Once again, we are going to search for the Archive of the Second Jewish Temple in the Ein Gedi region. The volunteers will stay in a nearby Kibbutz, and rise every morning before dawn, while the air is still cool, to climb the 400 metres to the cave. It's a fairly tough walk but young Orthodox girls do it in their long dresses and sandals - so it's not mountaineering.
In past seasons we proved that the Mikveh (ritual cleansing pool) at the entrance to the cave, is in fact a Mikveh and not a cistern, as was previously thought. We found evidence of priestly activity - a leather scroll cover and coins dating back to the Bar Kochba rebellion. All these tantalising clues will fade into insignificance if we find the Archive, which Haim Cohen, the expedition leader, believes to be in this place. He has recently completed his Phd at Haifa University.
There is another mysteriously sealed cave which we are going to survey on this expedition.
If you have any Indiana Jones leanings you should volunteer for this exciting dig. Please follow this blog for more news as it unfolds in the days leading up to the new Season. This writer is planning to be there, and I will be posting blogs, pictures and videos live from the site, so please click on the RSS feed if you want to keep up to date.