Survey of the Terrain
In the past few years it became clear that we are not dealing with a battle limited to a small space in Kalkriese, but one that covered an extensive terrain in which Roman troops were attacked repeatedly on their march. This terrain spans more than 30 square kilometers, and it is roughly located between the rivers Hase and Hunte and between Kalkrieser Berg and Großes Moor (Big Moor). This information has mainly been derived from surveys of the terrain conducted by employees of the Kalkriese Research Project since 1987. These surveys were inspired by findings of the late Tony Clunn, who passed away in the summer of 2014.
While in the early stages of the surveys two persons scanned the fields with metal detectors (always with the approval of the respective land owners and tenants), geophysical technician Klaus Fehrs alone has been in charge of the surveys for many years now. Given the immense size of the area to be surveyed, this is not only the task of a lifetime for a single person, but a systematic survey also means that each square meter must be searched carefully, detected finds must be unearthed, measured and identified. Only then the artifacts are entered in maps and databases, the data are evaluated and then submitted to the respective office for the protection of ancient monuments. Nowadays many fields are agriculturally used during all seasons of the year – a fact that severely limits the survey periods. If winters (the best time of the year to survey a terrain) are rainy, snowy or extremely cold, this season can hardly be used to continue working on these tasks.