New Trip Reports: Hawaii & Nunavut
Dominique Brugiere might well be the first man to see a Hawaiian Monk Seal and a Narwhal in the same month!
Hawaiian Monk Seals, 2014: Dominque Brugiere’s account of 11 days looking for Monk Seals.
Nunavut Cruise, 2014: Dominque Brugiere, 13 days & 10 or so species including Polar Bear, Bearded, Ringed and Harp Seals and Walrus, Musk Ox , Narwhal and Bowhead Whales.
FWIW, they often haul out near the Kilauea Lighthouse on Kauai. Just before the gates to go into the lighthouse proper there is a pull off with room for 5-6 cars. The rocks below are very isolated from humans. A buddy saw two in November and I saw one in May.
There were none in late August, and a park ranger said they are present only about once a week. However, the refuge is now 70% reliable for spinner dolphins (a pod hangs out during the day on the western side).
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Monk seals are currently easier to see on Kauai than elsewhere. The two best locations are Hilton Beach (the ones from nearby Poipu Beach have apparently moved there due to overcrowding) and the beach near the end of the road at Na Pali Coast. Also, Holo-holo charters see them on 80% of tours to Niihau Island, and you can snorkel with them there.