Sunday, March 31, 2019

3-31-2019 Friends Trip to Cayes

Unfortunately, Eric had work meetings on this gorgeous Sunday, but Cara jumped at the chance to go out with friends to the
Cayes (via our friends at Happy Go Luckie Tours).

Emma wanted to try someplace other than Bread and Butter Caye since that's where everyone seems to go. So, we first tried
Little Peter Caye.

Unfortunately, we were turned away since they had guests. Too bad because there is good snorkeling there. In fact, that's
where Cara saw the coolest jellyfish she has ever seen.

Next we tried Saddle Caye North, but decided against it because of the many barking dogs. However, we went to the other
side of the island and snorkeled and spear-fished off the boat. Cara and Siobhan were blessed to see a pair of beautiful reef
squid and a huge barracuda. Cara forgot to take the GoPro, though, so no pics from snorkeling.

The second boat with Cheryl's parents and their friends.

Finally we tried and were welcomed at Hideaway Caye.

It's a lovely little island with an actual bar, open to the public.

The bar was a nice shady place to have lunch and chill out.

 Owners Dustin and Kim said they get a fair amount of sailboats that stop there, but today it was just our two boats.

Cara loved that they kept the island natural with all the mangroves, and just built boardwalks between the buildings.

These are red mangroves.

All the buildings are over the water in the interior of the island.

This is a black mangrove.

All these little straw looking things are for the black mangroves to breathe.

Unfortunately, the large amounts of sargassum that have been washing up throughout Belize covered some up, killing many
of the 120 year old black mangroves. That tells us there hasn't been this kind of sargassum invasion in 120 years - makes you
think, doesn't it?

On one small spot of land they have some cute ducks.

More red mangroves - Cara loves the tangled root system.

A nice spot to chill.

The boardwalk to the dock.

It's a little hard to see, but there were loads of tiny crabs around the black mangroves.

Siobhan braving the muck to examine a newly appeared red "moss" that seems to be killing the red mangroves. :(

The green leaves are on new red mangroves that the owners are planting. The small one in front is about one year old, and
the larger ones in back are about four years old.

After lunch and relaxing we headed off to another nearby caye.

We stopped at one of the Pelican Cayes where Happy Go Luckie Tours used to take people on trips.

Gilly and Emma.

Cheers to a wonderful day with good friends!

Siobhan and Shelly.

Luckie, Cheryl, Khaya on Gilly's shoulders, Emma and Les.
Siobhan, Shelly and Cara.

Shelly, Luckie and Cheryl.

Remnants of an old fishing shack.

Gilly and Khaya went snorkeling around the island.

Khaya showed some of us this cute baby starfish (aka sea star) they found.

Khaya the tree climber.

Sand dollar.

On the way back to Hopkins we cut through Anderson Lagoon, which is where they do the bioluminescence tours.

Heading into the cut that goes back to Sittee River.

Back to Sittee River.

It was an absolutely fantastic day!!!

After the tour we were invited to stop at our friend John's for a bit, and Eric joined us there. This is the view from John's top deck.