A List of 12 of the Best Rated Climbing Tree Stands for 2018

The ability to position yourself in a spot that provides you with a clear and unhindered view over a popular deer trail is a huge asset for a hunter. With the advent of the climbing tree stand and the freedom it gives you to position it on just about any available tree, as long as you have the patience to wait for your opportunity, you now have a big advantage.

​They are relatively light weight, they are easy to maneuver and they are comfortable. Sitting out of the way, out of the eye-line and scent of the unsuspecting deer allows you to wait for your shot.

​The other big benefit with using a climbing tree stand is that it allows you to stay mobile. If your first choice in hunting area is a bust, you can quickly pack up, fold your stand and throw it on your back to move to another tree.

​The platform size is an important factor that must be considered when you buy your tree stand. If you think you will be comfortable standing on a smaller platform then you will go for the smallest and lightest possible. If, however, you would rather the security of a larger platform, there are bigger, more spacious options available and they should be what you aim for.

​On this page we will use the experiences and reactions of customers who have bought and used the climbing tree stands that are examined below. This will give us the opportunity to understand what the strengths and weaknesses of each one are as well as who might be best suited to a particular model. With any luck we will be able to provide you with a shortlisted selection of potential candidates of the best climbing tree stands to come up with a single choice.

​Not only that we have compiled the customer ratings for each of the tree stands and have displayed them as part of the specifications.

Comparison of the Best Rated Climbing Tree Stands​

Make / Model

Weight
(pounds)

Max
Capacity

MSRP

Summit Treestands Viper SD

20.0 lbs

300 lbs

$299.99

Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II

17.5 lbs

350 lbs

$389.99

Summit Titan SD

25 lbs

350 lbs

$349.99

Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II

21 lbs

350 lbs

$449.99

Summit Mini Viper SD

18 lbs

300 lbs

$279.99

Summit OpenShot SD

15 lbs

300 lbs

$259.99

Summit Goliath SD

21 lbs

350 lbs

$319.99

Summit 180 Max SD

26 lbs

350 lbs

$389.99

Ol Man Multi Vision Steel

29 lbs

300 lbs

$179.99

Summit Viper Classic

30 lbs

300 lbs

$199.99

Muddy Stalker

15 lbs

300 lbs

Cell 11 / 5

X-Stand Deluxe Hunting

16 lbs

300 lbs

$159.99

Descriptions of the Best Rated Climbing Tree Stands

Now that we have had a chance to take a brief side-by-side look at a range of climbing tree stands we will take a more detailed look at each model. Below is a short review of each tree stand along with product specifications and listed features plus any noted strengths and weaknesses.

Read through the details of each of the climbing stands reviews below to get a better understanding of what it is that differentiates each product as well as which one might best meet your needs.​

Summit Treestands Viper SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.7 / 5.0
  • Weight : 20.0 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 36"
  • Seat Size : 18" W x 12" D
  • Seat Height : 
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $299.99

The Viper SD has been described as one of the most comfortable treestand that hunters have ever used and it is for this reason that it enjoys its high rating. The seat is foam-padded paired with a padded backrest. The size of the seat measures a roomy 18 inches wide by 12 inches deep. There are also a couple of padded zippered arm rests to lean on too.

The seat may be raised and lowered into place depending on whether you are using the stand when bow hunting or with a gun. In either case you have a full perimeter frame that increases the safety when you go to stand up.

Other features of the Viper SD includes the very important aspect of noise control in the form of DeadMetal sound deadening technology used on the platform so that there will be no sound as you move around.

Safety features have been built into the construction with the use of the SummitLokt Structural Enhancement process to lock the joints into place to maximize strength and rigidity before they are welded into place.

This model ticks many of the boxes for both the bow hunter and the gun hunter. It comes with a range of safety features, ensures you will wait in comfort and is capable of carrying weight of up to 300 pounds.

​Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.5 / 5.0
  • Weight : 17.5 lbs
  • Platform : 19.5" x 30"
  • Seat Size : not stated
  • Weight Capacity : 350 lbs
  • MSRP : $389.99

This tree stand is the result of a constant evolution and improvement on earlier models of what has been a particularly popular tree stand manufacturer.

What makes this climbing tree stand so popular is the combination of its light weight and the sturdiness it offers to the hunter. It only weights 17.5 pounds but it is capable of supporting weight up to 350 pounds.

Customers have rated it highly due to its portability and the fact that it will pack into a compact unit. It folds up flat and you barely notice it when it is on your back and you’re making your way in or out of position. The ability of the stand to climb is a matter of debate with some people claiming it is a very simple process while others have found it difficult. It appears to depend greatly on the type of tree you are climbing.

