I am back in Panama, and we are scheduled to transit southbound from the Atlantic to the Pacific starting this afternoon. I have been joined by friends Marianne Wheeler, Steve and Charlene Swierkowski, and Isabelle Deneyer, as I must have 4 line handlers aboard in addition to myself in order to transit.
We are scheduled to pick up our canal advisor ( a requirement) at 3:15pm today, and enter the Gatun locks at 3:45pm. We should complete locking up to Gatun lake at 6pm, and anchor nearby at 6:30pm, spending the night on the lake. At 6am tomorrow, we’ll receive our advisor again, motor some 30 miles across the lake, and enter the Pedro Miguel locks, then the Miraflores locks, locking down to the Pacific ocean, and finish about 1:30pm.
I will drop off the crew at the Balboa Yacht Club on the Pacific side, then continue on my way to San Francisco. They will fly home in a few hours, while I will sail for about a month. It’s not clear yet whether I will sail a coastal route, an offshore route, and a combination. The weather forecast right now suggests I will start up the coast, at least for the first 5 days, but I’ll talk more about that when I get there.
For now my focus is on starting my transit of the Panama Canal today.
5/3/12 8am Panama time (6am California)