How To Use A Climbing Tree Stand (8 Tips You Need To Learn)

Posted by Andy Ryan
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climbing stand

Most hunters agree that a tree stand is a luxury, but those same hunters all dream of having one if they don’t already. A tree stand is, at its most basic level, a platform attached to a tree that allows you to get off the ground and improve your vision of the surroundings with very little effort, allowing you to hunt where the game is the most prevalent. A tree stand can help you become a more effective hunter if you’re cautious, utilize the correct protective gear, and follow the directions that came with your gear. 

Here are a few suggestions on how to operate a climbing treestand carefully to increase your chances of success.

1. Assemble the Gear

How To Use A Climbing Tree Stand (8 Tips You Need To Learn) 1

How They Work

Climbing treestands have two sections. The top section is the seat, while the lower section is the platform.

To begin, the bowhunter ties both portions to the tree at an upward angle to account for the tree’s steady thinning as it grows taller.

The platforms level out when bowhunters climb to their selected height by angling the climbing parts at the base. Bowhunters must link the rope of their full-body safety harness to the tree above them before climbing. They move the cable and each segment upward as they ascend.

Once you’ve left the ground, never try to change your treestand straps or wires. If they need to be adjusted, get down to ground level.

How to Install

Tree stands are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, but they all serve the same purpose: to provide you with a high, covered shooting position. A well-placed tree stand will give you the edge you need no matter where you hunt whitetails, but a badly hung tree stand can wreck a season. Here are some of the most effective methods for installing a tree stand.

Make sure you have everything you’ll need to gear up your tree stand. You’ll need the following equipment:

  • Safety harnesses, straps, and ropes for safety.
  • Your bow or rifle
  • Once you’re on your stand, you’ll need a powerful rope to elevate your rifle or bow.

Tree stairs are short horizontal bars that extend from the tree and provide a foothold. Long poles with horizontal footholds protruding from the side are known as climbing sticks.

Safety straps are used to secure the stick to the tree’s trunk. When you’re in your stand, be sure you’re wearing a secure harness.

To attach to a trunk, permanent stands use straps, ropes, or chains. Other instruments, such as power drills and hammers, may be required to gear up a permanent stand. To secure your stand, you’ll also need a way to go up the tree. Tree steps, climbing sticks, and tree ladders are the most frequent tree-climbing gear.

Things to Keep in Mind

Before you go out, inspect the stand, straps, and chains for signs of wear and tear or missing pieces.

Practice with your tree stand and harness at ground level with a friend or family.

Understand how to utilize your harness appropriately. A full-body harness is recommended 

Waist belts or upper-body-only harnesses might result in serious injury or death in the event of a fall.

Make sure the tree you select is reasonably straight, doesn’t have any branches that are lower than where you planned to sit, and isn’t too wide or narrow.

2. Selecting the Best Climbing Stand

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There are just a few factors that truly vary between climbing stand models, thus there are only a few things to consider while choosing the correct climbing stand. Here’s something to think about: weight is an essential element. The lightest climbers we’ve seen weigh around 15 pounds, while the heaviest weigh 30 pounds or more. You should select a lighter model because a heavy one can be very difficult to install and use. Models with “just the basics” tend to be heavier, while high-end models tend to be lighter. Comfort is also an important consideration because sitting in a tree stand for hours on end can be unpleasant. Many climbing tree stands include straps for carrying them through the woods like a backpack, as well as a safety harness for when you’re up in the tree.

3. Selecting the Correct Tree

Choosing the right tree can have a significant impact on one’s ability to get off the ground and above the deer’s line of sight. Smooth bark allows your stand to move as your weight shifts. Look for gnarled, tough bark that your climber tree’s teeth can dig into securely when selecting a climber tree. And how broad it is and how much of that width it extends upward.

A tree that is wide at the bottom and becomes incredibly narrow as it climbs up can cause complications during the climbing process and will most likely prevent you from reaching an adequate hunting height.