It has been marked down on the issue of comfort with the seat not really providing a lot of padded comfort which is a trade-off to the weight savings.

​Summit Titan SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.5 / 5.0
  • Weight : 25 lbs
  • Platform : 21" x 30.75"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 350 lbs
  • MSRP : $349.99

The Titan is one of the tree stands in the Summit range that has been designed to cater to the larger hunter. It has a maximum weight capacity of 350 lbs and it weighs a little more at 25 pounds.

The stand features a foam padded seat with a backrest. The platform is a 6-channel platform frame featuring Dead Metal Sound Deadening (SD) Technology. It comes with a Four-Point FAS harness system with a safety strap. The platform itself is roomy and silent.

Some of the reasons why the stand is one of the highest rated climbing stands among hunters comes from the fact that it both caters to the larger men, yet it is incredibly comfortable to sit in. Also, it is very easy to carry thanks to the small, flat shape it folds down to.

It has lost points in the ratings due to the fact that when climbing and the harness is pulled snugly, you are pulled in too closely to the tree making it difficult to climb. It has also been mentioned that the backrest of the stand can be a little noisy when it is pushed against the tree.

​Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.4 / 5.0
  • Weight : 21 lbs
  • Platform : 19.5" x 30"
  • Seat Size : not stated
  • Weight Capacity : 350 lbs
  • MSRP : $449.99

As the name suggests, this is a is a wider version of the original Sit & Climb tree stand. The platform is a full 30” x 19.5” made from one-piece cast aluminum. The seat is a 2-panel contoured foam pad that has been designed to give extra roominess for the hunter.

The safety features designed into the stand include a 6-point fall arrest system and it uses 2 reular sized traction belts.

Customers who have given the stand a high rating have done so because it is light weight and quiet. The comfort of the seat is not an issue and the entire stand feels completely solid while it is in place up in the tree.

Those who deducted a few ratings points did so on the issue of the straps used for carrying it along with the weight of the unit which, while not being particularly heavy, is heavier than some of the comparable stands.

For those hunters who might feel more secure in a larger climbing treestand, the Wide Sit & Climb is a great option.

​Summit Mini Viper SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.4 / 5.0
  • Weight : 18 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 24.75"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $279.99

The Viper Mini SD tree stand has been designed to function and look like the Viper SD but is built on a slightly smaller scale. This means that all of the features that have made the original Viper such a popular stand can also be found in this one.

The platform of the stand is just as wide as the Viper at 20 inches wide but is shorter by 1.25 inches. The seat remains the same size and, importantly, has plenty of padding to ensure the comfort is maintained.

It comes with Rapid Climb Stirrups plus a 4-point safety harness system that includes the safety strap and attached SRS strap.

The customers who really loved the Mini Viper appreciated the compact nature of the stand when it was folded down and needed to be carried. It is also easy to set up and the comfort of the seat gets numerous mentions.

The stand is suited to smaller framed people with most people agreeing that anyone over 6’ 2” will probably struggle to feel comfortable. Don’t buy this stand if you are a larger man.

​Summit OpenShot SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.3 / 5.0
  • Weight : 15 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 28.75"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $259.99

The OpenShot SD tree stand is the stand in the Summit range that has been specifically designed to cater to the bow hunter. The open nature at the front means there is complete visibility and room to draw your bow. The seat also folds all the way up to allow you to stand flush with the tree when the need arises.

The OpenShot is also one of the lightest stands in the Summit range making it very attractive for those who are looking at a long hike to the hunting ground.

It comes with RapidClimb Stirrups and a four-point safety harness as well as backpackstrap, astand umbilical rope and a utility strap.

The positive comments about the OpenShot come from those who appreciate its light weight and the small frame. Although it’s not for everyone a good proportion of people find the smaller platform a good thing. As with other stands in the range the seat comfort is once again seen as a very positive factor and the fact there is no front bar to get in the way of the bow hunter is also greatly appreciated.

The reason why the stand is not rated as high as some of the others comes down to the fact that it doesn’t fold down to as compact a shape as other stands. Another negative factor that some people have commented on is the extra effort it seems to take to climb the stand into position.

​Summit Goliath SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.3 / 5.0
  • Weight : 21 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 36"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 350 lbs
  • MSRP : $319.99

The Goliath has been designed to cater for the larger men who appreciate more room to move. The design is very similar to the Viper SD but has a wider top. The larger size is achieved while also being careful not to allow the weight to get too heavy.

