The Strathcona Science Park is the only Provincial park in the River Valley Alliance park system. Over the past century, this area has... more » been home to a number of coal mines, a gravel extraction pit and finally a lanfill before becoming a provincial park in 1980.
As part of Alberta's 75th Anniversary in 1980, the Alberta Heritage Fund invested $40 million in today's dollars to create the park. It consisted of six main buildings showcasing the park's rich heritage of settlement of over 4000 years. The buildings hosted displays of the different artifacts that were unearthed here. In the south end of the park, there is a wooden trail which was built in order for the public to observe archeoligists at work.
Currently, the Park has been left as a natural area with the buildings closed to the public since 1993. Sunridge Ski Hill occupies the northern most building and runs a small ski operation. In 1987, a tornado tore through the Park, leaving a trail of destruction in the trees, but left the buildings largely unharmed.
This walk takes you back in history when this was a functioning park. You first pass the four buildings that make up the centre of the Science Park then carry on down a path with stunning views. Further on, you will pass the abandoned fire pit area then find yourself by the abandoned Archaeological Building which used to host the artifacts discovered here. There is also a sign explaining the activities that used to be supported in the park. Just past the sign is the start of a wooden path that loops back into the park. This walk is a real treat as it leads to a spectacular lookout which makes for some amazing photos. The stroll back is along the same path, but you also get to walk around the entire central picnic site back to the man parking lot. less «