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OK. Now the first key to success with hunting with our tree stand is we have to find a place to put it where the animals are. And that’s why we have a trail camera. Let’s go.

All right. So if any animal’s been walking around in the area in this field, we’ll find out with this card. We definitely have animals here. This is going to be the spot to set up our tree stand.

But this is only the first key to having a successful hunt. Do you know what the others are?

All right. Now the second key is properly setting your stand. And this is a biggie. Actually, hold this for me. Now when we assembled the stand, we read through the manufacturer’s instructions. Thank you. And of course, we brought them with us to help with setup.

Plus, we inspected the stand to make sure everything’s in top shape. And we do that every time before we use it. And I’m carrying with me a communication device that I know works right here where I’m hunting. And of course, for safety, you’re here—the buddy system. All right. Let’s go.

So whether you’re hunting or you’re hanging your stands, it’s important to write down your details with someone who expects you to come home.


Ah, homemade stand. Look. You’re better off using the real deal because they meet approved safety standards. Let’s go.

OK. So we know that this is a hot spot. But what tree do we pick? We’ve got a crooked one. Well, we have a dead one. And this one is a little viny. And this one has got loose bark.


Oh, yeah. You’re right. It’s a nice, straight one. It’s within the size limits of the stand that we’re using. Plus it’s downwind of the trails. This is good.

So it’s simple physics, right? You can’t prevent gravity from pulling you down to the ground when you fall. But you can prevent your body from slamming into the ground. And it’s called the fall-arrest system. And it has to be rated to your hunting weight, which is you and all of your gear. And it needs to be inspected each time before you use it.


All right. So here’s the big question. How do we get from down here to all the way up there so that we can safely hang our stand?


Uh, no. Nailing in steps like this is not a good idea. First, it damages the tree. And secondly—mmm—they can pull out while you’re climbing. Try again. No. OK. Screwing in steps like this is not a good idea. First, it damages the tree. Secondly, there is the potential that they can pull out. So try again.

So climbing naturally is not a good idea because you’re risking life and limb. So try again.


That’s right. You want something that’s secure and won’t damage the tree. And that is why I’m using this strap-on climbing system. And of course, for safety, well, you’re here. But I’m going to take this lineman’s belt and wrap it around the tree to prevent myself from falling while climbing. And whatever type, use the manufacturer’s instructions. Use your buddy system. Carry your communication device. And attach your fall-arrest system solidly to the tree before installing your climbing system and stand. Then install your stand below the top of your climbing system.

All right. So what is your best guess? When are you the most vulnerable to the bone-crushing effects of gravity up here? Climbing up or down, getting on or off your stand, shooting from the stand, preparing to hunt or leave. Actually, you’d be right no matter which one you chose because you’re vulnerable to falling during every single one of them if your fall-arrest system is not attached.

So then, here’s the question. How do you get safely in and out of your stand? Whether hanging stands or hunting, climbing up or down, remain attached to the tree with your lineman’s belt. To get past your stand, attach your tether to the tree belt placed above the stand before detaching your lineman’s belt.

Once you’re in the stand, readjust the tree belt so there’s no slack in your tether when you’re sitting. After hanging your stand, some fall-arrest systems can be installed that allow you to remain attached to your tether from the time you leave the ground until you return. No matter which system you choose, use three-point climbing.




This is our gear elevator. With that, I think we’re all ready for a hunt tomorrow.

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