A HUNTING TREE STAND is a must if you want to hide yourself from your prey. Being the quintessential component of proper hunting gear, tree stands are usually used for hunting whitetail deer as deer rarely looks up for predators.
Any movement of the hunter can catch the deer’s eye if you draw the bow at ground but at a tree stand you are above the deer’s line of sight which prevents a spooking game. The elevation also prevents the deer from smelling you because they have amazing sense of smell.
A tree stand offers you an edge while you sit by the tree. You get the sheer opportunity of watching for your prey over the bush and grass which may otherwise hinder your view. With climbing tree stands, you also get the perfect standing position in tree spots quite conveniently.
Tree stands are either OPEN OR ENCLOSED platforms that are used by hunters. These platforms are secured to trees to elevate the hunter and provide him a better vantage point and commanding view of the area. Investing in a quality tree stand is pivotal for having a great hunting experience.
Types of Tree Stands
Tree stands are secured to trees and hold up the hunter as it provides him a superior edge of better vantage position. When you visit the archery store, or buying from amazon, you will find there are three basic types of tree stands. Hang on/lock-on stands, climbers and ladder stand.
Hang on Tree Stand
Being an affordable option, they are much easy to set up and move. They are quite portable while hunting on public land or changing patterns while hunting. These versatile tree stands easily secure to trees with a chain or ratchet strap. You may need 3 or 4 climbing sticks to reach 15 to 20 feet high as each climbing stick is almost 30 inches long.
Climbing Tree Stand
This is a two-piece tree stand. Its upper piece is the seat while the lower one is the platform. While using this stand, you don’t need a ladder or steps rather you use the stand itself to climb the tree. While using climber, the selection of the tree is of utmost importance. You need to select a straight tree; free of branches otherwise the branches may interfere with the climber when it slides up the tree.
Climbing tree stands are equipped with backpack straps and weigh between 12 – 30 pounds. They are easy to carry along in the woods and are ideal for public land hunting too.
Ladder Tree Stand
This all in one package includes a seat, platform as well as a ladder. Though they are much secure and comfortable, you can’t carry it alone and require the help of others for setup. Ladder tree stands offer a roomy platform and are the KING OF COMFORT.
The type of tree stands you select depends on your personal preference as well as the area where you are planning to hunt. You may consult the archery experts at stores to help you in its selection. Hanging stands are permanent as compared to climbing stands but climbing stands have an edge of mobility as compared to them.
Climbing tree stands are also much safer as compared to the small platforms tied with cables and bolts around the tree. You can climb up easily while securing yourself comfortably within the stand.
How to Climb the Tree Stand? 6 Easy Steps!
After reaching your favorite hunting spot, you gain a bird’s eye view with your stand. Once your stand is positioned correctly, you should climb the tree with the “sit & climb” method. Though it’s a little slow, but it’s quite safe and effective.
- First of all dig the top as well as the bottom of the stand in the tree.
- It must be high enough so you are above the deer’s line of sight and low enough so you can easily climb and make a sitting position.
- Now stand towards the bottom of the tree stand and lock it in its place by pushing it a bit upwards.
- Get in the seat and lift it from the tree while using your feet and pull it under you.
- Get up and push the unit upward in a way that must be high enough so your feet should comfortably reach the bottom of the stand once you sit.
- Cut any branches coming your way so you can try multiple angles.
To get down the tree, you simply need to reverse the series of work you did earlier. Simply lower the standing platform and stay on it while you lower the sitting platform.
How to hang the Tree Stand? 8 Easy Steps!
The technique is different for different models. But find the perfect stance and then find a good spot with the perfect tree for hanging the stand accordingly.
- Wear the safety harness.
- An important piece of equipment you need to carry here is a lineman’s belt. Because most of the accidents take place when you are hanging the tree stand or you are going up and down and the lineman’s belt will keep you attached to the tree instead of falling down.
- Take a lifeline belt and tie its one end to the stand and the other end to your safety harness. Before you leave the ground, hook up your lineman’s belt to the tree as you can use both your hands to climb up the tree once you set back in your safety harness.
- Make steps by tying the strap around the portable ladder section usually known as climbing sticks and then pull it down to check if it’s fixed well to avoid sudden jerks.
- You should keep a hold of all these sticks and keep some distance between them; you shouldn’t pile the sticks on top of each other. Another important point to consider is that if the tree you selected has small branches, you better cut them off otherwise it might be stuck in your bag pack or clothes while you make your way up.
- Once you fix all the steps and reach your desired distance, fix some hooks in the tree ( which will hold the stand), then come down and tie a section of your rope to your tree stand, again climb up the tree and pull the lifeline to pull the stand up.
- Release your stand from the lifeline and then hang your tree stand on the hooks and tie with rope to make sure it fixed properly.
- Take a ratchet strap and fix it almost 1 to 2 feet above your stand on the tree and connect your lifeline belt to it (which was previously connected to your stand). This will keep you connected with the tree in case your slip away from the stand. Always keep extra pull up ropes with you in your pocket in case you need to pull things up from the ground.
Once you hang, take your spot and sit back while making yourself comfortable. If your stand features adjustable foam padded seats with backrests, it gives you plenty of cushioned support while you wait for your next trophy.
Some tree stands even have the option of footrests as well as padded sling seats and armrests. Many bow hunting tree stands also feature built-in gun rests for keeping your firearm secure and steady.
How High should be a Tree Stand for Bow hunting?
Well, it depends from situation to situation and on your comfort range. What matters here is the hunter’s tolerance of height as well as the tree you have selected and also where your tree stand fits comfortably. So the tree is going to tell you the best height for the tree stand.
People usually associate height with accuracy. Many people have even gone 25 feet high to keep themselves away from deer’s sight but the upper you go, the more tree stems you’ll face and the kill zone on the deer starts to shrink. It’s not good to fix your tree stand too high as the goal here is to be above the deer’s line of sight, so going further won’t make any difference. Similarly, if you hang your tree stand lower than the average height; you must lay greater emphasis on your camouflage as your prey may detect you.
There is no fixed height which all bow hunters follow but as a general rule, Bowhunters hang tree stands usually 18 – 22 feet up from the tree to get a quick and clean kill. If you find less cover you should hang your tree stand higher but it’s better to use a cover to conceal your movements.
Get comfortable and be safe!