|Here comes our Adviser|
|Warship 46 "Rentz" and the Peace Boat|
We thought we would be lucky and go through the locks with a US Navy Guided-missile frigate the USS Rentz..."Warship 46" as they were called on the VHF Radio. It sounds pretty cool to listen as they spoke on the VHF Radio..."This is US Warship 46..... ". Somehow saying "This is Warship Sunnyside Up..." just didn't fit into the mold. As luck would have it they turned to the service docks, and just happened to be where the "Peace Boat" was also at for service..interesting photo with the two side by side.
|We side-tied along this Tug. A ship is in the lock ahead.|
Soon we were side-tied with the tug as the water raised in each lock...very fun!
The trip was beautiful, sitting a deck of Sunnyside Up we watched as huge ships passed on their way to the Mira Flores locks.
|Getting Sunnyside Up ready for the locks|
We entered the Mira Flores Locks at 11am with hopes to make the trip in one day, but again luck was not with us, and at 3pm we were within reach of the Gatun Locks (Caribbean side) and our adviser said it was a no-go. Ahg! But we're right here! Nope! They are finished "Locking Down" for the day and only boats "Locking Up" into the lake were going through.
|Tug with a car carrier under the Centennial Bridge|
We were having great weather..until....CRACK! Lightening began to strike all around us and CLOSE! Within minutes rain began to pour as we were all huddled up in the cockpit. Carolyn made a great lasagna dinner that kept the crew filled and ready for the next day "locking down."
|Spending the night on the lake tied to this HUGE float|
It didn't take long for the crew to ready the lines and await Captain Tom and the Adviser's orders as we entered the locks.
This time we were to "Center Lock" which means we have the lock to ourselves and all four 200' lines are tossed to the men standing on the lock's edge to help us through.
|Line Handler Paul and Captain Tom in the lock - Notice ship in the rear|
We were through the locks quickly and dropped off the Adviser near the city of Colon. We entered Shelter Bay Marina at 6pm with a half hour daylight to spare.
|The pool and hot tub at Shelter Bay Marina on the Caribbean side...nice!|
Sadly, on our way back we were on the highway and our taxi hit a large dog crossing the road. Damage was pretty extensive as we got out and checked the bumper hanging down, lights shinning up to the sky, and the radiator fan rubbing against the radiator. Not good.
Soon, we were on our way to Panama City with repairs the best we could do and arrived at 11pm.
|Tom and Carolyn aboard Sunnyside Up at dock Shelter Bay|
We hope Tom and Carolyn have a great sail on their way to the San Blas Islands and destinations unknown beyond that.... Ahh, Cruisers....you never know where they're headed.
Best of luck to Sunnyside Up, and thank you for a great trip. We hope to meet up with you "Out There" again somewhere.