Photo of the Week
January 11, 2004

Here is a great aerial photo of the Gatun Spillway with all gates open.  I recently came across this 1970's vintage post card and reminded me of the time we sat the Tarpon Club and watched a full spill like this.  This could have been the same spill.  You wonder how the bridge can take this kind of abuse.  See some other photos of the Gatun Spillway and bridge during a full spill on the CZ Images web site by (clicking here) and (here).

The bridge at the Gatun Spillway was rebuilt this past year by the Panama Canal Authority.  The old steel trestle bridge was removed and replaced by a concrete span.
This photo is a poor newspaper scan of what the bridge looked like when the trestle was removed.  Photo from the El Faro newspaper (former Spillway), photographer Gil Garcia.
Here is a really good photo showing the cement span in place.  This photo was taken by CZ Images contributor Nina Brown.  Note the netting to catch workers if they fell.

When I visited Panama this past March, we visited the Gatun Spillway and we could see that some sort of work was beginning to take place.  The old trestle bridge was still in place at that time, but they had earthen dikes to control water flow on the spillway apron. You can see some of these earthen dikes beyond the bridge that have grass growing on them.  I don't have a final photo of what the bridge looks like today, but will post one when I get one.

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