Feb 1, 2002
I am afraid that we did not give you much notice about our transit time through the Miraflores Locks and are sorry about that. It seems that the live camera leaves much to be desired. The poor yachts are so dwarfed by the big container ships, etc, that we never seem to be seen. Satori started through the locks at 1:15 in the east side. On the west side was a very large container ship from Osaka, Japan named "Alligator Liberty". The transit was smooth with Satori center-locked all the way. This means that we had two lines out from the bow and two lines out from the stern. By slacking and/or tightening these lines we could control our ride keeping us in the center away from those concrete walls. We passed under the Bridge of the Americas which separates North and South America by about 2:15 and on to a mooring at Balboa Yacht Club.
I will try to send this short message today from the internet cafe while we are trying to complete our errands. Should be able to send the photos at the same time. Two of the photos were taken from the observation deck at the Gatun Locks. The view of the two smaller vessels tied to the tug will show you the same method used for us in the first part of our transit. The aft view of the container ship was taken to show the severe prop wash when the big boats move forward to clear the locks. This is the most dangerous time for the small vessels on the lock-up procedure as we are always behind the big ships.
We are badly in need of some time away from a port for a while. Our check book balance is drastically low. Seems that whenever we are in port we discover spare parts and maintenance needs that must be paid for. We will go from here out to the Las Perlas islands to subsist for a while and let our accounts replenish.
We hope that all of you are well and that winter has been kind to you so far. Let us hear from you when you have a moment.
Next message may not be for another month when we arrive in Costa Rica.
Regards from, Jane and Sander aboard Satori