Look back in anger........
I started stalking slightly over 20 years ago. The 6x42 had just knocked the 4x32 off it's perch as the premier stalkers scope. Binos were a straight choice between 7x42 SLCs or 7x42BGATs. The vast majority of rifles were blued wood and the vast majority of them were designed to be walked with. Twin sticks were used by a few bearded types from the St Herberts, the rest of us used single sticks. Lots of stalking = muffs or deafness.
There weren't very many of us. Our publications were delivered by subscription. People who wrote about stalking had a lot of experience in the field. Most writing was about deer and stalking not firearms. There was very little knowledge available about ballistics, loading etc unless you bought it in paper.
With the exception of counties well known for trophies most stalking was free or for a portion of the venison. There was a lot of land available. For the most part a stalker enquiring about shooting rights would tip his hat and walk on if it was already taken. Placing high seats on boundaries was frowned upon. Venison prices from gamedealers was cheap. There were a few but relatively well known people taking clients out and very few people thought stalking owed them a living. Hind stalking was free/very cheap. Most ordinary people thought stalking was in Scotland. Hunting was something done by people in red coats with hounds. A gun was a person with a side by side on a peg and a shooter used in bank jobs.
There were fewer deer but you could stalk them undisturbed by walkers, gamekeepers had legal powers.
Rose tinted specs off - of course a lot of this whinging is driven by the fact that I've lost a lot of stalking but in truth I am sick of the type of stalker that is increasingly the case nowadays. Pushy, ill mannered, interested in numbers above all else, land aquired at all costs regardless of incumbents and endlessly talking complete crap about equipment as well as boasting about ridiculous long range shots.
Curmudgeonly signing off.