During October–November 2009, a trial excavation was conducted in bedrock crevices that appeared to be caves, in the region of Horbat Kelah (Permit No. A-5764; map ref. 198310/647645), in the wake of inspecting foundations for industrial buildings in the Modi‘in industrial zone. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and underwritten by the Gav-Yam Hi-Tech Company, Ltd., was directed by M. Haiman (field photography).
Two bedrock crevices that looked like caves were excavated: one crevice had no distinct borders (L100; c. 3 × 5 m, depth c. 1.5 m; Figs. 1, 2) and bore marks on one of its sides, which were caused by a backhoe bucket. The second crevice (L101; 3.5 × 4.4 m, depth 2.1 m; Figs. 3, 4) was found filled with dark organic material that contained shrubbery, toppled inside by a bulldozer; its sides also bore marks of a backhoe bucket.
No antiquities were found in the excavation. The remains of pits in the examined area had been dug by a bulldozer when the ground was checked about one year prior to the current excavation.