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Best Climbing Tree Stand

Updated on December 28, 2010

Climbing Tree Stands

Hunting is a challenging and rewarding activity that requires patience, perseverance, and perspicacity. Good equipment makes increases the likelihood of a successful hunt, and also makes the hunt more enjoyable. Warm clothing for winter expeditions is crucial. Clean and accurate guns and bows are obvious. One piece of gear that is sometime overlooked until painful experience teaches otherwise is the tree stand.

Sitting for hours in a tree stand can be much more comfortable, and perhaps almost enjoyable, by choosing a proper product that meets specific requirements. A basic tree stand should be sturdy enough to bear up to long periods of use, but light enough to be carried deep into the woods. Obviously, durability and weight are not the only considerations for identifying a serviceable tree stand. Here are a few best selling climbing tree stands. Many quality products are available online from reputable manufacturers.

One important feature of any tree stand is the body harness. Some tree stand manufacturers include a "TMA body harness". The TMA, or Treestand Manufacturer's Association, is a voluntary group comprised of equipment manufacturers. The TMA focuses on safety issues surrounding tree stands including construction, materials, and application.

Summit Viper SS 81066 Climbing Stand

This lightweight unit includes an adjustable seat for convenient bow hunting and gun hunting. The entire device weighs only 20 pounds, making it very convenient for long treks to secret hunting places. It supports up to 300 pounds of sitter and gear. It also attaches to trees as 'thin' as 8 inches and as heavy as 20 inches (diameter).

Many hunters feel that this seat is easy to set up in the dark, and also very comfortable for long hours of sitting. The seat measures 18" in width by 12" in depth and is nicely padded.

Guide Gear Tree Stand

This durable tree stand includes a folding steel frame that tops out at only 18 pounds. It will support up to 300 pounds, but it's still light enough to move between trees even if you've been hunting since the early morning. The seat/platform is 18" by 25", but the footrest is much larger, leaving room for basic gear and a little restlessness.

The seat and the base are connected with two steel supports: the supports are united with dual cross members. All permanent steel-to-steel connections are welded.

The two hanging straps are cinched using mechanical ratchets, making your tree stand into a tree hugger, but a good kind of tree hugger.

Ameristep Grizzly Climber

We don't know if hunting grizzlies is recommended, especially from a tree stand rather than a concrete bunker, but this chair is probably more useful for hunting game that is less likely to come up the tree after you.This useful device includes a suspended seat for extra comfort along with a back support that beats leaning against tree bark for hours at a time.

The shooting rail is padded and camo'd, while all steel surfaces are power-coated for a dull and opaque finish.

A TMA approved full body climbing harness is included.

Guide Gear® 24x29 1/2" Hang - on Tree Stand

This minimalist tree stand provides the bare essentials for tree-hunting. A small padded seat (14" by 8") and a decent platform (24" by 29") are just enough to hold you up. No backrest or armrests are included. The platform connects to the seat via two steel tubes and one other steel tube interconnecting the vertical members. Ratchet straps are used to cinch the stand to the tree. It's not the most luxurious product we've reviewed, but it is economical.

The (small) seat can be flipped up for bow-hunting.

Sniper Treestands Vulcan Deluxe Fixed Position Treestand

They probably don't hunt game animals on the planet Vulcan, but this tree stand would provide hours of comfort should the sport ever become popular there. A padded armrest and footrest along with a suspended seat cushion and a padded backrest make this seat one of the comfiest portable seats on the market. The footrest actually folds up from the platform: it's a innovative design.

All this comfort does come at a price: the entire unit weighs in at 26 pounds, rather heavy when compared to the other products reviewed here. 300 pounds of hunter, gear, radio, TV, food, and laptop computer can be supported by this stand.

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