Preliminary LiDAR-based Analyses of the La Corona – El Achiotal Corridor


Located in the northwestern Petén, Guatemala, the Maya sites of La Corona and El Achiotal have been investigated since 2008 by a multi-disciplinary US and Guatemalan research project. While a primary goal of this project has been to reconstruct the region’s political history, we are now beginning to investigate the management of local resources and general human impact on the landscape. In fact, the area between La Corona and El Achiotal is almost entirely unknown archaeologically, especially regarding settlement that is largely residential and dispersed due to the wetland environment.

In 2016, a LIDAR survey, funded by the Pacunam Foundation and operated by NCALM, was undertaken in nearly 200 km² rectangular zone encompassing both La Corona and El Achiotal. This survey aims to record the full extent of ancient settlement around and between these two sites and cast light on land-use strategies in a region dominated by seasonal and perennial wetlands. In the following paper, we will present the preliminary results and interpretations of the LIDAR dataset focusing both on the methodological advantages of this technology and on the possibilities it creates for analysis and interpretation of ancient landscapes.

Cite this Record

Preliminary LiDAR-based Analyses of the La Corona – El Achiotal Corridor. Marcello Canuto, Tomás Barrientos, Luke Auld-Thomas, David Chatelain. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431296)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 17665