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Swingin' on a Star
Ship's log for the circumnavigating Saint Francis 50 catamaran, "Swingin on a Star".
Haunted Boat
03/29/2008, Shelter Bay

This boat will make you do a double take as it blasts through the marina. As you may notice no one is driving it.

It was one of the last things from the 007 filming to go. There is a guy sitting inside the center console that operates the boat. This allows the actors to pretend like they're driving the boat while basically ignoring the waterway and focusing on shooting guns and roundhouse kicking the bad guys into the drink.

Margaret loved this boat and I kept wondering if it was still around because she had bought it.

03/28/2008, Sheleter Bay Marina

We have to wait 4 weeks to go through the canal.

Entrance to the Atlantic Locks
03/27/2008, Panama Canal

We dinghied around the Bahia Limon a bit. It is a huge bay with a lot of chop due to the large fetch and the big super tanker sized channel in the break water. It is best near the edges in a dinghy but you have to be careful because there are several reefs that crop up suddenly outside of the main thoroughfares.

We made our way up to the entrance to the Gatun Locks that take you from the Atlantic Ocean into Gatun lake.

The Panama Canal Yacht Club
03/26/2008, Colon

The Panama Canal Yacht Club is the old school hang out for yachties in Colon. It is right next to the train station and close to town, but you don't really want to go to town in Colon. The yacht club is a little tired feeling and I think I would only choose it if Shelter Bay was full up. That said the food is better with a wider selection than Shelter Bay and it is much easier to get to Panama City from the PCYC. Shelter Bay is far from everything and on the other side of the locks (add 0 - 1 hour) as well.

The Panama Canal Railroad
03/25/2008, Panama Canal

Well we are back down to a crew of three (counting Roq). Margaret left yesterday and Em left today. Both had early flights and because Shelter Bay is so far from everything, and because you have to cross the Gatun lock which can add an hour, both left at 3AM.

Hideko and I went with Em to Panama City International this morning. We took the Panama Canal Railroad back to Colon to see the sights. The railroad only takes passengers from Panama City to Colon at 7:10 AM and from Colon to Panama City at around 5PM. It is a nice historical type train trip with great views of the canal.

The Gamboa Resort
03/24/2008, Gamboa

The Gamboa Resort is situated in the Rain Forest along the Panama Canal. The lodge is built in an area that used to house US canal workers years ago. It is a very nice looking place with tours of the jungle and the canal as well as nice grounds of its own.

The Admeasurer
03/23/2008, Shelter Bay

Happy Easter!

Well I guess the Canal is a 24/7/365 operation. The Admeasurer showed up on Easter at one in the afternoon.

We measured in at just under 50 feet, which gets you a $600 ish rate. Then the Admeasurer saw our USCG documentation that said 50. They can not record less than the documentation. This cost us another $250. :-( It is good to have a boat that measures 49' 11". The canal and some marinas put a serious tax on that last inch.

We received a little Panama Canal ID card that stays with the boat for the rest of its life making future transits easier.


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