One of the more interesting history books I’ve read in the last few years is A Path Between The Seas : The Creation of the Panama Canal by David McCullough. The book, while at times a rather dense historical document, reveals the incredible hardships endured by workers (made many times more difficult by diseases like malaria) and the immense engineering challenge it took to build the canal. It was also one of the great events of the turn o the century that signaled the emergence of the United States as a global power. I got a chance to see the canal years ago when I was traveling through Latin America, and thought it was amazing. But I never actually got to ride through the canal.
Well, in a way, I can now say I did. This video over at YouTube is a very well done time lapse of a trip through the entire canal. You get to see not just how the locks work, but how the canal looks through some of its broader stretches. The video itself is kind of a historical document, especially since the Panamanians are making big changes to the canal. It’s a neat — and quick — little ride that you too can take right here.