We were surveying a dairy ranch in north west Tucson for a purported archaeological site.
The ranch was still a very active dairy ranch-full of cows.
What in the world will we find here? Could we find anything here after years of severe and heavy cattle trampling, I wondered?
The rancher was right there with us moving cows from corral to corral as we searched the ground.
At one point I had the unpleasant task of holding the cumbersome stadia rod that is greater than six feet tall, unwieldly and heavy.
We were in a corral from which the rancher had just moved about 20 cows out to the next corral.
Here I was with that dang rod trying to hold it as still as I could in the light breeze so Michel could get a bearing on it for mapping purposes.
The clouds were hither and skitter that day. One cloud scudded by and suddenly I caught a quick sparkle of—
“Yikes” I yelled dropping the rod and ran to the spot of the sparkle. Michel came running too.
There it was with all its sparkle, a whole projectile point (arrowhead), close to 1½ inches long.
A quartz crystal one to boot!
It is very unusual to find quartz crystal lithics, as pre-historic peoples seemed to prefer other materials for their tools.
And good heavens! It was an archaic point (8,000 BC-1 AD) in perfect condition.