Welcome to the Proyecto Arqueologico Distrito del Caceres Ancash (PADCA) home page. PADCA was started by doctoral candidate Kimberly Munro, an Andean archaeologist currently working on her dissertation at Louisiana State University. The purpose of PADCA is to investigate and document the archaeological remains located within the Cáceres district in the Nepeña Valley, in central Peru.
In the summer of 2013, PADCA spent several weeks locating, recording, and re-investigating archaeological sites in the upper Nepeña in order to focus on a specific site for further dissertation research. The sites of interest showed elements of coastal-highland interactions during the Early Horizon (900-1 BCE) and Early Intermediate Period (EIP) (AD 1-800) within the valley. Nepeña is located in the Department of Ancash, Peru. The 2013 field season investigated sites in the yunga (1,000- 2,300 m) and quechua (2,300– 3,500 m) ecological life zones. The upper Nepeña Valley, specifically the Jimbe branch of the Nepeña River is a geographical zone which is currently only a footnote of interest for Andean researchers. With the exception of archaeologist, Hugo Ikehara’s survey, past surveys were preliminary and focused mainly on the middle and lower valley. PADCA’s research will help to fill in the gaps in inter-regional interactions for the Nepeña Valley system.
The Cáceres District encompasses several river tributaries of the Nepeña Valley. These tributaries include the Lampanin, Colcap, and Cosma branches, whose headwaters are located in the Cordillera Negra mountains and flow down to converge into the Nepeña River just west of the town of Jimbe. During the 2013 preliminary survey, a large ceremonial complex was documented at the headwaters of the Cosma River tributary. This site, now referred to as “The Cosma Archaeological Complex” is currently the focus of PADCA’s investigations. The Cosma Complex, located within, and around the communities of Cosma and Collique is made up of several elements, including three ceremonial multi-tiered temple mounds, domestic areas, prehistoric terraces, a large hilltop fortress, and an Inca component composed of large carved stoneworks.
In 2014 & 2015, the Karecoto and Acshipucoto mounds within the basin were mapped and excavated, showing elements of Late Preceramic (3000-1800 BCE) through Early Horizon (900-200 BCE) occupation and use of the mound platforms. Excavations are ongoing for the 2016 season and are focusing on the Preceramic elements of the site, as well as testing the Kunka mound on the southern ridge-line.
In addition to the current excavations, PADCA is also finishing up the initial survey started in 2013. We are currently focusing on the Lampanin and Colcap branches, as well as visiting sites further into the Cordillera Negra mountains located within the Cosma basin.
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