The Panama Canal, nearing its 100th year anniversary was quite something to experience. We cruised aboard the "Pacific Queen" and had the unique opportunity to see the Canal up close in operation. We transitted with the big ships and experienced the process up close and personal.
There are two chambers for each set of locks (Northbound and Southbound). As we approach the first lock you can see the other chamber to the right.
These next two pictures show how the water has risen-it only takes 8 minutes-and the gates are now opening. We then travel across the large Lake Milaflores to the next set of locks, the Pedro Miguel Locks (on the Pacific side), which raise us again to the level of the next Lake-Lake Gatun.
Since this was built nearly 100 years ago, it is unable to accomodate today's supertankers, so they are currently working on the 6 billion dollar expansion project, which will be done in 2114.
This was amazing!!
Tomorrow, an early morning flight will land us on the Island of Bocas del Toro and then we'll ferry over to the Isla Popa. It's now R&R time on the Carribean side tropical islands of Panama (where several International Survivor shows have taken place). Stay tuned....