrook Woods, Concord MA

I came across some very well buried rock piles in northeastern Estabrook Woods, like this (see also here for videos):Some were completely invisible, like the one in the center of the following picture, and I cleaned off a few (like the one to the upper left):Only one pile stood out enough that you might notice it in passing:
I decided to be slightly unethical and clean off a few others. There are still plenty that remain buried and it is worthwhile both getting a sense of the site layout as well as making it easier to see that this is a site.

Once cleared, the piles can be seen to be more or less evenly spaced and in lines - characteristics of what I call marker piles. Here, the lower version of the picture shows where the piles are circled in red. Looking northwest:Looking northeast:Referring to the sketch above, this is in a shallow valley between a knoll to the west and a flat plateau to the east. A stone wall crossing the knoll on the western side is "fresh" and looks like most of the walls you see in Estabrook Woods.But there were also two short stretches of older wall, that look as well buried as the rock piles
These are obviously much older. I often see a couple of such short stretches of wall at a marker pile site; they are reasonably characteristic.

Interestingly, the newer wall was built along the side of a "rectangular" structure:This was the only place where the wall had an extra feature like this. Then I went across the valley, up onto the flat area and swept back back and forth, just to be systematic, and was thrilled to see this larger mound:Note the consistent size of the rocks in this pile.

There was another pile, on a boulder, up here in the flat area, and I saw one other off to the side, but that is all I noticed. So here we have quite a combination of anomalies on one part of the woods: an array of rock piles, older walls, a rectangular ruin against the newer wall, and also a very nice larger mound on the flat place to the east of the site. It turns out, looking at my topo maps that this flat place is the highest point - or at least the highest field (cuz I am ignoring a nearby crag)- in this eastern part of Estabrook Woods. The mound would be visible from a long way away. Here is the "MAPNIK" view:
Note that little "peak" symbol is a crag that must be familiar to people who have walked through this part of the woods. Perhaps it is relevant to this site, as its shadow would reach to here. I guess it is worth mentioning there were low rock piles on both sides of the shallow valley, shadows from the west (the knoll? the crag?) would touch piles on the eastern side of the valley and shadows from the east (the mound?) would touch places on the western side. Anyway...

Look how even the larger mound is nearly invisible from a few feet away: