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Hiking to Ben's Cave
After re-crossing the stream in the kayaks, we left the other guides to load kayaks onto trailers, while we hiked up to see Ben's Cave. We crossed the highway and climbed a small hill. Actually, since the highest point on Grand Bahama is something like 60 feet above sea level, all hills are small.
Ben, our guide, pointed out interesting facts along the way. For example, the special pine trees (native only to this island) breath through their roots. If underbrush begins to build up, the even poke roots straight up toward the sky to breath. If the underbrush gets too thick, the tree suffocates. Thus, the periodic fires that clear the underbrush are critical for the survival of these trees.
At one time, large thousand-year-old pines covered the island. A lumber company clear-cut them all. Now all of the slow-growing pines are rather small, and less than 100 years old, a classic instance of the Tragedy of the Commons.
Ben was full of information, and was the most memorable tour guide of the cruise.