Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Panama Canal

On our second day in Panama we ventured to see the Canal with our new German Friend. This German kid was on our bus and he ended up staying out our hostel so we ended up wandering the city with him for a day.  


This is the four story museum and visitor center for one of the main locks. It was actually a really good museum. And I found out that there was a Anna Meyer and a William Meyer who both worked on the canal during its years of development. I am pretty sure we weren't related it is always amazing to see where your name can turn up...Like on the no fly list...my mom and I know that well ; )


Here is the side of the locks entering the canal, so coming from saltwater. 


and this is the side leaving the locks into the canal that is freshwater. 


Here are the actual locks doors that provide the seal for the water levels to rise and lower and then open for a boat to come through. 


Here are two small boats that were going through while we were there. Poor guys had to wait quite a while for the big boat to get into the locks before the water level could be lowered. 


Here is the big boat that came through while we were there. It was pretty neat to see. 




There are these little cars that the boat attaches too that keep it steady while the water lowers and raises to make sure that it does not hit the side of the wall. It was definitely a tight squeeze for this big guy.


All together we actually spent quite a bit of time at the canal. About five hours. But we wanted to make sure that we got to see a big ship. 

They are currently working on expanding the canal. Which in my opinion should be way more of a controversy. They are "relocating" animals and plants and removing a big chunk of land in order to make room for a big lock that will allow for larger vessels. 

It was weird though cause it wasn't what i expected. I am not sure what exactly I expected but it wasn't it. I think I thought it would be like a river or that I would be able to see it from an arial view (not sure where I got that idea it is kind of like how i thought the chunnel would be like an underwater aquarium where i would be able to see fishies not like a dark tunnel....hmmmm life is weird). 

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