Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
Join Date: May 2006
Thanked 124 Times in 112 Posts
Rep Power: 12
Re: Panama Canal Expansion
Donna, when we were there they did mention but the NWP but the Nicaraguan canal had not been announced. The biggest problem was just that there so many vessels that were bigger than Panamax. The new locks also reuse the water. They have fears that with climate change and more passages there might not be enough water to keep Gatun Lake up to necessary depths while servicing locks that emptied downstream. We went down the Pacific side with just three sailboats. A huge amount of water for just us.
The original hope (plan?) was to have the new locks open now (100th anniversary), but looks like it will be another 16 months or so. The project is not just the new locks, it is also deepening and straightening the Gaillard (?) Cut above the Pacific locks. That alone is a huge task.
After the refit we have decided to sell Ainia. We want something smaller that would be could for the light summer winds of Lake Ontario, although we plan to spend at least a couple of winters in the Caribbean before heading north.