When did airlines become such a pain in the …

It must have been hard to live back in the days of the frontier, when you had to get everywhere with a horse or maybe a wagon. Now we can fly anywhere in the world in a matter of hours, but I think I’d rather be back in the horse and wagon days.

There aren’t many places in the world you can’t get to by commercial airlines anymore. Just about anywhere is only a few hours away – some more hours than others, of course. Even if where you want to go isn’t right where the big planes take you, you can usually find a bush pilot or something to take you the rest of the way.

I’ve often dreamed of hunting in Alaska, and that’s how it would be up there. Anywhere within horse distance of any of the populated areas is completely overrun with other people, so you have to charter a bush plane to get farther back in the backcountry where terrestrial travel makes it difficult, if not impossible, to reach.

But after my last flight, when I went down to visit my son at Basic Training in Georgia, I don’t know if I ever want to fly again. The airline we flew on used to be the best one, but now I think it’s the worst. Or at least close to the worst. My wife had miles to use, so she got a free flight, but what they don’t tell you is that the miles only apply to the ticket itself. Do you want to bring a bag? That’s extra. Carry-on? Charge for that, too. Oh, and the checked luggage weight limit is now 40 pounds, when all the other airlines are at 50 or even 60. And then you have to pay for the actual seat, and that’s not covered in the miles, either. Her free flight cost $450.

The thing is, they have us over a barrel, and they know it. I could probably drive to Alaska for a hunt, but if I want to hunt in Africa, driving would be problematic, to say the least.

I think I’ll just stick to hunting right here in Wyoming for now.