Is there an Israelite Sanctuary at Nephi’s Bountiful?

Is there an Israelite Sanctuary at Nephi’s Bountiful?

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Image via Meridian Magazine

On my initial visit in April of 2014, I was intrigued by Kharfot’s loneliness, its diverse environment and its complexity of archaeological remnants. But that was all—I was simply intrigued—at first.

That “intrigued” attitude drastically changed late in the afternoon of May 2, 2014, our final day at Kharfot. I became more than intrigued with the place when Warren Aston, the expedition leader, handed me a scaled drawing of a peculiar site in that locality. I had just returned to camp from my final recon and coming out of the scorching 105 plus degree heat, dumped my field gear into the shade of a canopy suspended from a tree by ropes. I settled into a vacant seat completely wiped out. I felt every bit and more of my longevity. I was going home the next morning and all I wanted to do was rest and eventually, with effort, participate in the on-going group discussion.

Among those welcoming me into the shade were Maurine and Scot Proctor, Warren Aston and Mark Hamilton, all of whom were members of the original Khor Kharfot Foundation board overseeing that particular expedition. I settled in wanting only to scarf up the hot MREs that would be prepared later over the campfire and finally crawl into my netted hammock for the night. I wasn’t even convinced that I had the energy needed to venture to the nearby spring and wash away the sweat and dust.

Warren—the original explorer and discoverer of Khor Kharfot as the potential Arabian land of Bountiful site—interrupted my guzzling down the remaining hot water in my canteens. Without fanfare he handed me a pencil drawing of the architectural footprint of a particular site at Khorfot. I had heard about this drawing and had pestered him to see it. Now, with my final recon finished on the final afternoon of the expedition, he was finally bringing it out of his briefcase.

Warren’s drawing, [see the illustration provided below] was of a location in Kharfot situated high on the cliffs overlooking the Arabian Sea. The sketch was scaled in feet and had been done some years before by Warren’s son, Chad Aston, during one of their many visits to Wadi Sayq and Khor Kharfot. I immediately recognized the location. I had trekked across it several times during my short sojourn in Wadi Sayq; however, during those brief moments on-site I had not recognized the place for what it was.

Read the full article at Meridian Magazine.


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