A giant vessel, built in Saskatoon for the Alberta oil patch, is prepared for transport to Fort McMurray. ((Jill Smith/CBC))

One of the longest and heaviest loads ever to navigate the roads of Saskatchewan is set to leave Saskatoon for a slow journey to Alberta's oil-patch at Fort McMurray.

A pressure vessel, manufactured at the Hitachi Canadian Industries plant in Saskatoon, will take two days just to reach the Alberta border.

The dimensions of the tank dwarf anything ever moved in Saskatchewan, according to Brett Bergermann the project manager for Mammoet Canada Western Ltd., which is in charge of the load.

"The vessel itself weighs 384 metric tons. It's well over 200 feet long and 20 feet wide," Bergermann told CBC News as crews prepared for the trek.

When upright, the vessel towers about 19 stories.

Bergermann said it took one year to work out the logistics of transporting the vessel.

"It's like every kid's dream: getting to play with the big toys," he added, with a chuckle.

Just getting the vessel out of the manufacturing shop and onto the transport trailer will take three days.

The movers plan to hit the road at the stroke of midnight, on Monday. They will manoeuvre the streets of Saskatoon throughout the wee hours of Tuesday morning, until they reach Highway 7.

At that point, they will pull over and wait for daylight to arrive, as it is not safe to travel the highways with such a load in the dark.

In addition to the moving crew, assistance will be provided by SaskTel and SaskPower, to deal with overhead lines.

There will also be police escorts.