The Panama railroad is one of the oldest in the Continent. It is the first transcontinental railway built in 1855 in an effort to supply the high demand for transportation from the East to the West Coast to gold hungry forty-niners. Gold seekers chose the Panama route instead of the difficult, plodding journey across the plains, desert and mountains of the uncivilized, Indian-infested overland route.
On February 17, 1998, The Panama Canal Railway Company, a joint venture between Kansas City Southern, a U.S. Class I Railroad, and Mi-Jack Products, North America’s leading independent intermodal terminal operator, was awarded a 50-year concession to rebuild and operate the line.
With an investment of $80 million dollars, the revitalized railroad provides an efficient intermodal link between the Pacific and Atlantic ports and complements the existing hub transportation infrastructure provided by the Canal, the Colon Free Trade Zone, the port terminals, highways and airports.
In addition, its luxurious passenger service allows travelers to enjoy a journey through the lush jungles of Panama flanking the scenic Panama Canal. PCRC is catering both to business executives commuting between Panama City and Colon, as well as tourists traveling from Colon’s cruise terminals to Panama City.
The Panama Canal Railway is one of the great train rides of the world. Along with its colorful history, the railroad follows a picturesque path across the Isthmus of Panama. The line flanks the Panama Canal passing through lush rainforests, cruising alongside the Canal’s locks, through the historic Gaillard Cut and gliding over slender causeways in Gatun Lake.
It effectively links one of the World’s less traveled but most attractive tourism corridors between Colon on the Atlantic Coast and Panama on the Pacific. Passengers disembarking at the Colon 2000 Cruise Terminal, the Gatun Yacht Club, or at Pier 6 in Cristobal can enjoy different shore excursions offered in Panama and ride the historic railroad as did our forefathers in their quest for wealth during the California Gold Rush.
Last Sunday, after my shooting spree at Paraiso and Corozal’s cemeteries, I saw this bright yellow train loaded with 40-foot containers traveling from Balboa to Cristobal. It was a long convoy of container as long as the eye could see . The scene was so enticing, I parked my car, fetched my camera, and shot several pictures of the train in slow motion.
This is what I saw. (Click on the photographs to enlarge them.)
Photograph of the last section of the convoy traveling from Balboa on the Pacific Side to Cristobal on the Atlantic Side. (Credit: Omar Upegui R.)
The railroad serves as a complement to the Panama Canal carrying containers from one side of the Isthmus to the other; just like a dry canal. (Credit: Omar Upegui R.)
As you can see, the main purpose of the railroad is to transport containers from one ocean to the other. (Credit: Omar Upegui R.)
The investment of the Panama Canal Railway Company has been considerable. They have a first class transportation equipment to support their services in Panama. (Credit: Omar Upegui R.)
A long line of empty double-stack cars waits for the next train to the Atlantic Coast. (Omar Upegui R.)
The Panama Canal Railway Company is currently an organization that plays a strategic role in making Panama one of the most important international commercial hubs of the world. Good Day.
Read Full Post »