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Hillside Dump - How to Proceed

DeepSeaDan

Well-Known Member
Jun 9, 2013
74
18
Greetings,

Contemplating my very first earthen dig ( always been an underwater hunter ), at a hillside dump location. It appears the area was used for dumping for many years, as my oldest initial find is a broken Ayers Sarsaparilla bottle, which was 3/4's of the way down the cliff face ( the cliff being an average height of about 20' ), on the surface. Nearby was the remnant of a ceramic ginger beer. A lot of newer items scattered about the surface of the hillside as well.

Question: How best to begin the dig? At the base of the cliff? Should I trench lateral to the cliff, dig upward in rows? How about digging tools - any "must have" or "great to have" tools for such a dig?

Thanks in advance!

DSD
Hillside Finds.JPG
 

yacorie

Well-Known Member
Dec 10, 2018
320
28
CT
So a 20 foot cliff and a 20 foot hillside are different. Just hard to know how hard it is to traverse up and down.

generally the oldest stuff is at the bottom of a hillside dump because as they used it, the stuff would pile up over the years.

mid this was me, I’d start at the bottom and work my way back and forth along the bottom. When I found a pocket I would dig it.

if possible, I would dig the bottom across the entire length of the dump. Then I would move up a bit more and continue. Some of it you will have to decide based on the topography and how it looks and behaves as you dig.

1. Be safe
2. Have fun
3. Be safe

some guys trench in and get in tunnels and holes. I don’t do that. I’d bench in if I have to go deeper.

post pics of your finds
 

DeepSeaDan

Well-Known Member
Jun 9, 2013
74
18
So a 20 foot cliff and a 20 foot hillside are different. Just hard to know how hard it is to traverse up and down.

generally the oldest stuff is at the bottom of a hillside dump because as they used it, the stuff would pile up over the years.

mid this was me, I’d start at the bottom and work my way back and forth along the bottom. When I found a pocket I would dig it.

if possible, I would dig the bottom across the entire length of the dump. Then I would move up a bit more and continue. Some of it you will have to decide based on the topography and how it looks and behaves as you dig.

1. Be safe
2. Have fun
3. Be safe

some guys trench in and get in tunnels and holes. I don’t do that. I’d bench in if I have to go deeper.

post pics of your finds
Ok, let's stick with calling it a Hillside, as the slope is about 45 degrees. I like the idea of trenching at the foot of the hill, as it makes sense that the older material would make it's way to the bottom. There is some concrete to deal with, so I expect a bit of slugging along the way.

Thanks, Yacorie!

DSD
 

yacorie

Well-Known Member
Dec 10, 2018
320
28
CT
Certainly - where can I get a probe?
You can buy them or there are posts here on how to make one with a spring steel rod.

mid you already know it’s a dump with older stuff - I’d save probing until later when you’re trying to find additional pockets or see if you need to go deeper etc
 

ROBBYBOBBY64

Well-Known Member
Jan 11, 2020
1,136
113
New Jersey
Tools- shovel, small garden shovel, cultivater. Thats my choice. I have seen people using all kinds of things like mason trowels to garden hoes. Basically it is what ever works for you. Oh yeah i almost forgot the cutters for roots.
 

DeepSeaDan

Well-Known Member
Jun 9, 2013
74
18
You can always watch videos online. See how others do it and the tools and way they approch a dig. Use caution be safe most importantly have fun!
Thanks for the help, RB64!

As soon as the rain stops, I'll give it a go, and hopefully have somethings to show!

DSD
 

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