How to Use a Climbing Tree Stand

A climbing tree stand is a piece of equipment that is used to give an elevated position on a tree to provide ease of movement. Tree stands are mostly used by arborists and hunters.

Climbing tree stands are a useful tool for climbing up a tree more efficiently and safely
Climbing tree stands are a useful tool for climbing up a tree more efficiently and safely

But when hunting season is over, bird watchers and wildlife photographers take up the use of these tree stands too.

If you are an avid wildlife adventurer or hunter then climbing tree stands may be an essential tool to have in your possession. You would be able to climb trees easier and rest comfortably.

And if you are hunting, it gives you a better vantage point to hunt game more efficiently. Plus it is easy to move about with as it can be carried on your back like a backpack.

Now before going out to buy your climbing tree stand, you must learn how to properly use one. Each model comes with its different modes of use from its respective manufacturers, so you should study the user’s manual diligently.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to use a climbing tree stand for beginners.

Guidelines On How To Use A Climbing Tree Stand

Choose the Right Climbing Tree Stand

First things first, buy the climbing tree stand. When buying a tree stand there is one crucial thing to consider, and that is your weight. You must make sure to go for the tree stand with a higher weight limit than yours. This is for safety reasons and to also ensure ease of climbing.

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Check Your Stand for Damages

This should be shopping 101 – always check the product or item for damages. This same rule applies to your newly acquired tree stand. Check if the bolts and screws are complete and free of rust or dents.

And if you have trouble assembling your tree stand, pack it up and return it to the point of purchase for a refund or an exchange.

Pick the Right Tree

So you’ve gotten your climbing tree stand, properly assembled it, and are out in the forest to give it a test drive. Not just yet. There are still guidelines for you to follow before you can ascend a tree. And one of those guidelines is picking the right tree for your climbing.

be careful in choosing which tree to climb
Be careful in choosing which tree to climb as a fall can lead to serious injuries

The main point here is to check its width from its base to the top. If the tree doesn’t get narrow towards the top then it is a good choice for climbing.

This might prove difficult though, you may most likely not find this “ideal” tree in your location. So you must be prepared to adjust your climbing tree stand at the base to fit that perfect height for you.

Some examples of good sturdy trees to climb are maple, poplar and oak trees. These trees are usually straight and have barks higher up in the tree. They’re the best fit for climbing.

Before scaling up you should take note of branches to saw off so they do not get in your way during the climb. You should note that the average weight a climbing tree stand can hold is 300 lbs. 

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Study the Tree Stand Manual carefully

Every tree stand consists of three basic components: the seat, platform, and steps. But these tree stands are also designed differently from the others.

So you must make sure to properly know and understand the one you purchase. The assembly of each part/ piece and how to use it safely are the main things worth noting down.

Properly Secure Your Climbing Tree Stand

Now that you have picked a tree for climbing, the next step is to properly secure your tree stand for a safe ascent and descent.

Attach the top and bottom parts of the tree stand securely to each other. You can use the bungee cords that come with a tree stand for this purpose. If there is no cord make sure to buy some before your climb

YouTube video

You can watch this video for a tutorial on how to properly achieve this.

Secure Yourself and Feet To the Tree Stand

Your tree stand is safe and secure. Now it is time to make sure YOU are safe and secure. You must properly secure yourself to the tree before climbing.

The best and safest way to do this is through the use of a full-body tree climbing harness and a tether. All you have to do is tie the tree above your head and secure your harness to it.

Having a safety harness is one of the most important things to own if you want to climb. You may purchase one here to avoid falling.

And to further avoid falling, you must make sure both feet are securely tied to the bottom platform of your tree stand. This will prevent your feet from slipping and falling and it will also help in your climb. You need to use your feet to pull the bottom platform up as you ascend higher up the tree.

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The Climb Begins!

If you have followed every step so far you are now ready to safely begin your climb up the tree with your tree stand. In the process of climbing, you are free to loosen the tether above your head to move up as you go on ahead.

Test the durability of branches before actually climbing them
Test the durability of branches before actually climbing them if possible, and ease your mind

And you must always remember to keep yourself safely secured to the tree before you start the climb until after you are down on the ground.

Safety Tips While in the Tree Stand

A tree stand may prove harmful or even fatal if not used properly. So safety when using tree stands is an important factor.

Always make sure to study and follow the manufacturer’s user manual to assemble and disassemble the tree stand. Injuries and bodily harm are avoided if all guidelines stated in the manual are followed correctly.

Always keep your full body harness and keep both feet securely attached to the platform as well. You must also prepare yourself on how to keep your body warm while up in the tree. You can achieve this by acquiring the right clothing like heated socks and warm boots for your feet.


There you have it! The step-by-step procedure on how to safely and correctly set up and use a climbing tree stand.

Knowing these guidelines is recommended especially to newbies in tree climbing. If tips and instructions are not followed then there may be injuries and bodily harm as a result.

Make sure to acquire and use all the right gears and equipment beforehand to ensure a hitch-free climb.


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Agness Walewinder
Travel freak, vagabond, photography passionate, blogger, life enthusiast, backpacker, adventure hunter and endless energy couchsurfer living by the rule "Pack lite, travel far and live long!"
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