Sites 1, 2. A surface scattering of flint debitage in a ploughed field (80 × 100 m; map ref. NIG 192225/635775; OIG 142225/135775). Many of the flakes were water worn and covered with patina. Some of the worked flakes bore traces of the Levallois technique. Although unclear if these sites were in-situ, they may be dated to the Middle Paleolithic period. Scattered lithic material dating to Early Bronze Age I was also recovered from both sites.


Site 21. A small agricultural complex (map ref. NIG 193857/635315; OIG 143857/ 135315) that consisted of a rock-hewn oil press with a stone crushing basin, in-situ (yam; diam. 1.8 m; Fig. 3). Nearby were remains of a structure with a foundation built of large fieldstone blocks (5 × 10 m; Fig. 4). A rock-cut winepress with a treading floor (3 × 3 m; Fig. 5) and a rock-hewn collecting vat (0.8 × 1.2 m) along its north side was recorded. Quarrying marks and cup marks were discerned in the general area. Scattered ceramics, dating to the Byzantine period and a single flint blade from the Early Bronze Age were found.


Site 25. A number of rock-cut agricultural installations or rock quarries at two separate locations (map ref. NIG 194031/635320 and 194185/635230; OIG 144031/ 135320 and 144185/135230) were hidden below thick ground cover, which prevented proper recording of these features.


Site 59. On Kh. Hammada (map ref. NIG 201608/631516; OIG 151608/131516), remains of agricultural terraces built of well-carved and dressed fieldstone blocks in secondary use (average size 0.8 × 1.0 m) were documented, as well as the partial remains of structures that used similar blocks (Figs. 6, 7). Nearby were the remains of a rock-cut burial cave with a stairway leading down a shaft to the arched entrance (0.5 × 0.8 m; Fig. 8). Off the proposed alignment but close-by were additional caves and rock-cut features. Higher up the slope (map ref. NIG 202350/631480; OIG 152350/131480) rock-cut agricultural installations and the badly damaged remains of possible stone structures were discovered. Scattered pottery from the Byzantine period was found.


The rock-cut installations along the southern bank of Nahal Har’el indicate intensive agricultural land use in the Byzantine period. Although badly water worn, scattered flint material suggests a prehistoric and proto-historic activity in the larger region, while the preservation of building remains at Kh. Hammada bodes well for any future excavation.