Jekyll Island was my home away from home growing up. My grandparents had fallen in love with the island and had started vacationing there a long time ago, and eventually bought a vacation home there. My own travels to the island started when I was maybe 7 or 8, camping in a pop-up camper, in the days before my grandparents had a house there. Once the house was purchased, Jekyll became about the only spot we ever went to on holidays and for vacations. My grandparents eventually retired to the home, but sadly my grandmother lost her fight with cancer just a few months later. Granddad stayed for many more years, until failing health┬ánecessitated┬áhim being closer to family.┬áSince then, until a couple of weeks ago, I’d only been to the island one time, to spend a few days of my honeymoon back in 2000.

We took a family trip down to Disney World a few weeks ago, and Jekyll made a lot of sense as a stopover point. We originally only planned to stop on the way down, but had so much fun seeing it again that we returned for a night on the way back. Parts of the island are undergoing a big change from what had remained stuck in the 50s and 60s. The old convention center and shopping center when you first come onto the island are now bulldozed. A beautiful, modern convention facility now sits there, with groundbreaking soon to begin on a fancy hotel. All the old beach parking lots have been replaced by beautifully landscaped lots with modern facilities. The whole place looks very upscale.

We had a lot of fun showing my son the island. He loved the Jekyll Island Club and the neighboring Wharf, the beach up around the Clam Creek trail, Driftwood Beach and more. I managed to get up early on the very last day of our trip and venture out to Driftwood Beach before the sun came up. I hadn’t shot any landscape stuff in quite a while, and it was great to get out and shoot. (I do wish I’d gotten out there just a bit earlier. It got light way too quickly).

All of the pictures except one were taken with my Fujifilm X-Pro1 mirrorless camera with a borrowed 18-55 zoom lens. It did a pretty great job. Maybe not quite a good as my D700 SLR would have down, but close enough that it is hard to say. One of the photos shown here was shot on 120 film with my medium format TLR, the Yashica-mat 124g. (I developed that roll myself, then sent off the rest a few days ago to be developed at a lab, so maybe I’ll have more later).

I’ll be posting some Disney stuff in another blog entry (and probably post some from our stop at South Carolina’s South of the Border), but I think my favorite pics from the trip are the Driftwood Beach ones from Jekyll.