Treestand Buying Guide

As a bow hunter there are times when you need to get yourself up to a higher vantage point but you’re faced with the prospect of a possible long wait. What is the best piece of equipment that you are going to need? Obviously you will be looking for a tree stand but there are many different types of tree stands to choose from. When buying a tree stand it is important to be able to compare the different types available and the chart that has been compiled below gives you the opportunity to make that comparison.

From the simple climbing stand to the more elaborate box stand there are positives and negatives attached to each. Choose from the listed tree stand options below to find a tree stand that will best suit your needs.

To decipher the table a little the columns can be broken down to to the following:

An image of the treestand, the Brand and Model Name, the Weight of the treestand, the Seat Size which measures the sitting surface, the Platform Area is the size of the footrest, the Maximum Weight Capacity is the safest maximum load that can be placed on the treestand, the Type indicates the treestand type and the Price which can be broken down as $ = under $50, $$ = $50 - $99, $$$ = $100 - $199, $$$$ = $200 - $299 and $$$$$ = over $300.

Treestand Comparison Table

 
Brand / Name
Model
Weight
Seat
Size
Platform
Area
Max
Weight
Capacity
type
Price
Ameristep Buck Commander Redemption


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ratings and reviews

9.75lbs8.75" x 14.75"29.75" x 18.5"300lbsHang-On$$$
API ACL303-A Crusader

Click here for full pricing,
ratings and reviews
22lbs17" x 11"20 x 26"300lbsClimbing$$$$
API ACL605-A Quest

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ratings and reviews

26lbs19" x 12"20" x 26"350lbsClimbing$$$$$
API Grand Slam Extreme

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ratings and reviews

27lbs17" x 9"20" x 28"300lbsClimbing$$$$$
Big Dog Mastiff Stand

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ratings and reviews
27.5lbs19.5" x 10"30" x 35"300lbsHang-On$$
Big Game Boss Lite

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ratings and reviews

15lbs14" x 8"20" x 27"300lbsHang-On$$$
Big Game The Boss XL

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ratings and reviews
20lbs16" x 10"25" x 34"300lbsHang-On$$$
Guide Gear 15' Ladder Stand

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ratings and reviews
n/a19.25" x 13.5"17 1/4" x 12 1/2"300lbsLadder$$
Summit Treestands Openshot SD

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ratings and reviews
15lbs16" x 10"20" x 24-3/4300lbsClimbing$$$$
Summit Treestands Viper SD

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ratings and reviews
20lbs18" x 12"20 x 28 3/4300lbsClimbing$$$$
Gorilla Kong HX

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ratings and reviews
15lbs16" x 10"21" x 27"300lbsHang-On$$
Gorilla King Kong HX

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ratings and reviews
17lbs16" x 10"24" x 30"300lbsHang-On$$$
Gorilla HX Greyback Stealth

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ratings and reviews
27.5lbs18" x 22"19.5" x 33"300lbsClimbing$$$
Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II

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ratings and reviews
17.5lbs17.25" W19.5" x 30"350lbsClimbing$$$$$
Lone Wolf Assault II

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ratings and reviews
11lbs14" x 12"19.5" x 26"350lbsHang-On$$$$
Lone Wolf Sit & Climb Combo II

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ratings and reviews
21lbs21" x 21"19.5" x 30"350lbsClimbing$$$$$
Lone Wolf Alpha II

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ratings and reviews
14lbs14" x 12"19.5" x 30"350lbsHang-On$$$$
Big Dog Beagle II

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ratings and reviews
17.5lbs14" x 8"20" x 25"300lbsHang-On$$
Big Dog Foxhound

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ratings and reviews
48lbs19.5" x 12"12" x 17-1/4"300lbsLadder$$
Rivers Edge Lite-Foot

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14lbs16" x 10"24" x 25"300lbsHang-On$$$

What Is A Tree Stand?

The tree stand is an important piece of equipment for the serious bow hunter who is looking for a suitable way of gaining a positional advantage. By sitting secure in a tree on a well made tree stand it is possible to gain an ideal field of vision that provides a clearer and cleaner shot.

