Overhead a sound like a hive of bees hums as a quadcopter drone takes photos and videos of every possible angle of Khor Kharfot, the candidate for Nephi’s Bountiful that hardly anyone questions. Below in the vast, blue ocean, scuba divers explore underwater for anything left from 2600 years ago.
The month of February archaeologists have descended in this remote, almost inaccessible place to sift the dirt and find its secrets, but this week is the height of activity. Twenty-three of us are here, representing different specialties and skills, to probe this place, asking questions whose answers may lie buried here.
We have two major hypotheses: 1) that Khor Kharfot is Nephi’s Bountiful and 2) that there is an Israelite sanctuary here built with the sacred geometry found in Solomon’s Temple. That geometry is like a signature upon the place and will become even more clear with the work we do over time. Archaeology is a patient process, but new technology is opening doors never before dreamed possible.
The multi-disciplinary group who have arrived here, tools in hand, are particularly geared to search for these answers, but they won’t come easily. Taking test samples, hauling them back to labs for chemical analyses, comparing this with mounds of study done elsewhere will all be required to move these ideas forward in a scientifically sound way.
Those who have come before to study Khor Kharfot have camped in the brutal heat, while the biting midgelys ate us alive, but this time, in a burst of sanity, we are staying in Dhalkut, a small fishing village to the west that is just three miles from the border of Yemen.
Oman is a nation of tolerance and friendliness, a pristine, perfect image of Arabia like you might find at the Epcot Center. Yemen is the heart of al Qaeda, so we are glad to be on this side of the border though word travels that we are here.
Every morning we take on the ocean in fishing boats to travel the six miles in thirty minutes to Khor Kharfot, an inlet that has been uninhabited for a very long time. To land, our fishing boats are rammed at high speed t-boning the shore, overcoming the waves, and we wade to land. Our day in the heat and searing sun has begun.
Read the full article at Meridian Magazine.
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