16 Best Tree Stands in 2020 (Buying Guide)

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Summit Treestands 81120 Viper SD Climbing Treestand,...
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Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II Climbing Tree Stand
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Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II Climbing Tree Stand
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Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II Climbing Tree Stand
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Guide Gear 18' Jumbo Ladder Tree Stand
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If you are looking to buy the best tree stand possible, you have arrived at the right place. This article will walk you through finding a tree stand that meets your requirements.

In order to make sure you get one of the best tree stands for your money, we have tested and reviewed 16 tree stands, including climbing, ladder, and hang-on tree stands. We’ll also show you what to look for in a tree stand and how to use one.

Best Tree Stands Reviewed and Rated

1. Summit Viper SD

Summit Treestands 81120 Viper SD Climbing Treestand,...
  • Closed-front aluminum climbing stand
  • Suspended foam-padded seat with backrest in Mossy Oak...
  • Weighs 20 lbs. and holds up to 300 lbs. Green Utility Strap

This is easily one of the best climbing tree stands available today. Not only is it comfortable, it is also lightweight and versatile. Armed with the Summit Viper SD, you are sure to enjoy your hunting trip.

Here’s why:

Suspended Foam-Padded Seat

Every hunter’s dream is to bag that elusive animal. Sometimes this takes several hours seated or lying in the same spot. This can be quite uncomfortable, which is why you need a suspended foam-padded seat. Both the seat and backrest are padded to ensure your comfort regardless of how long you sit waiting for your prey.

Distinctive Camo Look

One of the key aspects of hunting is that you have to blend in with the environment so that your presence is difficult to detect. The Summer Viper stand features a distinctive camo look that keeps you concealed in the trees.

Quiet Engineering

The stand is also built to support substantial weight without squeaking to ensure that your target won’t hear you. The quiet engineering comprises sound-deadening technology with the specific function of minimizing the noise made by the tree stand. It also features custom-engineered foam that reduces the metal-on-metal noise.

Quickdraw Cable Retention 

This stand has arguably the quietest cable attachments ever. It is also easy to use, as you just have to resize it to the tree’s diameter, after which you insert the cable into the quickdraw bracket. The trigger helps secure the cable in place, which eliminates the need to use bolts, nuts, and pins.

Pros 

  • 5-year warranty
  • Very comfortable
  • Easy to set up, climb, and use
  • Quietly conceals you from your target
  • Lightweight and convenient to carry around

Cons 

  • Paint peels off easily, especially on the foot rest

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2. Summit Treestand Mini Viper SD
Summit Treestands Mini Viper SD Climbing Treestand,...
  • Closed-front aluminum climbing stand
  • Suspended foam-padded seat with backrest
  • Weighs 18 lbs. and holds up to 300 lbs.

The Viper SD line is renowned for its quality and durability. The Mini Viper is no different. It features sturdy construction that can withstand a significant amount of abuse. Other features include:

Sound Deadening Technology

Hunting in the woods requires you to have the right tools, precision, and stealth. You have to be positioned in such a way that the animal can’t hear or see you.

This is exactly what the Mini Viper has to offer with its sound deadening technology. Summit Treestands has spent years perfecting this technology to ensure that you remain concealed as you wait for your target. The deadening technology minimizes the noise by filling the critical parts with expanding foam.

Additional Features 

The Mini Viper features a retention system that is renowned for its fast and quiet cable attachments. It also comes with the RapidClimb Stirrup, which is ergonomically shaped and adjustable to fit different boot types. The stirrups are also designed to allow for easier climbing regardless of the height.

Pros

  • Weighs only 18 lbs but can support up to 300 lbs
  • Versatile
  • High-grade technical make-up
  • Safe and stable

Cons 

  • Not super comfortable for anyone over 200 pounds

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3. Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II

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Lone Wolf Hand Climber Combo II Climbing Tree Stand
  • Lightweight and full-featured; A proven performer among...
  • Fits trees 6" - 19" in diameter; Contoured foam seat pad...
  • Folds down to 5-inch packed profile; Great for packing into...

The Lone Wolf Combo II is described as the ideal hunting equipment, as it’s not only lightweight but also folds down for easy transportation. It’s the perfect tree stand, especially if you hunt in regions where the thickets and shrubs are thick.

Convenience 

As a hunter, it’s not every day that you can to pack everything you want or need before heading out. This means that you often have to sacrifice some equipment to have enough space for your essentials.

Luckily, the Combo II weighs about 17.5 lbs and folds down into a compact shape. This makes it easy to pack with your other hunting gear. Once you identify your tree, simply unfold your combo II and begin to climb.

