Whether hunting with a bow or firearm, utilizing a portable tree stand is a popular way to gain an elevated view of approaching game and ensure your scent is not easily detected down below. However, tree stands can result in serious injury without preparation, the appropriate tree stand accessories and proper installation procedures. Add the essential hunting accessories and you’re ready for a good hunt.
Climbing tree stands allow for superior mobility while searching for the optimal spot to blend in and wait. No matter what portable tree stand you choose – even if you make your own – there are safety considerations to remember and best practices to follow. Use these tips the next time you venture out:
- Inspect your gear. Before you even leave home, look over all of your equipment and hunting accessories. Check your safety harness and straps for fray or other defects. Make sure the pieces of your stand are in working order. Double check your supply list so you don’t forget to pack any essential tools.
- Find the right tree. Locating an ideal tree may take a while unless you’ve previously scouted the area. Trees have to be sturdy enough to support both you and the platform. Live, healthy trees with a sizeable circumference are the goal. Tall and sturdy with no lower branches or loose bark are other preferred features. Some stand manufacturers set restrictions or size specifications. Confirm the area you’re in allows the type of system and accessories you are using. Screw-in styles or steps are frequently not permitted in order to protect trees from permanent damage.
- Lock your safety harness to the trunk. Getting your stand set up and safely secured can take a little while. Once you have the top and bottom parts of the stand ready to make the climb, tether your body harness to the trunk with a moveable ratchet strap secured just above the top of the stand. This securement will serve as backup if the stand falls. In addition, a safety strap from your harness to the tree takes some weight and pressure off the stand itself.
- Don’t rush the climb. Step onto the bottom part of your stand, which should already be attached to the tree. Once in the stand, you should be able to reposition the tree strap about 12” up the tree and tighten it back onto the tree. Grab the top part of your stand and move it upward, then use your feet to grab the bottom portion of the stand and lift that up, as well. Repeat this process a number of times until you feel you have a good overview of your area that’s out of a target’s line of sight, yet within your desired shooting distance. Descend the tree by simply reversing these instructions. Never carry your firearm or bow while climbing. Keep these items on the ground, perhaps in a bag, tethered to the top of the tree stand with a strap or a rope that you can pull up to you once you’ve secured your tree stand to where you plan to perch during the hunt.
- Check the local weather forecast. Know what conditions to expect. Temperature and precipitation affect how readily you can reach your tree stand, and influence the ability to see, hear and track your prey. Also, dress appropriately. Especially in high altitudes, a warm day can turn into a freezing cold night. If necessary, carry a blanket to bunker down with.
Keep these safety tips in mind to help guarantee a successful and injury-free harvest season. US Cargo Control carries a variety of hunting accessories such as camo blankets and camo safety straps with choices of hooks and ratchets for your unique needs. Call us anytime with questions: 888-719-4020.