Normally we jump right into traffic and ride across bridges.
The Bridge of the Americas over the Panama Canal gave us pause. There were four narrow lanes, barely wide enough to accommodate the heavy flow of traffic. There was also a railing that curved from the curb back into traffic ready to force a wobbly, slow moving bike into a car.
There was a pedestrian walkway on either side of the bridge and we decided to give it a try. The first problem we encountered was that it was too narrow to ride our encumbered bikes. We experimented by trying to pull the bikes through from the front but the bags kept catching on the chain link fence. Likewise, pushing from the rear did not work because we could not reach over the bike to steer them. Shuffling sideways while holding the bike proved almost possible but we settled on straddling the bikes and shuffling them forward. Until we could not.
The passageway narrowed further before the concrete separation barrier ended. The only way through was to remove the bags, shuffle forward and try to load the bags on the bike again while trying to balance the bike without falling out into traffic.
We continued by putting the bikes down into the lane of traffic (about a foot below the walkway) and stooping over to push them up to the crest of the bridge.
At the top, tired and frustrated, we abandoned caution, hopped on the bikes and cruised into Panama City.