Today we officially finished our first unit! Jason and I went back and completed our half of the paperwork and drew the profile, which is basically a picture of the wall showing the different layers of earth. It felt great to finally have that done, and to be able to give our full attention to the new unit, which certainly needs it. It is standing almost completely alone between several fully excavated units, and as a result the walls are crumbling. It did not help that today was unusually dry, and consequently so was the dirt. Excavation became even more complicated when we realized that the center of it started sinking when we were scraping it with our trowels. This might be because of insect or animal activity, but in any case it is causing some serious problems.
We finished scraping off the top layer and defined the edge of the Schuster trench, which is cutting through about half of the unit at this point. We’ll have to excavate that first and then take down the undisturbed half, just as we did in the first unit. We started excavating the trench today, but did not get as far as I would have liked. My goal is to get through it as quickly as we can so that we can start on the undisturbed part before it collapses. I’m really concerned about the stability of this unit, but hopefully the excavation will go smoothly. The weather is supposed to be more humid next week as well, so perhaps it will be less brittle with a little moisture in the air!
(Our first unit, completely excavated!)
(Our second unit, partially excavated at the end of today.)