To the Editor: Reconsider your plans 

To the Editor: 

As a resident of Southwest Harbor and one who has used the Island Explorer service, I find it sad that this year there won’t be any runs to Southwest Harbor/Tremont or Northeast Harbor. 

While I understand that we still will be under COVID-19 conditions, I see no reason that all service to Southwest Harbor/Tremont and Northeast Harbor must be canceled or eliminated. Even offering limited service would be beneficial to the towns and businesses that have supported this service in the past and eliminate congestion at parking areas within the park and Bar Harbor or the visitor center (where it was completely filled to capacity several times last year). In addition, with cruise ships not coming to Bar Harborwhy does the service only take Bar Harbor into account? 

Southwest Harbor/Tremont has three campgrounds in addition to the park at Seawall. Last year, parking at all park areas along Route 102 and 102A was a nightmare during the day, and multiple vehicle accidents occurred. 

The CDC has relaxed its guidance as to sanitizing surfaces and does not feel that COVID-19 spreads as readily as initially believed. With spacing on the buses with open windows and ventilation plus masking and the hope of vaccines reaching a larger U.S. population, we should be OK to operate.  

With the change of park fees for the popular destinations, it would be beneficial to offer early access to park trailheads for locals to hike earlier and eliminate vehicle traffic. The sun is up earlier, it’s cooler and people would have the opportunity to hike then rather than in the heat of the day. 

Finally, as your name states, it is the Island Explorer not just Bar Harbor and the Park Loop. 

Island Explorer, please reconsider your plans for the 2021season. 


Jane Iverson  

Southwest Harbor  

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.