Cruising Guide Author Pat Rains Hopes so

Cruising Guide author and TrawlerFest presenter Pat Rains says a new plan for a rail link connecting the Caribbean and Pacific Ocean through Mexico could prove to be a boon to boaters. She quoted from a story in the Mexico Daily News. Here's an excerpt:

Construction of an interoceanic railway line linking the Pacific and Gulf coasts of southern Mexico will begin in January, the governor of Oaxaca has announced. Alejandro Murat said that work on the first phase of the 310-kilometer double-track line between the ports of Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, (shown above) and Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, will represent the start of a free trade agreement for the southeast of Mexico.Mexico’s largest railway operator, Ferromex, won the tendering process to operate the new line. Both port cities as well as a corridor running between them are slated to become special economic zones (SEZs) after President Enrique Peña Nieto signed decrees for their creation earlier this year. 

From Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, on the Caribbean to Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, on the Gulf of Tehuantepec.

From Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, on the Caribbean to Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, on the Gulf of Tehuantepec.

Pat Rains

Pat Rains

"For the smaller boats, transiting through Mexico will be better (faster, safer, probably cheaper) than going all the way down to Panama. Bigger boats can still go through Panama, along with billions of dollars in commercial ships," Rains wrote. She is author of "Mexico Weather for Boaters," "Mexico Boating Guide" and "Cruising Ports: The Central America Route." 

"Seriously, Panama would love all the recreational boaters to just go away, bull dozed the little yacht club building, etc. This railroad transit should be interesting, I'll watch its progress."

Small boats transiting the Panama Canal typically pay $1,000-$2,000, plus dockage while they wait their turn. And, of course, Panama is much further from the U.S. than the Veracruz region on the Gulf of Mexico.

Like Salina Cruz, Coatzacoalcos is an industrial port.

Like Salina Cruz, Coatzacoalcos is an industrial port.

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