A tree that does not lose much of its width as it grows taller is ideal. Don’t just choose any tree. Look for and select a tree that will provide you with more stability and security once you are off the ground.

When selecting the perfect tree to climb, consider the tree’s angle and whether or not it has any branches that you’ll need to cut out of the way on the way up.

4. Finding the Correct Treestand Angle

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The greater the angle, the less the margin for failure in a double lung strike. Shooting from a downward angle is more difficult than shooting from the ground since there is generally more foliage from the tree canopy to contend with, and it is rarely practiced.

When the stand is installed, the platform must have a very minimal “upward” angle for it to sit LEVEL after the required hunting height is reached.

Remember that the less overall tree diameter loss there is, the lower the beginning angle must be to adjust for platform drop.

Climbing back down and adjusting the platform angle or choosing another tree are the only alternatives when this happens. Both methods take time and only serve to alert games to the fact that they are being targeted.

5. Keeping the Top and Bottom Sections Secure

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For this purpose, most treestands come with a bungee cord or rope attached to both sections. We recommend obtaining a pair of these stabilizer straps if your climbing stand does not come with them before attempting to climb any tree.

Before climbing can begin, however, basic safety precautions must be followed to ensure a safe climb and descent. The first step is to ensure that the top and bottom sections of the treestand are connected. This will prevent the bottom section of the stand from colliding with the ground if it slips from your feet during the climbing procedure. (1)

6. Keeping Your Feet Secure While Standing

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Both feet should be connected to the bottom platform, with both sections of the climbing treestand secured to one another to prevent separation when you are climbing. In two ways, this will help with the climbing process.

Traction is necessary when ascending, standing, and descending the tree stand. Choose boots with a decent grip to avoid slipping and falling.

When it’s damp, everything becomes slippery, from the ladder of the tree stand to the dead leaves. Wearing the correct footwear is the best method to avoid a slip.

Your feet may need to be slid beneath a metal bar or stirrups, depending on the make and model of your tree stand. For a suggestion on where to set your feel while climbing, examine the owner’s manual for your specific stand.

7. Keeping Yourself Secure To The Tree

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Be sure you are properly secured to the tree. If the treestand breaks, this will save you from falling. Some bowhunters prefer to connect themselves to the tree AFTER they have reached the target height.

Wear an overall body safety harness and a safety tether. While climbing, just connect the tether to the tree over your head and fasten your harness. You can loosen the tether as you climb the tree and move it up with you, never detaching from the tree.

Don’t bring a lot of stuff up with you as you’re climbing into your stand, especially if it’s in the form of a backpack. Instead, tie your equipment to a rope and pull it all up once you’re safely in your seat.

Always remember to stay connected to the tree from the moment you leave the ground until you return to the ground at the end of your hunt.

8. Start Climbing

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You’ve got the ideal tree and the ideal stand. You’ve chosen a nice location, you’ve got your hand saw, and you’re ready to start climbing.

The first method is to use a safety strap to attach yourself to the tree. These straps follow you up the tree and tie around your waist.

After that, drag the bottom section upward with both feet. Then get up and raise the top piece of the stand until you can sit in it again. Repeat the technique until you achieve the desired height.

Draw the bow back to check that nothing is interfering with the drawing motion once all backpacks and gear are tied to the tree. 

Ascending the Tree

You do not need to reach the top of the tree, but you should be high enough to see through the undergrowth and generate a clear field of fire. Attach the tree strap and two sections of the stand to the tree at the base. To ensure the teeth dig into the bark, you’ll probably need to add some weight to the stand. Connect your harness to the strap and you’re good to go.

To begin, untie the tree strap and set it above your head before tightening it again. Place your feet in the bottom component of the stand’s stirrups and your torso through the top piece. This position will allow you to employ a climbing tree stand by sitting and standing.

