Transiting the Panama Canal

2019 HAL World Cruise

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Because we’ve now transited the Panama Canal many times, it is no longer an all-attention-consuming event.  We now tend to sleep our normal 8 hours rather than set the alarm to arise at the first light of day.  We no longer have our noses plastered to the windows, or cameras attached to our hands, or layers of sunscreen to protect us from 8 hours of exposure to the sun.

Today, we awoke while sailing thru the first approach channel.  I took some photos from our cabin as we transited the Gatun Locks.  We ate lunch while sailing across Gatun Lake.  At this moment in time, we are transiting the Miraflores Locks and will soon be on our way to Fuerte Amador, the port city for Panama City.

Please read the blog from 1/14/2018 for more photos and details.

Meanwhile, here are the photos taken from our cabin this morning:

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Because we’ve been thru the Panama Canal before, we chose to view the passage, this time, from our cabin and on the TV. It’s amazing how narrow the canal is! You think you could reach out and touch the wall!
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Every time a ship goes thru the canal,the prow is opened to the passengers for exceptionally grand viewing. Notice how few people are on the prow this time. This is a highly well-traveled group. A degree of “been there…done that” has crept in.
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In this photo, we are transiting the Gatun Locks. It will take three different lock systems to move us up the 85 feet to Gatun Lake from the Caribbean and then down to the Pacific.
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As we rise in the lock, normal canal operations are visible. trucks and people are often spotted walking by.
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It takes about 8 hours to navigate the entire journey. It is about 40 miles from seashore to oceanside thru 3 locks systems (Gatun, Pedro Miguel, & Miraflores), 2 lakes (Gatun & Miraflores) and the Culebra Cut. As I write this, we are not there yet!

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