Locavore Blog: Five Bowhunting and Tree Stand Safety Tips

IMG_6871 (267x400)I’ll be hunting from two, possibly three, tree stand locations on our property this October. Based on Bryce Towsley’s advice on scent control, I know I need to switch locations throughout the season so the scent has a chance to neutralize. In fact, he mentioned that the first day you hunt in a tree stand is usually the most successful (due to scent control, not necessarily buck advantage).

Three locations are ready for bow season, but one is only accessible by the tippy canoe, so that one I’m not super fond of trying to get to. The two I’m definitely planning to use are walkable and the tree stands are ready to go. One is a two man ladder stand:

The stand before we moved it to its location.

The stand before we moved it to its location.

The other one is a single man stand. No matter which one I end up in this fall, I will be practicing bowhunting and tree stand safety. One thing I want to note is that in all the literature I’ve read, while it’s not necessary to use a new tree stand, it is important to check permanent tree stands every year before hunting season begins. Make sure to replace worn or rotten lumber.

Five Bowhunting and Tree Stand Safety Tips:

  1. Select a good tree for your location. Make sure the tree is healthy and strong enough to sustain the weight of both the tree stand and you. Rough-barked trees like oak are a good choice. Make sure that the tree is not rotten and also does not have dead limbs.
  2. Always wear a safety harness. Don’t use a waist belt or rope as a substitute. And always secure yourself to the tree before your foot leaves the ground. A full body safety harness could save your life. Using a haul line for your bow, arrows, and other equipment enables you to safely climb the tree and strap in before hauling up your gear.

    Close up of the HSS-Contour safety harness.

    Close up of the Hunter Safety System HSS-Contour safety harness.

  3. Climb consciously. Wear non-skid boots to avoid slipping. Don’t put all your weight on a single branch. Make sure to keep one hand and one foot on a secure place before reaching for the next. Climb higher than the stand and step down onto it. (Climbing up could dislodge it.)
  4. Don’t wear a ring (or other jewelry) when hunting. Rings can catch on tree stands and equipment.
  5. Watch your broadheads. Keep your broadheads covered in a quiver until you’re ready to shoot. Don’t forget to remove the practice broadhead from the arrows you plan to hunt with. While it was perfect for practicing, that broadhead is now significantly duller than the others and the last thing you want is to hunt with a dull broadhead.

Countdown to deer season is on! (Can you tell I’m getting excited?)

Stay Safe This Season With This Fantastic, Comfortable Harness!