In July and August, treestand hanging is hot, sweaty, buggy work.  You do not want to fight the elements to reach a “perfect” location only to discover you don’t have the gear you need.  It’s infuriating and means another disruptive trip in and out.

To avoid retracing your steps, here’s a quick checklist:

  1. Safe Stands and Ladders – the woods is not the place to safety check your stands, ladders and climbing systems. Do it at home!  When it comes to stands and ladders, the only safe philosophy is, “If in doubt, throw it out.”  Today, replacing gear is as easy as visiting Summit Treestands, clicking, and waiting for UPS to make the delivery.
  2. Safety System –a 4-point safety system is mandatory whenever your feet leave the ground, but sadly, studies show as many as 50 percent of still hunters don’t wear a harness in treestands.  Lifting, leaning, and pulling to secure a treestand, make hanging them more potentially dangerous than simply sitting in them. Wear your harness!  Accessories like a lineman’s climbing strap from Hunter Safety Systems allow maneuverability and provide added assurance.
  3. Hoist, Rope – the same hoist you’ll use to lift that trophy buck up to the meat pole will do a great job hanging stands and providing often-needed, third and fourth hands.  Don’t have one? Order one. Parachute cord with a beanbag at the end makes getting the hoist where you need it easy.
  4. Pole Saw –  the more work, like limb clearing, you can do from the ground, the safer stand setting is.  A pruning saw on an extendable pole makes quick work of it, with your feet firmly on terra firma.
  5. Pruner –  For fine work clearing shooting lanes, a hand pruner is a must for efficient, get-it-all-done-at-once stand placement.  A ratchet pruner allows you to cut thicker limbs easily.
  6. Insect Repellent —  Spray up with DEET if you want to, but that smell isn’t natural to the woods and lingers a long time.  It’s far less disruptive to fire up a ThermaCELL.  The repellent is a synthesized version of the chemical in chrysanthemum flowers so it’s natural.  To take scent control even farther, ThermaCELL also offers repellent pads in earth scent.
  7. Miscellaneous —  throw together a bag with items like extra straps, nuts and bolts, cotter pins, clamps, adjustable wrenches, multi-tool, knife and anything else you’ll find useful.  Gear can only help you if you have it in the woods, not back home!