Oddly enough, no one does much to promote this place. It's not easy to find, and once there, there is nothing glitzy about it. Of course, the operations of an iron mine which operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and has been doing that for decades should not be glitzy...but somehow it really is interesting.
Anyway, getting to the largest open-pit iron mine in the world is easy if someone tells you. It's almost a secret...probably because no one is making any $$ from the public presentation...it's FREE! That said, there are some really pleasant volunteers who staff the operation, and they've provided a range of interesting factual materials.
But really, you're here to see the mine, right? Well, the space is huge and in some ways looks a bit like the Grand Canyon. However, the actual work of mining, well, it's going on a mile or more away. Imagine: Huge trucks which can haul 240 tons (that's TONS!) of material with one load running all over the landscape, but it's more than a mile away. I'll try to post a photo of the trucks...but for kids...well it's not so exciting to see the mine operations underway (maybe for adults too).
The good folks have tried to make up for that by having a retired truck near the entrance to the area. Kids/adults can climb up into it, and get the feel a driver might have of driving a small house around for 12 hours per day (that's the shift).
Long story short, if you're nearby, you should take a look. As you drive to the site you'll pass the somewhat ghostly remains of North Hibbing...the town which had to move to accommodate the mines.
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