In the summer of 2012, The Washington Post embarked on a trip that traced the 1,700-mile length of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline, a $7 billion project that had aroused intense controversy in Washington. Their journey by car from the oil sands of Fort McMurray to Edmonton, both in Canada, down the spine of America to the Texas coast brought this inanimate piece of steel pipe to life. They met corporate executives, small town saloon owners, ranchers and oil workers. They visited vast open pit mines and the crowded interior of worker trailers. They met with environmentalists and entrepreneurs alike, all to paint a comprehensive picture of how construction of the Keystone XL pipeline will affect Americans. This project is presented in blog format and includes videos, photo galleries and text stories. Given the method in which this project was produced, it may make sense to view the project beginning at the bottom, working one’s way up the page