22 October 2011

Jekyll Reunion

Jekyll Island may very well be one of my favorite places on Earth. I do have a bias however since I lived there from August 2003 until June 2006. Those were some fun years at the beach. During that time I was able to work with some of the smartest, kindest, and craziest people. Every now and then we get together and have little reunions. A Jekyll Reunion hasn't happened in awhile and I was delighted when Katie mentioned that she was renting a house and that we were invited. So in a small Honda Fit, 4 of us crammed in headed north.

We arrived a day early so the first morning was mostly just us exploring the beach.  Emily saw her first Black Skimmer and we had a nice shorebird morning with terns, gulls, and willets.  The sand dunes were littered with Palm Warblers and the shrub was full of mockingbirds and migrants.

After picking up our dear friend Lanie J at the airport we had veggie burgers on the beach delivered by a charming fellow.

By nightfall the whole group had arrived.  We had fun swimming in the St. Andrews sound, drinking beverages on the rooftop deck, and generally catching up on life. 

The next morning was our last and though the trip was short we tried to make the most of it.  Andy and I got up early and birded the northern end of the island.  We started at the Jekyll campground feeders where we had chickadees, Ruby-throated hummingbirds, Carolina Wrens, and some frisky squirrels.

Next we hit up the old ampitheater slough.  The normal Pied-billed Grebes, herons, and migrants were found along the trail and on the water.  The forests of Jekyll are so beautiful and each time I have a chance to walk around in them I remember how much I miss the maritime forest.  South Florida has something similiar but it's not the same to me.

We ended our day at St. Andrews, swimming with the people seining.  It's a murky water and not the prettiest of sights but the swimming was fun nonetheless. Dark marsh mud ebbs out with the tide and you can barely see a foot down.  A drastic change from the clear blue waters of Florida.  The only part wrong with this trip was that it was just way too short.  I really would like to spend a week on Jekyll with no cares in the world.  Maybe next time.

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