Using a tree stand gives you the opportunity of remaining comfortable while waiting for your target to move into range. A good tree stand will be simple to put into position, will be comfortable to use and will provide you with all of the necessary safety equipment. It is possible to get tree stands that are completely enclosed for full concealment and protection as well as light minimal versions that are easier to carry and assemble.

Important Features Required For A Good Tree Stand

There are a number of aspects that are crucial in determining what makes a tree stand a worthwhile purchase. Safety should be considered very high on the list because there are real dangers involved in climbing and perching against the trunk of a tree. Make sure the tree stand manufacturer that you buy has a proven track record when it comes to quality materials.

The feature that is going to be the make or break factor for the tree stand is comfort. A tree stand that is too narrow or that proves too uncomfortable to sit in for any length of time is not going to be used very often. More importantly, it is not going to be recommended to other hunters when the inevitable question comes up about what is the best tree stand.

A final factor that many hunters are going to consider as being very important is the weight of the tree stand. These pieces of equipment will invariably have to carried to your preferred hunting location and this means the weight of the stand is going to be very important. If it is too bulky or overly heavy it is going to get the thumbs down from a majority of hunters.

Types of Tree Stands

There are a number of different types of tree stands available and they will suit different situations, different types of hunting and even different body types. Choosing a tree stand is as individual a choice as choosing a compound bow and should be done carefully after weighing up the various pros and cons surrounding each type.

Ladder Tree Stands - it’s really all in the name when you’re trying to work out what a ladder tree stand is. This is a combination tree stand that comes with a ladder that is attached. The benefit of this type of stand is that getting up the tree and into position is very simple thanks to the ladder. There is a very obvious disadvantage to using a ladder tree stand and that is the weight that the ladder adds to the entire rig. Another strike against the ladder tree stand is the extra noise that tends to come from them when both setting them up and when ascending into position.

Climbing Tree Stands - a climbing tree stand is possibly the most popular choice these days thanks to the mobility of the stand and the selection of different options that are available. They are relatively lightweight and are usually equipped with a range of features that make them very comfortable to sit in. Setting them up is simple, they are light and quiet and are a relatively inexpensive option. They can be a little heavier than other types of treestands, so if you are looking to save some weight we have included a List of Lightest Climbing Treestands.

Hang-On Tree Stands - these stands are also known as lock-on tree stands and they work be attaching to the trunk of the tree with a strap or a chain. These tree stands require some type of climbing aid to get up into them. These aids might come in the form of steps or temporary rungs or a climbing stick. The hang-on tree stands are usually very light and would be preferred by the hunter who doesn’t like carrying a lot of equipment with them. The disadvantage of the hang-on tree stand is the basic nature of the seating arrangement that some people may find doesn’t provide them with enough features. We have also provided a handy list of Lightweight Hang-On Treestands.

Tripod Tree Stands - what do you do when you don’t have any trees around in the area where you want to hunt? The lightweight and portable answer is to use a tripod tree stand. These tree stands can be erected anywhere and will provide a stable elevated perch just about anywhere you need them. The disadvantage to using this type of tree stand is that they usually leave you very exposed unless you manage to find one that provides some type of additional cover.

Box Tree Stands - if you have a favorite location that you intend on using year after year the tree stand that you would be most likely to use is a box tree stand. This is a tree stand that can resemble a tent and can be erected in a tree and left there for long periods of time, even from one hunting season to the next. Some box tree stands are made from a lightweight cloth material stretched over a frame while others are more permanent and are made from a hard shell of either plastic or even wood.

Tree Stand Brands

Listed below are some of the biggest brands of tree stands that are currently available. Although this list is not exhaustive the manufacturers of these stands will be able to provide an example of each of the different types that have been discussed above. As they become available we will be posting reviews of treestands from each of these manufacturers. The more popular of these treestands have been listed in the comparison table above.

Summit Treestands

Big Game Treestands

Gorilla Treestands

Lone Wolf Treestands

API Outdoors Treestands

Big Dog Treestands

The single most important thing to remember when using any of the treestands that have been mentioned on this page is that they are fully equipped with safety accessories and these features must be properly utilized at all times. The biggest incidence of hunting accidents comes about due to mishaps surrounding the treestand so it is imperative that all safety advice is closely followed every time they are in use.

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