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Tree Stand Scare

Old 11-27-2010, 06:38 PM
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Default Tree Stand Scare

I would like to explain a little scare that I had a few weeks ago from my climbing stand while deer hunting.

I want to start off by stating that this incident was operator error and in no way a problem with the stand. In fact I will not even mention the brand name of the stand in this thread.

I found a hot area that I wanted to muzzleload hunt between a bedding area and a feeding area. Set my stand up on the tree, hooked my safety harness up and climbed on up. Once I got to about 15 feet I was head level with a crotch in the tree, where the trunk split in two. I decided that would be good enough. As I was setting my gear, the thought occurred to me that if I went up another foot or so I could use the crotch in the tree as a rest for the area directly behind me. So, I moved up another foot or so.

When I set the top portion of the stand, I noticed that it was angled up more than usual due to the tree being wider at the point where it split into two. As I sat down everything was fine but when I leaned back, the top portion fell, with me in it. Luckily my feet were almost directly under my butt, so I landed on my calves and was able to scoot my back up against the tree and stand up.

After I caught my breath I realized how lucky I had been. I was also amazed at how fast it happened. Had my feet not been almost directly under me, I may have lost my balance and fallen out of the climber. I did have a full body safety harness on but I don't really want to try one out on a fall.

Just wanted to post this to remind everyone to wear a harness and pay attention to what you are doing. Had I thought about the angle of the seat for more than a second or two I would have not sat down in it.

Last edited by VAhuntr; 11-27-2010 at 06:42 PM.
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Old 11-27-2010, 06:54 PM
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I am glad you are ok
It's better to use a safety harness, and not need it, than to need it, and not have it.
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Old 11-27-2010, 07:06 PM
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Last year I had my platform drop out from under my while I was tightening the straps on my seat. I had my butt on the bar still (and my safety harness on) but it happened SOOOO fast. I almost needed scent-lok underwear that morning!

Wear a harness!
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Old 11-27-2010, 07:20 PM
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The incident made me wonder what would happen if I had a complete tree stand failure. I know the harness would stop me from falling, but then what? How would I get down? In many of the areas I hunt a cell phone is worthless.

I'm seriously considering a Rescue One safety harness for next year. They are expensive but is the only harness that gives you the option of a controlled descent if you can't get back into the stand.
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Old 11-28-2010, 10:09 AM
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I dont hunt a tree stand but if I did, I would wear a harness.
I would also make sure to test the harness out.

You said...

"I did have a full body safety harness on but I don't really want to try one out on a fall."

Im not sure what you meant, but Im going to suggest you try your harness out on a fall (on purpose). Maybe only 5-10 feet up.
High enough so you wont hit your legs on the ground when you fall but not so high that if it breaks youll hurt yourself.

After that Id practice getting down while hanging.
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Old 11-28-2010, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by MrWinkles View Post
I dont hunt a tree stand but if I did, I would wear a harness.
I would also make sure to test the harness out.

You said...

"I did have a full body safety harness on but I don't really want to try one out on a fall."

Im not sure what you meant, but Im going to suggest you try your harness out on a fall (on purpose). Maybe only 5-10 feet up.
High enough so you wont hit your legs on the ground when you fall but not so high that if it breaks youll hurt yourself.

After that Id practice getting down while hanging.
Not sure that I want to do that. From my understanding most safety harnesses are supposed to be replaced after a fall. That is the beauty of the Rescue One. It is designed to be reused. Kind of like a motorcycle helmet or a seatbelt in a car. Don't want to drop a bike or wreck a car to make sure they work.
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Old 11-28-2010, 01:39 PM
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Several designs have 'break away' stitching where the attachment strap is sewn over itself again and again that helps to stop you a bit slower than if you were on a regular tether. It would be no good to reuse. Besides that, I have know a couple people that have had the displeasure of testing their harnesses in actual falls. They said it tore the he** out of their legs, shoulders, and belly where the straps are. It's like my airbag and seat belt...I will just assume that they are going to work instead of testing them out!

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Old 11-28-2010, 02:23 PM
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Originally Posted by VAhuntr View Post
The incident made me wonder what would happen if I had a complete tree stand failure. I know the harness would stop me from falling, but then what? How would I get down? In many of the areas I hunt a cell phone is worthless.

I'm seriously considering a Rescue One safety harness for next year. They are expensive but is the only harness that gives you the option of a controlled descent if you can't get back into the stand.
I have the rescue one and love it! They are expensive but when you think about how much money you spend on equipment,WHY scrimp on the one piece of equipment that can save your life!
I am a forklift mechanic and have been thru countless classes on saftey harness',and have learned that with a standard harness if you are unable to relieve the pressure on your legs to allow blood to circulate you WILL pass out in minutes,and then your done!
No matter what type harness you use ALWAYS use them,live to hunt another day!! BE SAFE!!
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Old 11-28-2010, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by wvnimrod View Post
I have the rescue one and love it! They are expensive but when you think about how much money you spend on equipment,WHY scrimp on the one piece of equipment that can save your life!
I am a forklift mechanic and have been thru countless classes on saftey harness',and have learned that with a standard harness if you are unable to relieve the pressure on your legs to allow blood to circulate you WILL pass out in minutes,and then your done!
No matter what type harness you use ALWAYS use them,live to hunt another day!! BE SAFE!!
Can you wear the Rescue One harness under your hunting coat?
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Old 11-28-2010, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by VAhuntr View Post
Can you wear the Rescue One harness under your hunting coat?
I have worn mine under my coat,but prefer to wear it over,in a fall with it under your coat you would have to open your coat to operate the controlled decent feature!
They fit very well and have changable cover that come in differant camo patterns as well as blaze orange!
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