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Treestand Safety Month | Hunting Your Stands This Year Safely and Successfully

Treestand Safety 101: Tips to Hunt Treestands Successfully

Hunting out of treestands is one of the most popular ways to deer hunt across the U.S. There’s all kind of treestands, ranging from climbing stands to hang-on stands, and ladder stands of all sorts. The most important part of hunting from a treestand though is safety, above all else. The last thing you want to happen is to have an accident because of improper treestand use. Today, we’re going to talk a little bit about treestand safety, and the different safety precautions you can take to ensure a successful trip up a tree and back down every time.

Hanging Stands

Some of the most common ways to fall from a treestand are not while you’re hunting, but when you’re hanging a stand. Hanging stands can no doubt be more dangerous than hunting from them. When hanging treestands, a lot of time hunters are trying to do it quickly, and for various reasons, it can create opportunities to fall out of the tree if you aren’t using safety precautions. Whether you want to get in and out fast or are in a rush because you’ve got to hang multiple stands in a day, a lot of time you are trying to do it quick. A major tool you should be using is a safety harness and lineman’s belt. A lineman’s belt connects to your safety harness at your waist, goes around the tree and then connects to the other side of your waist. This allows you to lean back and use both hands while hanging your sticks and stand. You simply slide the lineman’s belt up the tree as you get higher, hang a set of sticks, slide it up the tree and repeat until you get to your stand. You never have to worry about holding on to the tree with one hand and doing the rest with the other. We’ve probably all been there, trying to prop up a stand against a branch or your leg or something else. Spend the small amount of money and make sure you have a good hunting safety harness and linemen’s belt, it can and will save you from falling while hanging a stand.

Hunting

Every time you hunt from a treestand, wearing a safety harness shouldn’t even be a question to you. There are so many great hunting safety harnesses out there now a days, and you can get light, comfortable ones that you barely notice. If you’re not wearing a safety harness every single time you get into a stand, you should change that right now.  

And to take things to the next level, once you have a stand all set, there are products out there that allow you to be clipped in from the ground up. Hawk Treestand’s makes one of the best out there, the safety line. A safety line goes around the tree above where your stand is and has a thick rope that goes all the way to the ground and you tie it off at the base of the tree. It then has prussic knots where you clip in to. As you climb your stand, you slide up the prussic knot which you’re clipped in to, therefore keeping you attached at all times. Should you slip and fall climbing up the tree or into your stand, the prussic knot will cinch and keep you from falling to the ground. Once again, every stand that you have set and ready for the season would highly benefit from you having a safety line with each setup.

Treestand Safety Conclusion  

At the end of the day, deer hunting is something that most of us love to do, and it’s fun for us. We should do everything we can in our power to make sure that when you head out for a hunt from a treestand, that you’ll return safe. People have become seriously injured or even worse because of an accident from a treestand. Taking the necessary steps to prevent this is crucial. Whether it be a safety harness, lineman’s belt, safety line, taking more time when hanging a stand, etc. there are multiple things you can do to ensure your safety when either hanging or hunting from a treestand. Deer hunting is awesome, and we want to be able to experience it for as long as possible. Don’t let an accident take that away from you.  

The Advantages Of The Hawk Helium Kickback Tree Stand and Helium Climbing Sticks

The Hawk Helium Kickback Tree Stand and Helium Climbing Sticks

Hunting season might seem like a long way off right now, but you know as well as we do that it will be here before we know it. That means it’s never too early to start planning your hunting strategies or tree stand locations. If you’re lucky enough to hunt private land where you can hang several tree stands ahead of time, you’re probably always on the lookout for new tree stands. The Helium™ Kickback tree stand by Hawk Tree Stands is a great hang on stand to add to your collection, and the associated Helium Climbing Sticks are top notch too. Check out the features and advantages of these two products and see how they could fit into your hunting season plans.

Why Try This Hang On Tree Stand and Sticks?

Although other types of tree stands work great for different scenarios, it’s tough to beat hang on stands when it comes to private property or mobile hunting. You can easily hang a few stands in different locations to allow for hunting in different conditions. For example, you could hang a tree stand on the east and west side of a pinch point to allow you to hunt regardless of the wind direction. Or if a certain location isn’t working out for you, it’s fairly easy to move them around to another site. The other advantage of using a hang on tree stand is that you can utilize large, twisted trees to hunt out of. Climbing tree stands are limited to straight, limbless trees, while ladder stands are restricted to a certain height and may not fit in a given tree very well. But gnarly, twisted oaks with lots of branches are no problem with hang on stands. You just have to navigate the climbing stick sections around the branches, and then you’re set. Check out the Helium Kickback tree stand and climbing sticks below for more information.

