Monday, March 28, 2011

Tuesday, March 22, 2011 – Panama Canal Transit Party Cloudy – 80s

Distance traveled from Manta, Ecuador: 594 Nautical Miles

Looks like a great day for a transit even though there are intermittent showers as we get started.  I’m up early to catch the start of the transit. 

 Early morning Panama Canal (Small)

Panama City – Pre-Dawn (transit underway)

Boats in queue (Small)

Ships and boats in queue for the Canal

Sunrise over Panama City1 (Small)

Panama City at Dawn

I brought breakfast for Ellen down to the room so we could watch some of the transit from out window – that turned out to give us a nice perspective on just how precise the locomotives and engineers have to be.  The picture below is the ship in the Miraflores locks.  There is no zooming here – the wall of the locks looks to be less than a foot away.

Miraflores Lock Wall from room (Small) 

Two shots while the ship was in the Miraflores Locks. 

Miraflores Lock start (Small)

Before the introduction of water into the locks

Miraflores Lock startMiraflores Lock finish (Small)

About six minutes later – above the surface of the locks

Panama Canal Tug (Small)

Panama Canal Tug monitoring our progress

Water released from Miraflores Locks (Small)

Water exiting the Pedro Miguel Locks

Next:  The Pedro Miguel Locks: The picture below taken from our window shows the paint from ships who did not negotiate the wall as well as they should. 

Pedro Miguel Locks from room (Small)

Another close encounter with the wall of a locks (this time the Pedro Miguel Locks) – also looks like about a foot of clearance.

Pedro Miguel Locks from room1 (Small)

Seventeen minutes later our window is well about ground level (below).

Pedro Miguel Locks from room after (Small)

Exiting the Pedro Miguel, we pass under the Centennial Bridge on our way to the Culebra Cut.

Centennial Bridge (Small)

Culebra Cut (Small) Me at the Cut (Small)

Top:  The Culebra Cut; Bottom: Me and the Cut

The train tracks below were the same ones used during the construction of the Canal.

Railraoad tracks used during the building of the PC (Small)

One of the highlights of the Culebra Cut is Gamboa City and its huge Nazi built crane, Titan.  Titan was purchased from Germany after the war for one dollar but it took $2,000,000 dollars to ship it to Panama.

Gamboa City (Small) Gamboa City and Titan (Small)

The Infinity will anchor in Gatun Lake to allow passengers on excursions in the Canal area to tender to shore. 

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