The early climbing stands had boomerang-shaped blades that wrapped around the back of the tree and easily slipped resulting in some accidents.
Today’s stands are very secure and attach to the tree with plastic or rubber covered aircraft cables or strong chains, with locking pins to hold everything in place.
Often, ratchet-tightening straps are added to further increase the grip and prevent slipping once the stand is in position.
These climbing stands comprise two pieces – a chair, and below it, a platform. They are designed to allow you to ‘climb’ the tree while you are standing on the tree stand itself.
To use them you secure both the chair and the platform around the tree first. Then you raise the upper chair and put your weight on it, then raise your legs which are attached to the platform, and then lock the lower platform against the tree with your weight, then repeat the process with the chair as you edge your way up the tree.
Because of the way you ‘inch’ your way up the tree, it is obviously only suitable for certain trees – the ones that have no limbs below the height you wish to hunt, and up to a certain thickness.
The trees also need to be relatively straight and not too thick so the securing strap can fit around the tree.
It is also not suitable for people who are nervous about heights or the very unfit.
The advantages are:
- You are very mobile and can carry your tree stand with you wherever you are hunting
- You can use it on any appropriate tree quickly
However, it is only suitable for certain types of trees and certain types of people.