After a night of refreshing sleep, we awoke around sunrise. The park ranger came by a few minutes later to collect his mooring fee ($30/night). We then had a bowl of cereal before releasing the mooring ball at Hawksbill Cay. Our journey today would be short – a quick four mile jaunt northward to the next major island, Shroud Cay.
Shroud Cay, a three mile long island, is unique among the islands that we have visited thus far in that there a number creeks which traverse the island from west to east. These salt water creeks meander through mangroves as they move along. After picking up our mooring ball off this cay, we had a quick lunch and then put our 2-person kayak in the water. We don’t use it often, but today was an ideal day for it.
There are several creeks which beg for exploration, but we decided to take the dinghy to the northernmost creek. This is the only one of the creeks which completely transects the island, affording a journey from the Exuma Banks to the deep waters of the Exuma Sound. We tied our dinghy behind Dalí and made our way to the north end of the island. After beaching our dinghy, we boarded our kayak and began a beautiful 1.25 mile journey up this creek flowing with crystal clear Bahamian water. As we winded our way along, we enjoyed a feast for the eyes consisting of sparkling water, jagged rocks, waterside mangroves, and other creekside vegetation. As we made our way out to the Sound, a blue heron flew across the bow of Dalí. We don’t see nearly as many large waterfowl in the Bahamas as we did in Florida, so that was a treat. Eventually, we rounded the last bend, exposing the magnificent white sand and multi-hued blue and green waters of the Atlantic. Superlatives fail me. This was definitely one of the most beautiful beaches Cindy and I have ever visited. It was one of the most gorgeous landscapes I have ever laid my eyes on. It was so romantic having this beautiful tropical paradise to ourselves. I felt like I had stepped out onto a movie set in the most spectacular tropical setting imaginable. We walked out onto the long sand bar jutting out into the deep water, with water coming up to our mid-thighs. We then dove into a deep aquamarine pool just off the beach for a refreshing swim. What follows are a number of photos of my new favorite spot on earth (or close to it):
After enjoying this pristine piece of paradise for a little while, we returned to our kayak and enjoyed the 1.25 mile return trip just as much as the outward journey. We found Dalí just as we had left her, retied the kayak to her stern and returned back to Beatitude for the rest of the afternoon and evening. Once aboard, we sat out on the front deck for a while soaking up the warm rays of sunshine on this late February day. How blessed we felt!