Helium Kickback Hang On Stand

The Hawk Helium Kickback stand is very solid, lightweight, and comfortable. It is made from durable aluminum to lighten the pack weight to only 10 pounds, yet it is extremely strong (able to support a load of 300 pounds). The platform is large enough to move about and the thick seat cushion is constructed of memory foam to ensure an enjoyable sit on any fall day. Teflon washers help remove any little squeaks between the pieces before they happen, keeping you undetected in the tree. Like the stacking Hawk Helium sticks discussed below, the Helium Kickback stand features Tree-Digger™ Teeth to anchor you in the tree so you can focus on hunting.

Advantages Over Other Tree Stands

  • Coming in at up to half the weight of other popular hang on stands, the Helium Kickback tree stand can really make a difference when hanging tree stands for mobile hunting or when you face an extra-long hike into a hunting spot.
  • Staying rock-solid is critical with climbing or hang on stands, and the aggressive teeth on this stand really sink in. By adding a simple strap around the stand and tree, you will stay securely anchored.
  • At some point, you’ve probably hunted in a squeaky tree stand and maybe even had it ruin a hunt for you. Teflon washers help this stand remain quiet when you shift your weight.

Helium Climbing Sticks

These climbing sticks (to accompany the Helium Kickback tree stand) offer a new level of quality than you’re probably used to with many other products. The Helium 3 Pack Climbing Sticks are constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum to make them super durable and each 30-inch section weighs only 2.9 pounds to make them extremely packable. The steps fold up and the stick sections quietly and securely nest together using Hawk’s new silent lock technology suction cups. They essentially lock together (via these suction cups) without even using any additional straps. But to further add to the stealth and make the setup in the field even easier, we have added a new versa button and silent strap setup to keep them secure and make setup on the tree a breeze. They are very sturdy on the tree too, using Tree-Digger™ Teeth to bite into the bark and stay there.

Advantages Over Other Climbing Sticks

  • At 2.9 pounds/section, the Hawk Helium climbing sticks weigh on the lower end of most of the market’s options. Yet they are still rated to hold up to 300 pounds.
  • The versa button and silent strap design allow you to quickly and quietly secure these climbing sticks to the tree without using a noisy ratchet strap.
  • The dual-sided steps allow more flexibility while climbing than many of the market’s every-other step design. Additionally, each step has rough grooves to improve traction, which is important for stability on rainy or cold days.

Planning Next Season

As you start to prepare for next season, here are some hunting tips to help you make the most of your new Helium Kickback tree stand and climbing sticks.

  • First, always bring (and use) a safety harness when you are hanging or hunting from a tree stand. There’s always an element of risk when you leave the ground, so don’t take any chances. Connect to the tree as you hang the climbing stick sections and especially when you get to the top to connect the platform itself.
  • Before you climb the tree, connect a rope from your belt line to each climbing stick section and your tree stand. That way, you won’t have to come down to get new sections each time – you can simply pull a new one up as you go.
  • As mentioned above, try to find a tree that is wide enough or has enough cover (e.g., branches, leaves, etc.) to hide your profile. For example, you can tuck hang on stands into some ancient oak trees to remain invisible to deer below you. Whereas you would stand out more if you were in a wide open aspen tree.

We think you’ll enjoy the Helium Kickback tree stand and climbing sticks. They have many advantages over other tree stand options, including being much lighter, very durable, and extremely silent. With any luck, they will help you get that much closer to a mature whitetail next fall!

Objectively Looking at Your Tree Stand Locations

Unbiased Ways to Plan Your Tree Stand Locations

Luck certainly is a factor to successfully harvesting a mature whitetail year in and year out. You cannot control luck, but what you can control is the amount of preparation you put into each season. Preparation starts with planning and evaluating your tree stand locations.

Tree stand placement strategies need to be looked at each year objectively. Information obtained from last year and any data you can gather in the offseason should guide your decisions about setting up a deer stand for the upcoming season. No matter if you are choosing a tree stand spot for the first time or are considering moving an existing one, an unbiased approach to selecting and reviewing your tree stand locations will give you that much more of an edge.

