Last July, I traveled to Maine to volunteer at Hog Island Audubon Camp. I couldn’t wait to see Atlantic Puffins on one of the planned boat rides out to Eastern Egg Rock. Unfortunately, there was not enough room on the boat for most of the volunteers and so I didn’t get to go.
I left Hog Island without seeing the puffins. However, there was no way I was leaving Maine without seeing them. So after a trip to Acadia National Park, I headed back to the area and headed to New Harbor, Maine, to go on a puffin cruise with Hardy Boat Cruises.
Hardy Boat Cruises have seasonal puffin watch trips out to Eastern Egg Rock. The cost is 28 dollars for adults and 12 dollars for children under twelve years of age. The trip turned out great! There were National Audubon Project Puffin naturalists on board that provided the history of restoring puffins to Eastern Egg Rock after detailing how the puffins once disappeared due to the feather trade. The naturalists also helped with bird identification by continually pointing out any birds that flew by the boat or any birds that were in the water. They also pointed out marine mammals along the way.
The ride out to Eastern Egg Rock and back is approximately 1.5 hours. I recommend sitting on the top deck if the weather is good.
The weather was overcast when I went though the water was pretty calm. I captured the moment below.
The boat captain got quite close to Eastern Egg Rock! We all happily got to see many puffins both on the island and in the water. We were close enough to see (with binoculars) the puffins catching fish. The puffins were really neat to watch. The cruise was great fun and I am so glad I detoured back to the area to see the puffins.
I recommend Hardy Boat Cruises as a awesome way to see puffins! I can’t wait to return and take their trip to Mohegan Island one day and do some birding there.
Another plus about Hardy Boat Cruises is that their dock is right below a great place to have lobster before or after your cruise.