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Nina and Fred Fenton have gone on 40 cruises, including five times through the Panama Canal since 1998, but they keep coming back.While aboard the Norwegian Sun on their latest journey into the storied waterway linking two great oceans, the retired couple from Lincoln, California, mused at the simple – yet very efficient – workings of the century-old engineering wonder. Twenty-six million gallons of water can flow into a lock in just eight minutes. Gravity fills the locks with water from Miraflores and Gatun lakes, which are located on the continental divide between the locks in this 77-kilometer isthmus. Borg said the shortcut between oceans which cost Norwegian Sun a $379,000 transit fee on this trip saves ships three to four weeks that otherwise would be spent going around the southern tip of South America.Mathison and his wife, Pat, spent the day taking dozens of canal passage photos from various decks and playing cards near a cafeteria window that offered an excellent view. At one point, they even saw a large crocodile in the water. Norwegian Sun is one of the largest ships that can transit the canal, Capt.
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