A rare copper arrowhead almost 900 years old has been discovered on a remote Canadian mountain, archaeologists have said.
The arrowhead, found in Canada's Yukon Territory, is present at the tip of an antler arrow which is preserved perfectly. "It was found near the top of a snow-capped mountain in South West Yukon," Yukon Archaeologist Greg Hare was quoted as saying by Fox News.
"It was an incredible discovery. We really didn't intend to be on that [ice] patch on that day," he added.
The arrow was spotted by Senior Project Archaeologist Christian Thomas when he was traveling along with other archaeologists on a helicopter along with a documentary film crew.
They first spotted a caribou on the ice patch where they planned to land and ended up making the discovery. "While we were there, we thought we would look around and within five minutes, Chris found this massive barbed antler point sticking out of the ice patch," Hare said.
The arrow is around 11-inches long and includes a barbed antler and a copper-end blade.
The weapon was sent to the University of Ottawa's A.E. Lalonde laboratory for radiocarbon dating and was found to be 850-years-old.
"This is one of the earliest examples that we have bow and arrow technology in the Yukon and it's the earliest known example of copper use in Yukon," Hare said.
So far, around 250 objects have been discovered from the melting ice patches in Southern Yukon. The weapons comprise bows and arrows or throwing darts.
"The advantage of the ice patch project is that most of what we're finding has an organic element that lets us radiocarbon date it," Hare said.
"We will never find things like this in a lowland setting – [the arrow] is only preserved because it has been locked in the ice for basically 1,000 years," he added.