Sunrise from Cadillac Mountain - Acadia National Park, Maine

For early birds, or those willing to get up in the wee hours of the morning, experiencing the sunrise on Cadillac Mountain is a breathtaking way to start your day. I personally don't mind getting up at dark o-thirty - especially if I know there will be a reward for my efforts. The 1500 feet elevation at the summit means this is the first place in the US to see the sunrise from October through March. During the spring and summer months, it's not quite the first place in the US to see the sunrise, but we're calling it "close enough".

Our experience started the day before the actual sunrise, after we gorged ourselves with popovers from the Jordan Pond House. I like to "scope things out beforehand" when it comes to getting to a specific venue for a "special event" - so we made a quick trip up to Cadillac Mountain to see how long it would take, what the parking situation looked like and how much space there was up at the top for (of course) photographs.

[Yes, I am highly motivated by what I can capture with my camera.]

I'm glad we took the drive up because I was able to determine the best place to park and snapped a quick iPhone photo of Bar Harbor down below:
View of Bar Harbor
The islands in Frenchman Bay are called the Porcupines - there is Sheep Porcupine, Bald Porcupine and Long Porcupine Islands (maybe there are more - that's all I could find online).

With the next day's sunrise time of 4:53, we planned to leave the house by 3:45. This would give us enough time to get there without being rushed. I caucused the group for participation in this adventure and got one "definite" (my sister, Teresa) and two "maybes" (Teresa's son and my daughter). I expected that only Teresa would be accompanying me, but the next morning as I stumbled into the main house, all three were ready to go.

We arrived to the summit around 4:35, as dusk was starting to break.
Breaking Dawn #maine #cadillacmountain

It was amazing how many people were there. It wasn't as crowded as the afternoon before, but there were more people there than I would have guessed.

Crazy Enough to get up Super Early with Me this morning! #maine #mountdesertisland

Right on time, the sun started to emerge:
Sun Peeking Through

Higher and higher...
Risen!

A sunrise is such a finite event - once the sun was up, people got in their cars and started to leave. I prefer to stick around and enjoy it some more - like this couple who headed down the trail.
Greet the Day

The best light is yet to come.
Great Way to Start the 4th

Misty Trance

Yeah, that's me - always pointing the camera at something!
I'm always trying to get the shot - Taken by My Sister #cadillacmountain #sunrise #maine #acadia

A perfect way to start the day.

Diane Cayton-Hakey  – (July 23, 2013 at 6:15 PM)  

Oh my gosh it's gorgeous!! But tell me... did you hike up there?? Or is there some kind of service/vehicle that takes you up there? I couldn't take the hike so if it's a hike I can't put it on my bucket list. xox

shirley  – (July 24, 2013 at 12:54 PM)  

@Diane - you can drive up the mountain in your personal car! Way easier than hiking! Put it on your bucket list for sure!

Kara  – (July 24, 2013 at 1:04 PM)  

Oh my goodness that is so beautiful. I watch the sunrise almost every morning over the Atlantic. But, one day I would love to climb up and see it from where you were. That is stunning. I love the picture of you with your camera. It seems as if us picture takers never have a picture that we're in.

acreativeharbor.com  – (July 24, 2013 at 3:34 PM)  

Wow! Gotta love nature ~ what a gift your photography is ~ Wonderful!

Lisa Gordon  – (July 28, 2013 at 10:04 AM)  

This was most definitely worth getting up for, Shirley.
These are just beautiful.
Happy Sunday to you!

Anita Johnson  – (July 29, 2013 at 7:01 AM)  

These are just beautiful...love the shot with you in it.

Jocelyne  – (August 13, 2013 at 10:53 PM)  

Wonderfully beautiful ! These are great photos :)

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