May 22

Congratulations to Jim Mandeville of Hobe Sound, Fla., who submitted this week’s top-rated image in our It’s A Snap travel photo contest.

Last June, Mandeville and his family were vacationing at Sanibel Island on the west coast of the Sunshine State, an area well-known for lightning storms. He was watching a movie when his college-aged daughter said, “That light show is going off.”

“Holy jeez! I literally jumped up, grabbed my tripod and threw it together,” he said. While setting up, Mandeville saw a man fishing. “It was low tide. He’d come in and bait, and walk back out and cast.”

“I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if a bolt came down and lit him up?’ ” Mandeville recalled.

He set his camera for a 14-second exposure and was able to capture the shot. “I got it!” he remembered saying. “I was talking to myself.”

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen such natural fireworks in the sky.”

Mandeville wanted to return to Sanibel Island with his family again this June, but was overruled. Regardless, he remembers the vacation spot’s “beautiful water, great fishing and phenomenal lightning shows.”


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