Dan wanted to work on the engine today so the kids and I headed up to the office to see if there was anything she needed us to volunteer to do.  Judy didn’t have anything specific in mind, just asked to pick up any trash we saw, so we decided to go for a hike to the Causeway and Butterfly Beach.  The trail winds itself through the trees, over rocks, and eventually over a bridge.  As we crossed the bridge we saw what we thought were 4 Atlantic Stingrays.  These are much smaller than the Southern Stingrays, and tend to stay in shallower areas of sand.  They were less than a foot across, more of a brown color,   with very long skinny tails.  One was right near the shore and would follow Tessa as she walked back and forth near the water’s edge.  We took turns lightly touching its back and then putting our fingers in the water in front of it and letting it flutter up to us.  Rays are so and I am so glad we have been able to really experience them.  It was hot so we didn’t linger too long.  An interesting thing about the island is that the trees are not very tall.  It was rare on the trails to find shade, so we trodded along under the midday sun in 90 degree heat.  Several small butterflies lead us through the Butterfly trail.  The trial continued on to the top of the hill then wrapped its way down coming close to big underground caves we worried about falling into.  It was a long trail and just when we were at our most miserable from the heat, the trail opened to white sand in a crescent shape bay; Butterfly Beach.  We took off our shoes and dug our toes into some of the softest sand you will ever feel.  Tessa who always has a swimsuit under her clothes dove right it.  I waded in to cool off my feet, and encouraged Tristan to go skinny dipping.  He did, but just for a short time.  I guess he was afraid of someone seeing him, although we had the beach and pretty much the anchorage to ourselves.  The water at 86 degrees and super salty is not a hugely refreshing, but it helped.  We decided to take a shortcut back to the boat by wading through the water and connecting to the trail off Bow Wow Beach.  Two hours later we were back at the boat and heard the happy sounds of the port engine running.  Dan had fixed the problem of air in the fuel line. Way to go Dan! 

After lunch we wanted to do some more exploring so we all got into kayaks.  We brought our own, and they have some at the office you can use at no charge.  The current was running strong so we had a race up current to a beach at the entrance to the park.  After a brief tour, we floated the dinghies down current, staying closer to the shore observing the wildlife.  Dan took off to explore a wreck and Tristan, Tessa and I headed up a creek to see what we could find.  After a short time we were chased back by bugs and it didn’t get any better when we got back to our boat.  Of our entire trip, this place is definitely the most buggy.  It is not just the mosquitoes, but the flies and the worse no seeums we have ever come across.  There will be no sleeping tonight.  It is times like this I really miss air conditioning.