Scientists have found many things buried and preserved in ice. Some of these things are stranger than others. And some of them are so bizarre, they truly baffle the mind. While many of these findings are typically woolly creatures, primed and ready for the arctic environment, others are inexplicably weird. Here are a few of the more choice, mysterious, and enthralling findings scientists discovered in the icy worlds of the deep north and south. Prepare yourself.
Of the other odd things scientists have found in ice is crashed technology. While not ancient, this tech is definitely a surprise. Long presumed lost, sometimes these things have a way of being found again. In 1952, for instance, a military plane bound for Anchorage, Alaska came up a little bit short, crashing into a nearby glacier.
Sometimes the things scientists find in ice aren’t even dead. Sometimes these unholy findings aren’t the result of frozen mishaps, but instead normal changes to the environment. Certain alligators, for instance, can survive in ice for the duration of an entirely frigid and perilous winter.
Sometimes the animals scientists find in ice are more contemporary. And this makes sense—modern animals can freeze in ice just like those that existed back in the day. And this is the case with certain foxes. Their cuteness, in other words, was not enough to prevent them from getting frozen solid in the ice cold waters of the Arctic conditions in which they were found.
As glaciers advance, they essentially crush everything in their way. But, also, as they move they pick up rocks and debris. Scientists call this sediment moraine. This moraine can act as a cushion for some of the stuff that the glacier would otherwise crush. And this is the case for certain old forests.
In Chile, some things were found in the ice that were a little more disconcerting than most. These things were Inca sacrifices. It was ritual, for instance, for the Inca to sacrifice children and other unfortunate souls to the highest peaks of the Andes Mountains. Such traditions aren’t uncommon to the societies of our past.
Like other societies of the time, the Inca were fond of human sacrifice. During rituals that paid homage to the Sun God Inti, they thought they had to go to extremes—in this case, extreme heights and cold—to appease. They didn’t test their hypotheses by not sacrificing the children to see what happens.