February 21, 2010

crossing the panama canal, for real this time!!

this time we crossed the canal with puerto seguro. A scary but very exciting feeling of going to the pacific at last. We were given our turn for 4:00 pm to cross nested with other two sailboats. the one in the middle was s/v sea mist, a beautiful and big oyster steering for all of us with very nice canadians on board; to the starboard side was the second boat, s/v nica a bavaria with a very cool family from australia. we were the smallest boat on the port side and our crew was made of one danish, an american couple from california, and our panamanian canal advisor.

we tied all the boats together and went inside the first set of locks on the atlantic side (the gatun locks) at 6:00 pm behind a small colombian freighter named macondo. when we finished, we moored at the gatun lake and spent the night after a relaxing wine and a great conversation with all on board.

check out this video of one of the chambers of the gatun locks being filled up with water:

the next day we started at 6:00 am and motored across the gatun lake for 5 hours and after we went through the pedro miguel and miraflores locks in the afternnon. by 3:00 pm we had finished the crossing and anchored in panama city. a very rolly anchorage but we spent the night there very happy after having crossed the canal safely and without a scratch to the boat!!

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