It comes with all of the features of the other stands in the Summit range such as the Rapid Climb Stirrups, DeadMetal technology to maintain the stealth qualities.

The positive reviews have remarked on the room that a larger hunter has. There are also a lot of customers who still think this is a lightweight treestand. Comfort is once again mentioned by quite a few people and the Goliath is just as comfortable as the other stands in the range.

Negative comments have been made around the quality of the finishes that are used on the metal parts which a number of customers finding that the powder coating comes off very easily. At least one larger customer found that the platform was beginning to bend under his weight.

​Summit 180 Max SD Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.3 / 5.0
  • Weight : 26 lbs
  • Platform : 21" x 30.75"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 350 lbs
  • MSRP : $389.99

The 180 Max SD stand has been equipped with a hunting seat that can spin the seat through 180 degrees. This means it is possible to turn the seat around so you are facing the trunk of the tree. The seat is also the larger Surround Seat.

Hunters who are looking for the most luxurious feeling in terms of room in a climbing treestand will appreciate this model. It work particularly well for tall people who need the extra leg room.

This is a stand that earns some high praise, particularly around the comfort of the seat which is large in size and easily adjusted so that it can be leaning forward or back, depending on the way you prefer to sit. The stand is very large and is almost unusable unless you are a tall or large person. It is considered to be lightweight for its size

Criticisms of the stand from hunters include its bulky nature and the fact that the instructions that come with it are not particularly explanatory. More than a few customers have found that when they have opened the box a snap on the seat was already broken. Something to look out for.

Once again, it is clear that this is a tree stand that has been designed to provide the larger hunter with a dependable option.

​Ol Man Multi Vision Steel Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.1 / 5.0
  • Weight : 29 lbs
  • Platform : 18" x 32"
  • Seat Size : 21" wide net
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $179.99

The Multi Vision Steel tree stand is an extremely strong and solid stand thanks to the fact that the frame is made from steel. It is also a little different in that the seat is a mesh sling that serves as both a weight saving device as well as a comfortable option.

The stand can be set up in a number of different configurations starting with the use of the straight bar or with the reversible Gun Rest / Foot Rest. These configurations give you the option to set up for gun hunting or bow hunting.

Customers have been quite positive with their reviews of the stand and have cited the comfort of the seat as one of the reasons for their high rating. Other factors include the sturdiness that makes it particularly stable in the tree, the fact that it is very quiet to use and the versatility offered by the shooting rail.

The negative comments center largely around the fact that the stand is heavier than others and that it is made from steel. It has been noted on more than one occasion that parts of the stand exhibit signs of rust before it has even been taken out into the elements.

​Summit Viper Classic Treestand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.1 / 5.0
  • Weight : 30 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 28.75"
  • Seat Size : 18" x 12"
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $199.99

The Viper has been a popular part of the Summit line-up for many years and quickly became the leading climbing treestand that is roomy and solid. It is constructed from steel so it is rock solid and highly dependable. It is suited to both rifle and bow hunting and is highly portable for when it is time to move to another tree.

The seat is foam-padded and comfortable and can be raised for bow hunting or lowered for gun hunting. The front bar is solid and may be used as a gun rest but it is designed to assist with the climbing process.

Customers have found this to be a very comfortable stand that is easy to climb with and feel safe and secure when up in the tree. It has been found to be noiseless while you are sitting in it thanks to the sound deadening technology that is now used throughout all Summit stands.

Compared to the more modern climbing treestands, the Viper Classic is quite heavy and customers have mentioned this fact in their reviews. In fact, this is one of the main reasons why it loses ratings points. The carrying straps have also been found to be uncomfortable, another factor that has since been improved with subsequent model upgrades.

​Muddy Stalker Climber Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 4.0 / 5.0
  • Weight : 15 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 28"
  • Seat Size : 21" wide, adjustable depth
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $199.99

The Muddy Stalker climbing tree stand is a very lightweight option that features a netted seat made of nylon which can be adjusted to provide maximum comfort. The platform features non-slip slats and the armrests and seat bar are padded for both comfort and to keep the entire thing silent.

It comes with all of the safety features you would expect of a leading tree stand such as a full body fall arrest harness.

What the customers like about the Stalker is the light weight, its ease of use and its compact nature when it is folded down for transport. The net seating is a weight saving and it is also very comfortable and it locks in nice and tight to the tree to ensure a solid platform all the way up and all the way down. For the price, this is considered to be one of the best climbing treestands on the market.

There has really only been a single negative comment from a customer who felt it was difficult to climb with and gave them a sense that it was too flimsy. This, however, appears to be an aberration compared to the majority of comments.

