Oil Sands Discovery Centre
For an insight into the history, geology, and technology of the Athabasca Oil Sands mining process, head to this large interpretive center (515 Mackenzie Blvd., 780/743-7167, daily 9 a.m.–5 p.m. mid-May–Aug., Tues.–Sun. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. the rest of the year, adult $6, senior $5, child $4). Start your visit by watching Quest for Energy, a multimedia, big-screen presentation about the industry that has grown around the resource. The center houses an interesting collection of machinery and has interactive displays, hands-on exhibits, and interpretive presentations.
Outside is the Industrial Equipment Garden, where an older-style bucket-wheel excavator and other machinery are displayed. To be moved to this site, the excavator had to be disassembled, with some sections requiring a 144-wheel, 45-meter-long (150-foot-long) trailer for the 45-kilometer (28-mile) trip from the mine.
© Andrew Hempstead, from Moon Western Canada, 3rd Edition