Don’t panic if Cadillac tickets are ‘sold out’

ACADIA NAT’L PARK — Last fall, when park officials piloted the system of timed-entry reservations for driving to the summit of Cadillac Mountain, they learned that most people made their reservations only a day or two in advance. 

So now, with reservations being required starting May 26, only 30 percent of the available reservations are being sold more than two days prior to the date requested. 

“We’re holding back 70 percent for a two-day advance sale,” said Acadia Management Assistant John Kelly. “So, people might look to get a reservation three or four days in advance and see that they’re not available. But if they go online two days in advance, all the tickets will be available for the following two days. 

Kelly said the 30/70 availability of reservations likely will be in effect until mid-to-late July.  

Timed entry reservations for driving up the Cadillac Mountain Summit Road are required between dawn and dusk. Reservations cost $6 per vehicle. That is in addition to the cost of the required park entrance pass. Reservations may be purchased online at 

Kelly said Monday that the 30 percent of reservations that are available more than two days in advance have been selling briskly but were not sold out.  

Cadillac Mountain reservations will be required through Oct. 19 for private vehicles. Reservations may be purchased up to 90 days in advance. 

“We expect all tickets for sunrise to be sold,” he said.  

Sunset also is a popular time for people to visit the mountain summit. 

No reservation? Call a cab 

The reservation system is being implemented to eliminate vehicle gridlock at the summit. At times in recent years, there have been more than twice as many drivers looking for a place to park as there are parking spaces. 

“The reservation system is not to keep people from going up; it’s to control vehicles,” Kelly said. “So, any taxi or ride-sharing service that is not going to be taking up a parking space, but just dropping off or picking up people, can drive to the summit.  

They can’t linger; they can’t wait around and solicit from there. They have to have a pre-arranged customer to either pick up or drop off.” 

One local taxi service owner has a van that will be running shuttles on an hourly schedule between Reel Pizza, located across from the Village Green in Bar Harbor, and the Cadillac summit starting Monday, May 24. 

Called the Cadillac Mountain Express, it will run every day starting at 8 a.m. The last pickup from the Cadillac summit will be at 2:30 p.m. The cost is $11 per person one way. 

Tickets may be purchased online only at All passengers also must have an Acadia entrance pass. 

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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