First, I want to thank God for the experience and good fortune that I was able to experience with my daughter in the great state of Alaska. There is nothing that can compare to closeness that develops between a father and a now 15 year old daughter, who, by the way, turned 15 on this trip. You will have to forgive me if this goes too long but I hope that you enjoy this limited recreation of events that transpired but I can assure you that I donít possess the words to describe the beauty or the emotions that were experienced by us. Second, many thanks need to go to the members of Outdoors forum that made this trip possible and without their help the success would not have come to a reality.
Our adventure began on 6/4/10 with a 6am fight from Jacksonville NC to Atlanta then a 1 Ĺ hour delay before the next leg to Portland. The next leg required switching from Delta to Alaskan airlines with an additional 1 Ĺ hour delay which really was welcome to allow the stretching of legs as well as the back. We arrived at 3:20 pm local time. The HORROR of every hunter began! We stood there watching the carousel continually spin to a point of being empty and none of our bags were there. Going to the help desk turned into a rise in the blood pressure that would have had me on medication, and Iím still not sure why they call it the help desk. They couldnít locate our bags and all I could be told was that they should be on the on the last flight of the evening that was something like 10pm. Oh, I forgot to share one tidbit of info that is every travelers nightmare. Alaskan airlines, as well as many others Iím sure, allowed a 350 lbs guy to buy only one ticket thus taking up not only his entire seat, but half of my poor daughters as well, who like a championed grinned and bared it. I really wish they would come up with a regulation requiring people to pass through something like the carry-on baggage rack, that you must fit in or buy an additional ticket.
We had a little shopping to do for some last minute items at Sportmanís Warehouse. Besides, we donít have anything like that where I live and Iím like a kid in a candy store and can always find something that I canít live without. So having procured a few things it was off to my storage unit that I rented last year. I had crunched the numbers and it was way cheaper to get a temperature controlled unit than paying for the excess baggage and weight for every trip to Alaska. As we completed that I get the phone call tell me that they have 2 of our bags but the other 3 were still in airline limbo. I had a room reserved at the North Star Inn on Elmendorf AFB. Itís been a long day and we waited for 2 Ĺ hours for the bags to get to the room just after midnight.
The next morning Iím informed the remaining bags will be on the 10:30am flight. I canít believe the issues, Alaskan is blaming Delta and Delta is blaming Alaskan for the foul ups. I learn that in the realm of flying that whoever is the last carrier that you fly with is the responsible party, just a small bit of info to future traveling hunters. Thank goodness, so with that good news it was off to Ihop for some pancakes. We get to the airport to retrieve the bags to learn that only 2 are there and 1 is still missing, luckily itís the fishing poles that wonít be needed till the second part of our trip. We need to get back to the storage unit to do some final sorting and make arrangements to meet 6XLeech and his daughter back at airport so we can drop off the rental car. On the way back to the airport, I get another call telling me that my fishing poles have arrived, Fantastic! We get there pick up the poles and I meet Dwight, aka 6XLeech, and his daughter Megan for the first time. This is a prime example of why itís a great idea to get to where you are going a day or two ahead of time. Between the 4 of us, our gear fills the back of his pickup and itís off to Homer. We made the decision to stop at Rabbit creek to make sure that all the rifles were still on a good zero. Everyone shot well and I would have to say any bear with in 200 yards has a good chance of ending up in the freezer. Getting more acquainted along the way and enjoying the scenery along the way time passes quickly and itís like old friends getting back together. We saw a couple of moose along the way and also take time to stop at Anchor Point to watch and see how a few fishermen are doing. We got into Homer about 7:30pm and stop by Homer Ocean Charters to say hi and check in with them and get our bearings. Itís back to check in to the hotel, ďA Fishermanís ResortĒ, that has great large spacious rooms. With hunger pains in our bellies we decide that a good meal is in order so dinner at the ďLands EndĒ, with waterfront dining that is 4 star and a million dollar view to boot. After dinner itís back to the room for organizing and get to bed at 11pm and alarms set for 6am.