1 – Use a safety harness. I know that with each year it’s like we are dragging more and more items into the woods. But don’t skip the harness. Don’t think that you can’t fall out of a tree stand and don’t think the stand won’t break. And no matter how much badonkadonk you got going on back there it won’t help you bounce up from that.
2 – Use a fall restraint or tether system. Don’t leave the ground without first clipping on. I know people that always use a harness however the whole way up and the whole way down they aren’t protected. Again, you can slip, fall, or a piece of the stand can break.
3 – Practice putting on the safety harness and climbing using the tether system. Don’t wait until the morning of the hunt while you are standing in the dark working up a sweat trying to figure out what leg to put where. Practice putting on the harness in your living room or if you’re lucky enough set up a stand in your yard using a tether system.
4 – Inspect all tree stands and accessories for wear and tear. If anything is in doubt, get rid of it. I know its like throwing away money but it’s alot cheaper than a trip to the emergency room.
5 – Do not alter any safety harness. Yes there is a reason that those straps go around your legs. Don’t cut off those leg straps thinking it will just make things easier. Easier to possibly get strangled by your harness is more like it.
6 – If you are using a fixed position stand, add new ratchet straps every year. Don’t think about it-just add new straps.
7 – Make sure other people know where you are going and approximately what time you will be getting out of your stand. Maybe arrange to call in or text someone at a certain time. And no – the green house on the farm down the road isn’t an address. Make sure that people know the actual location where you are so if emergency help has to be called they can get to you as soon as possible.
I’m sure that there are many, many other safety tips out there, so please feel free to comment. It never hurts to have too much information when it comes to safety.
I wish all of you a great season!
Visit John and JoAnn Herbert at www.facebook.com/DoubleJOutdoors for hunting videos and product reviews.