Remove the Guesswork for Finding the Perfect Tree Stand Location

The perfect tree stand location rarely falls into your lap, especially on new ground. Hanging a tree stand on a completely new property or in an untouched area on public ground has its challenges. Many times hunters bias themselves by looking at obvious areas and following the crowd. The best stand locations, however, are found by examining areas and putting the information to work.


There are so many technologies available today to the hunter. For example, you can complete 80-90% of your planning and scout from your home computer. Start by using digital aerial photos and topographic maps to analyze a piece of ground. Many times this data is enough to discount many spots before even setting foot on the ground. Additionally, there are often free state-level resources such as habitat layers, parcel ownership, and land use history available. Information like this can paint a more granular picture of where exactly the best tree stand locations may be. Finally, the last piece of your research should entail historical weather analysis. Historical weather when you are considering potential tree stand placement spots provides an indication of wind direction trends. Sometimes this data can put a likely spot either in the yes or no bucket to start ground truthing.

Off-site information goes a long way but at some point, you have to physical investigate potential areas for hanging a tree stand. Even the best-researched spots from home can go bust when you actually go there. What you have actually gained, though, is you have eliminated hundreds of “good” areas before you spend days hiking around. This allows you to be objective when assessing stand sites for whitetails. From there it is as simple as getting on the ground and making sure what you judged is the perfect tree stand location actually holds up.

Tree Stand Locations and the Factors That Keep You Honest

When is the last time you took a comprehensive look at tree stand locations you have previously hunted? Each day in a tree stand is one more data point that can be used to evaluate whether or not you are dialed in on a high percentage deer stand location.

5 Factors For Unbiased Tree Stand Hunting

  • Weather – Most whitetail activity is dependent on weather. Foraging, bedding and general movements are in some way tied to the weather. Historical observations of deer movement in different stand locations can dictate future activity when you tie it to weather patterns. For example, wind speed and direction determine which tree stands are likely to produce on a given day and which ones are not worth your time sitting in.
  • Hunt Logs – Real observations over time are your best pieces of data. A tree stand location may have all the right attributes and look good but if you never see deer or the right deer from it, it is time to move on. Write down or use one of the many apps to track observations from each stand you hunt. You can document deer sightings, rut timing, and other accounts that can clue you in on how good a tree stand placement may be.
  • Trail Camera Data – Trail cameras are your 24/7 hunt logs. Having them deployed in your tree stand locations gives you data when you are not there. This can help you decided when and how to hunt an area. Trail camera images and videos give you the ability to predict, in conjunction with the weather, what stand makes sense to hunt particularly if you are tracking individual bucks.
  • Past Success – Similar to hunt logs and trail camera data, past success of seeing deer and harvesting bucks are good ways to objectively assess your tree stands. If you have had no success day after day in a stand, it may be time to move or change up to a new location.
  • Seasonal Site Conditions – Each year is different. Another piece to the puzzle is current year deer sign and food availability. It changes yearly in an area and how it changes can be a major factor in if a stand produces or not. Investigate what deer sign you are seeing at each stand locations. Past success is something to consider but if this year’s mast crop is poor or agricultural crops have changed, deer will modify their patterns. Fresh scat, well-used trails and rut activity like scrapes and rubs are all signs deer are still using areas. Use this information in conjunction with other pieces of intel to hunt the right tree stands.

Stop Making Knee Jerk Mid-season Moves

Putting in the right preparation can be key from making off the cuff changes to stand locations mid-season. There are, however, times when even the best stand locations require a change.

Similar to setting up a deer stand on a new property or analyzing yearly hunting spots, the same methodology has to be implemented during the season. For example, rut activity is picking up nearby and deer patterns are changing related to it. Here you are wise to have a good hang on tree stand or climber to make quick changes day to day. Also, trail camera scouting can help with determining exactly when to make these changes.

In addition, tree stand placement during the rut is one of the hardest times to objectively consider where to put or move stands. Deer patterns during the rut season can be all over the place. Staying put in a tree stand all day is not always the answer no matter how much preparation you have put in. Hunt the moment and use available field information from fresh sign to actual observations to objectively positioning your stands.

Planning next year’s tree stand locations can be accomplished one of two ways. Either you put them back up in the same spot you hunted last year or you refocus your attention and objectively put the odds in your favor. The best stand locations do not happen by chance. Prepare and be unbiased with each tree stand placement.