St. Andrews State Park, Panama City

No deep insights at this stop.  No pithy quotes.  Not really any interesting people talked to.  Just our nicest campsite yet right on the water with some great park wildlife to point the camera at.

This park sneaks up on you. The drive in takes you through a pretty typical beachfront area with large hotels, kitschy trinket shops, and local clubs - mostly closed for the season.  Then almost without warning you enter the gates of St. Andrews and instantly you get a glimpse of what the area looked like before greedy developers started serving the interests of beach-going tourists.

We intended this just as an overnighter, but seeing a buck just off the parking lot while MsBoyink made the arrangements convinced us that an extra night would be needed.  We scored a great waterfront spot, close to restrooms and showers, and (evidently) on the deer’s path for an evening stroll.

I finally got a chance to play with some long-exposure photography with the DSLR.  Data and I experimented with some manual shutter releases and “painting” objects in the frame with a flashlight.  My large LED worked to light up boats anchored offshore, and for closer up work a small penlight worked better.

Sailboats at night (we hit them with a flashlight).

Sailboats at night (we hit them with a flashlight).

Bay lights at night.

Bay lights at night.

Same boats by day.

Same boats by day.

In my socks, chasing a one-antlered deer up the beach with my camera

In my socks, chasing a one-antlered deer up the beach with my camera

MsBoyink explores.

MsBoyink explores.

More deer in the park.

More deer in the park.

Cormorants flying. These are diving ducks.

Cormorants flying. These are diving ducks.

Pelican flying.

Pelican flying.

Crazy dude surfing at 50 degrees.

Crazy dude surfing at 50 degrees.

Data and Storybird digging at the cliffs

Data and Storybird digging at the cliffs

What?

What?

More birds on the beach.

More birds on the beach.

Birds on the rocks.

Birds on the rocks.

I just liked the way the sun was hitting it.

I just liked the way the sun was hitting it.

Sunrise from our campsite.

Sunrise from our campsite.

7 Comments St. Andrews State Park, Panama City

  1. Picture of SueSueJanuary 28, 2011

    Wow!  That is a great camp site and some awesome pictures! So glad that you and Data had some time to learn some camera/photo shoot skills.  The wildlife shots are gorgeous.  Thank you for sharing.

  2. Picture of Phil L.Phil L.January 28, 2011

    Awesome pictures. And yes, an awesome story: Finding cool place you wouldn’t otherwise have stumbled upon - while having the flexibility to spend more time there, just because you want to. Isn’t this why you went in the first place? A+!

  3. Picture of BoyinkBoyinkJanuary 29, 2011

    Hey Phil -

    It’s definitely one of the reasons we went..;)  Another was meeting people, which didn’t happen at this stop in FL but we are making up for it in our current spot in Mobile, AL.

  4. Picture of Christy @ TechnosyncraticChristy @ TechnosyncraticJanuary 29, 2011

    This looks like a fantastic campground - we’ll definitely have to stop there on our way through the area!  And using a flashlight/penlight to highlight objects at night is a clever idea and seems to have resulted in some really cool photos.  :)

  5. Picture of BoyinkBoyinkJanuary 29, 2011

    Thanks for the comment Christy.  I can’t take credit for the “painting with light” idea during long-exposure photos - there are lots of really cool examples of the approach on Flickr.  We’ve just scratched the surface..;)

  6. Picture of Allan branchAllan branchJanuary 24, 2012

    Look me up next time you’re here!

  7. Picture of BoyinkBoyinkJanuary 24, 2012

    Thanks Allan - good chance of it since you’re in the south and close to a major highway..:)

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