Descending the Tree

If you’re already prepared to descend, follow the same procedure you used to climb a tree with a climbing tree stand. To begin, loosen and lower the tree strap to which your harness is fastened. After that, you’ll sit on the top piece and lower the bottom piece. Stand up and drop the top piece once it’s secure. This sequence will be repeated until you reach the bottom of the tree’s trunk. Once you’re close enough to the ground to safely exit, you can remove the tree strap.

How Does Climbing Stand Work?

Climbing stands are used by hunters to conveniently transfer the stand to different areas. They are not as permanent as ladder and hanging stands, but they allow a hunter to rapidly shift to a new tree. Climbing stands allow hunters who want to hunt from them to do so in areas where they won’t be able to keep a stand up for the entire season. Because branches limit the use of climbing stands, hunters can utilize ladder stands and hanging stands on trees with many branches at a lower height. The top section of a climbing treestand is the seat, while the lower section is the platform.


How Much Height?

First and foremost, the type of tree you want to hunt from is important. You’ll get plenty of natural coverings if you select a pine or cedar tree with low-hanging branches, and you’ll be able to hang your tree stand accordingly. All you have to do is ensure that there are enough shooting lanes where you expect the game to move through.

The higher you can set your tree stand in larger hardwoods with trees that may not have many low-hanging limbs for cover, the better. The standard is frequently 20 feet. This will get you high enough to be out of the direct line of sight for any deer in the vicinity, but not so high that a hunter will feel uncomfortable climbing to and safely entering the stand.

You’re limited by the structure of the tree if you’re using a climber. However, any significant knots or other irregularities in the tree’s trunk should be considered. (2)

Climbing vs Ladder Tree Stands

Climbing Tree Stands are easy to assemble. You may easily climb once the two-part system is set on the ground. There is a safe, secure, and silent cable system that effectively secures itself around the tree. Mesh or armrests provide comfort and security. the closed front system with armrests, seat cushions, and some even back cushions provides extra security while on the little platform. You can even take a snooze on top while being secure. 

Ladder stands are beneficial for a variety of reasons, and they may be the best hunting choice. Ladder stands are wonderful for private property, but if your state permits it, they can also be extremely useful on public property. You have the added benefit of The Jaw Safety System with ladder treestands, in addition to convenience of use and exceptional comfort. The Jaw Safety System keeps you securely attached to the ground.

Climbing Tree Stand vs. Hang-On Tree Stand

A climbing treestand is ideal for someone who enjoys hunting in multiple locations but does not have the funds to set up a treestand at each location. For mobile hunters, climbing treestands are ideal. Those who wish to hunt in public or private areas but don’t want to be confined to a single location. These are light-weighted and expand to let you climb over nubs and branches when climbing and descending the tree.

Hang-on Tree stands allow you to transition quickly from ascending to down. You can leave the stand at any time and use the sticks to descend. Once you’ve reached the desired height and position, simply wrap and tighten the stand according to the manual’s instructions, then open up the platform and lock yourself in place. Cheap — For the price of one climbing tree stand, you can get two of these. If you need to travel further, you can climb away from the platform in under a minute. 

When it comes to choosing between a hang-on or a climbing treestand, the answer is that they both have their purpose and function. The type of stand that best suits the type of hunting you perform is the one that should be chosen.

Is it Safe to Climb Treestands?

The most important factor for tree stands is safety. The most crucial aspect of tree stand safety is the use of a body harness. A single harness can keep the hunter safe, consisting of a belt around the hunter’s waist and a tree harness with a strap linking the two. 

Users of tree stands should inspect their stands regularly to verify that they are in good operating order. A hunter should avoid using a tree stand that is in bad condition. Checking the steps leading up to the stand for safety and stability will help you avoid falling.

(1) climbing procedure –
(2) knots –

Andy Ryan is the founder of ArcheryPower and has been in the archery industry for many years. He is an instructor and maintains a certification. His mission is helping more and more people each year with archery and bow hunting.

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