ArchaeoCafé Podcast – Episode 2-13 – High altitude archaeology: An interview with Ekta Singh

hosted by Otis Crandell

In this episode I talk with Ekta Singh about the history of Spiti Valley in northern India and her archaeological research in the area as well as some of the general aspects of doing archaeological research in the high altitude environment of the Himalayas.

Listen to this episode online:



Some useful terminology and links

Spiti Valley
A cold desert mountain valley located high in the Himalayas in the north-eastern part of the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. The name “Spiti” means “The middle land” (the land between Tibet and India).

Rock art
Human-made markings placed on natural stone surfaces. These may be drawn, painted, or carved.

A marking engraved, carved or scratched into a rock surface. The rock is left in situ (as opposed to, for example, portable carved stone objects). A form of rock art.


Selected reading

Contesting antiquity and development: A report on the rock art preservation in Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh
by Ekta Singh, Vijay Bodh, and P.M. Saklani
Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines, 2017, Vol. 41, p. 86-102.

The ancient ceramic tradition of the Trans-Himalayan region of Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh: Based on new findings
by Ekta Singh, Nagendra Rawat, Rakhi Burfal, and R.C. Bhatt
Heritage: Journal of Multidisciplinary Studies in Archaeology, 2019, Vol. 7, p. 324-339

Preliminary exploration at Lari village: A petroglyph site in Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh, India
by Ekta Singh and R.C. Bhatt
Kalākalpa, 2020, Vol. 5(1), p. 175-188

A preliminary investigation of the burial sites at Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh, India
by Ekta Singh and P.M. Saklani
शोध ऩत्रिका (Shodh Patrika), 2017, Vol. 272(3-4), p. 29-43


About Ekta Singh

Dr. Singh is a researcher at the Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal (HNB Garhwal) University in Uttarakhand, India. Her research focuses on the history of the Spiti Valley through various forms of archaeological analysis. Some of her particular research interests include weaving and lithics technology.





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