He rolled over and looked at the clock: 3:30 AM.
He got up, and then started to nudge his family. “Come on. It’s time to go,” he said, half-whispering.
His wife, Chris, and son, Sean, were having none of it. After all, 99% of the people living in the Eastern Time Zone were still asleep at that very early hour.
But his five-year old daughter, Margaret, pulled herself up, and let out an epic yawn. She looked up and gave her Dad the “I’m ready” sign. Phil wasn’t going to make this crack of dawn trip alone.
And this wasn’t just any trip. It was a pilgrimage of sorts: A journey to see the sunrise at the top of Cadillac Mountain, where hundreds of people gather every morning to say they were some of the first in the United States of America to see the sunrise that day.
It’s a place where 9,000 years ago the early Wabanaki would gather. It’s the place where people like George Dorr, Charles Eliot and John D. Rockefeller fell a little deeper in love with this place of scenic grandeur. Today, families and adventurers, the incurably curious and yes, the insomniacs, find their way to the peak early enough to catch that first glimpse of the sun. There’s no other place in this country like it.