X-Stand Deluxe Hunter Tree Stand

Click for Pricing Details and Reviews on Amazon.com​

Specifications

  • Rating : 3.9 / 5.0
  • Weight : 16 lbs
  • Platform : 20" x 27"
  • Seat Size : 21" wide 16" deep
  • Weight Capacity : 300 lbs
  • MSRP : $159.99

This is another lightweight hunting stand that some people have found to be surprisingly comfortable and solid. The fact that it only weighs 16 pounds leads some people to believe it won’t feel sturdy when up in the tree but this is not the case.

It is an easy process of climbing when the feet are hooked into the safety hoops. The frame of the stand is made from durable aluminium and all of the joints have been treated with nylon washers to ensure complete silence when moving around and sitting in the seat.

Customers who have been impressed with the stand have found that it is more sturdy than they expected it to be based on how light it is to carry. It also folds flat and is easy to carry into position. The mesh seat is comfortable and it is also silent which is a big bonus.

The reason why the stand has lost ratings points largely comes from a few people who have not properly understood the correct way to set it on the tree and climb with it. Other issues have come from the carry strap which is narrow which hurts the shoulder. It also must be removed when reaching your hunting spot so that it doesn’t get in the way when climbing.

Tree Stand Safety

We must say a word or two about treestand safety because it seems the message isn't getting in. It seems people are ignoring the necessity of using a safety harness.

Despite frequent warnings from state agencies and companies such as Bass Pro, we continue to see news stories about hunters falling from a tree stand and either being seriously injured or dying. No hunting trip is worth that.

Use the safety equipment supplied with your tree stand but, just as important, read the user manual and ensure that you have understood how everything should be used correctly.​

Climbing Treestands For Larger Hunters

We have seen a lot of different types of climbing treestands mentioned as part of our examination into what has been rated as the best as far as customer feedback is concerned. Some tree stands have been specifically designed for larger framed and weighted hunters. Some of these stands have been given a lower rating based on the fact they are heavier than the ultralight models.

It is worthwhile once again highlighting these stands to ensure that, if you are looking for a larger, more solid stand that is capable of holding greater weights you are completely aware of what is available.

Summit Treestands 180 Max SD​

This stand is capable of handling weight of up to 350lbs and it is solidly constructed with an aluminum​ frame and platform. It uses RapidClimb Stirrups to assist in the climbing process and is perfectly suited to use by larger people who are accompanied by their equipment. A hugely important about this stand is the seat which is incredibly comfortable and can be set up either facing out from the tree or turned around facing inward. This is a fine option for the larger hunter.

Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II

This is the other main contender that should be carefully considered for use by the heavier hunter. Not only is the seat nice and wide to accommodate the additional size but the platform is larger and the operation of the climbing process is easy to operate. The stand itself is surprisingly lightweight but through an impressive construction technique is capable of carrying up to 350 pounds in weight. The way the stand is designed means that it will not only be usable by heavier people but will also be suitable for taller hunters too. ​

The Most Comfortable Climbing Tree Stand​

When casting about through all of the different makes and models of climbing treestands it was clear that one particular stand was singled out by a huge number of customers purely for the fact that it was far more comfortable than any other that has been tried.The stand that is considered to be the most comfortable tree stand of this group is the:

Summit Treestands Titan SD Tree Stand​

Other models that were also quoted as getting high ratings points because of their comfort include a few of the stands that feature mesh sling seats such as the Ol' Man Multi Vision Steel Tree Stand and the Muddy Stalker Climber Stand.

The Best Rated Climbing Tree Stand

It is pretty clear from the comparison table above that Summit Treestands is a dominant force in the tree stand industry and the products that the company produces have become extremely popular. Not only are the stands well made but they cater to the needs and wants of tree stand hunters, meeting comfort needs, ease of use, weight preferences and ease of carrying.

The all-important factor of safety is also met by the company with an impressive array of features and accessories made available to ensure that each and every tree stand hunting trip will be incident free.

And out of all of the climbing tree stands that have been examined, the one that was rated more highly than any other, by some margin, too it muse be said is:

Summit Treestands Viper SD Climbing Tree Stand

Conclusion​

Based on the many customer reviews we have been able to present you with a substantial selection of the best quality climbing treestands available. All you need to do is work out what size platform you need, whether seat comfort is an important addition and the ease with which it can be carried. Of course, safety is vitally important and all of the major manufacturers take treestand safety extremely seriously. Just remember to always wear your safety harness when you’re in your stand.

Good hunting.​

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