Friday, May 27, 2016

Panama Canal Cruise-------- Installment ONE and Only

 Transiting the Panama Canal was a whole day event. $250,000, 3 sets of locks with a 33 km transit across  Gutan Lake dividing the first from the second and third  set of locks. The Gutan, the Pedro Miguel and the Miraflores Locks. We had been following  the Disney ship on the left since we left Columbia. He paid over $400,000 just for the privilege of transiting the locks. We will be entering into the right lock behind the container ship. Interesting to see the massive back log of ships just hanging out in a staging area in the ocean outside the canal waiting for their reservation time to enter the locks

 This is our ship transiting through the last set of locks via the web cam being monitored by Christine and Mike back home in Portland. Norm and I are up there somewhere on the deck of the ship. Probably under the eves of the ship trying to stay out of the rain. The humidity was 100% at this time of the day.

Harbor Pilots board the boat prior to entering the port waters of the Panama Canal. The ms Maasdam Captain turns over control of the ship to these Harbor Pilots and Canal Pilots who will maneuver our ship through the adjacent waters and into the Canal Locks.  Also boarding was a narrator who spoke throughout  the day periodically describing the journey to the ship passengers.  We counted 19 people de-boarding our ship after crossing through the Panama Canal and out of the Harbor. Here is an interesting link I found on Harbor Pilots.

Panama Canal Locomotives better known as Lock Mules. They don't actually tow anyone through the canal. They attach steel cables to stabilize the ship preventing it from banging into the sides of the canal, damaging ship and walls.. There are 4 Lock Mules stabilizing the ship with 2 steel cables each holding the ms Maasdam.  Two at the bow, one on each side and two at the stern, one on each side.

Just passing through the Mirafloes locks. We are transiting from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.

Man made Gutan Lake connects the Gutan Locks on the Atlantic with the Pedro Miguel  and Miraflores Locks on the Pacific.

Empty Container ships.Seems some of the container ships haul their cargo to one end of the Panama Canal, off load the containers to the rail lines to be transported via that rail line to the the other side of the Panama Canal to be picked up by  waiting container ship to continue on it's final destination.

Centennial Bridge on the Panama Canal in the back ground. Built as a replacement bridge to carry the heavy traffic along the Pan American Highway. The only rain we encountered on our 15 day Cruise.

1 comment:

  1. woW! Thanks for sharing ...... added trip to my Bucket List. Bessy.