Honolulu, Hawaii (CNN) – As the sun rises in Honolulu, the White House Press Corps readies for another day in pursuit of the vacationing Commander in Chief.
Despite more than 40 journalists, photographers, and engineers being on site, getting a glimpse of the president over the last week has proved elusive.
"I've been in the TV press pool, and before his New Year's Eve outing with the family, we hadn't laid eyes on him in 6 days," said CNN Photojournalist Mark Walz, who's been covering the White House since 1988.
The neighborhood around Obama's rental home is blocked off on three sides–with Secret Service agents, Honolulu Police and the Coast Guard making sure no one gets too close.
"It's always a cat and mouse game," Walz added. "We want to get video of the president, and the White House wants to give him privacy."
Asked about the lack of access over the last week, White House spokesman Eric Schultz said "the President is enjoying two weeks of private vacation with his family in Hawaii, where he was born and raised."
Key word? "Private."
They point out that the first few days of the trip the press did see the President arrive, attend a basketball game, play golf and visit troops on Christmas Day.