Friday, September 04, 2009

Choosing The Right Treestand… (Series Conclusion)

© By Othmar Vohringer

Keeping you treestands in good shape:

How safe treestand hunting is depends not only on wearing a safety harness and using a quality stand but also on the maintenance of the stand. It all starts by carefully reading, understanding and following the owners and operation manual accompanying each treestand. Before each use and after the hunting season ends inspect your stands for wear and tear, especially the attachment belts, buckles, chains and cable. If you see a crack in the frame have it fixed by a manufacturer recommended professional. Worn parts should always be replaced with factory recommended parts. After the hunting season closes wash and repaint the stands and lubricate all the joints and moving parts; this will go a long way to avoid creaking and popping noises. Store the treestands in a dry place such as the garage or garden shed until next season. Purchasing a treestand is an investment that can greatly enhance your deer hunting success so keep it in good working order and you will get many years of use from one of the greatest inventions in deer hunting.


Each of the different stand models I described in the previous posts has its advantages and disadvantages. In my opinion, a serious treestand hunter should own at least several hang-on stands, a climbing treestand and a ladder stand. This stand arsenal permits the hunter to pre-select several stand sites and quickly change locations from one stand to the next without any delay to wherever the deer action is. Owning several different stand models gives you the opportunity to use stands in a wide variety of situations and that often will make all the difference you need to be in the game.

No matter what stand model or brand you choose safety is of paramount concern. Each time a human leaves terra firma he or she is in danger of risking life and limb. Unlike birds we have no wings that take us safely back to earth from lofty heights. Treestand manufactures supply a safety harness with each treestand and they should be worn each time we hunt from a stand. Most of these safety harnesses also function as a lineman climbing belt or can be easily converted to one.

While most hunters these days wear a safety device once they are in the treestand, many hunters fail to realize that Falls from stands or climbing to and from one account for seventy-five percent of all hunting related accidents. From that figure more than eighty percent of accidents occur when climbing to and from your treestand. The rest of the accidents occur by careless use of the stand, malfunction and disrepair of the stand, ladders or safety equipment. By remembering a few simple common sense safety rules accidents with treestands can be greatly limited.

Treestand theft prevention:

It is an unfortunate fact of life that we share this planet with thieves and hunting is not excluded from it. Each year hunters head to their stands in anticipation of a good hunt only to realize that the stand has gone. There are several ways I have found that work really well in securing your stand against theft. One way is to never leave a stand in the woods. If it’s practical take the stand down after hunting. However, I am well aware from experience that it is not always practical to remove the stand after each hunt.

First no matter what color the stand is I’ll repaint them with a camouflage pattern resembling ASAT camouflage. This makes the stand next to invisible not only to deer but just as important to other hunters too. I observed hunters walking right under my stand and never notice anything. Heck, there have been times, before GPS, when I scratched my head looking in the treetops for my own stand. In addition I lock all my hang-on and ladder stands with a good quality bicycle chain to three. Ladder stands are not a big worry for me because I only set them up in the really thick stuff where most hunters wouldn’t dream to go.

If you use your ladder stand in the more open areas chain the stand to the tree with up to three heavy-duty steel chains and sturdy quality padlocks. The goal here is to make it as hard as possible for a treestand thief. The harder they have to work to get what they want the less likely it is that your stand will be stolen.

Once I installed my hang-on stands I remove the climbing sticks. Again I want to make it as hard as possible for a crook to access my stand. Somehow I don’t think that a thief would climb up a tree or go home to get a ladder just to steal my stand. It only takes me a few minutes to set up my climbing sticks and be ready to hunt, so it is not a big deal for me to take them down after each hunt and transport the sticks in and out of the woods.

Related articles:

Treestand Hunting Safety Tips

Choosing The Right Treestand for The Perfect Ambush (intro)
Choosing The Right Treestand…Hang-on-stands
Choosing The Right Treestand…Climbing Stands
Choosing The Right Treestand…Ladder stands
Choosing The Right Treestand…Tripod Stands
Othmar Vohringer Outdoors

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