When Gizmodo last checked in with archaeologist Mark Willis, he was assembling huge 36 GB panoramic photographs of ancient rock art in the wilds of west Texas; now he’s flying drones over ancient pyramids in the Andes.
Normally covered by fog, the landscape—dotted with “earthen mounds and
platform pyramids… near Hacienda Zuleta”—is exceptionally difficult to image from above using
traditional means, Willis explains. Even old stand-bys, such as satellites, are unreliable due to the region’s atmospheric conditions. From a representational point of view, it’s a kind of hidden landscape, resistant to visual capture.
However, as “part of a team of archaeologists who visited the site in August 2013,” Willis adds, “we aimed to change that.”