There are traces of human activity all over the area. There are about 50 barrows in the plantation areas alone, most of which are from the Bronze Age. The so-called Old Age Road between Viborg and a prehistoric harbour at Trans (just south of Bovbjerg Lighthouse) passes through the area. The heath was established as a result of human activity. During the Bronze Age people began to cultivate fields, forests were cleared, the ground was ploughed and, after a few years, it was exhausted and abandoned. New fields were cleared and cultivated. And so it continued as cultivated, exhausted land extended over large areas. The impoverished areas that had been abandoned were invaded by crowberry and then by heather. Heathland gradually took over large parts of western Jutland.
Excavation of gravel
Outwash plains are commonly the focus of planning for the excavation of sand, gravel and stones/boulders. The proximal parts of both outwash plains have been identified as suitable areas for quarries. Human influence on the landscape continues in this fashion. The Rom gravel quarries (Figure 20-5), located at the top point of the Kronhede outwash plain, provide coarse-grained material ranging from gravel to boulders. Profiles in the quarries reveal a systematic variation in grain size with the coarsest material near the glacier portal and the finest material further away. It is clear that the quarries reveal an illustrative section through the subsurface precisely where the glacier portal was located. A similar situation can be found at Hornet (site 14).