The stand also comes with a strap that can be used for hauling gear or weapons to and from the ground. In addition to the bungee strap, there are also backpack straps to help you carry the stand.

Solid Construction 

The full stand measures 30 inches by 19.5 inches of cast aluminum. It features a unibody construction that can support up to 350 lbs. It also has a 3D camo design, which makes it undetectable to the target.

Comfort 

While hunting is a fun hobby, it takes hours of waiting in the same position. This has been made easier with the Combo II, which comes with a generous capacity platform. This means that you don’t have to adjust so much in order to position your body to get a perfect shot.

Pros 

  • Quiet cam belt
  • Folds down for easy portability
  • Can support up to 350 lbs
  • Easy to set up

Cons 

  • The seat could be bigger 

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4. Summit Tree Stand 180 Max SD 

Summit Treestands 180 Max SD Climbing Treestand, Mossy...
  • Includes all necessary pads, hardware, ropes and straps
  • Constructed of aluminum
  • Weight limit: 350lbs

The 180 Max SD is a favorite for many hunters, especially those who use crossbows. It also works fine with a gun, but crossbow hunters tend to blend in better.

This model is loaded with numerous features that make it an ideal contender for the best climbing tree stand. It’s also slightly more expensive compared to its competitors.

Weight Capacity 

Do you weigh more than 250 pounds and enjoy hunting, but can’t find a tree stand to comfortably support your weight? Worry no more, for the 180 Max SD can easily support up to 350 lbs.

This not only makes it ideal for heavy hunters, but also for hunters who prefer to carry up all their hunting gear. In addition, the 180 Max SD is equipped with SummmitLokt technology, which ensures your stand has excellent rigidity and maximum strength.

Stealth 

This stand is designed with a camouflage pattern and a round seat that allows you to change positions effortlessly. The stand also has a larger platform compared its competitors, which lets you stretch your legs.

To ensure you remain concealed, the manufacturer added a foam-filled aluminum frame. With this foam-filled frame, you can turn or change positions without scaring away your target.

Pros 

  • Sufficient room to stretch your legs
  • 350 lb weight capacity
  • Allows for maximum freedom
  • Safe and secure

Cons 

  • Quite heavy at 23 lbs
  • May damage the trees it’s attached to

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5. Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II

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Lone Wolf Sit & Climb Combo II Climbing Tree Stand
  • Pivoting sit & climb bar provides easy climbing
  • 2-panel contoured foam seat pad provides all-day comfort
  • Features the full-size 30" x 19.5" platform with distinctive...

This is a product of Lone Wolf, a leading manufacturer of portable treestands. It offers comfort and convenience without sacrificing performance.

It also features a unique pivoting sit and climb bar, which makes it easy to climb. In addition, there is a padded seat to ensure that you do not get numb from sitting all day.

Spacious Seat 

The Lone Wolf Sit & Climb combines a full-size platform with a spacious seat where you can rest as you wait for your target.

The manufacturer has placed a lot of emphasis on the comfort of the hunter. They added a contoured foam cushion on the seat and a convenient bow holder designed to fit different types of bows. This will free your hands without having to worry about dropping your bow.

Sturdy Construction 

At 21 lbs the Lone Wolf Sit & Climb isn’t the lightest or the heaviest, but it can support approximately 350 lbs. This should be enough to support you and your gear. The stand has a slim profile that will not take up much space in your pack.

Safety and Stealth 

The seat is tan and brown to make it virtually invisible among the trees. However, your ability to camouflage is hindered by the silver frame. From afar, the grey platform can be mistaken for tree bark.

As for safety features, the Sit & Climb comes with a pivoting climbing bar as well as a six-point safety harness.

Pros 

  • Easy to set up
  • Super comfortable
  • Slim profile
  • High weight capacity
  • Ideal for mobile hunters
  • Larger room for leg stretching

Cons 

  • Less features compared to other models in the same price range
  • Some of the colors don’t blend in with the environment

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Best Ladder Tree Stand 

6. Guide Gear 18” Ladder Tree Stand 

The Guide Gear Jumbo stand is quite versatile and comes with decent features. Perhaps the most notable of these features is its 18-foot height. Once set up, the Guide gear stand is positioned 18 feet above the ground, which puts it in the ideal position to spot your target from afar.

Durability

For a tree stand with such height, durability is often an issue. Fortunately, the Guide gear tree stand is made of sturdy materials and steel construction, ensuring an extended life. The impeccable construction and welding allows it to support up to 300 lbs.

Design 

The design similar to that of any other tree stand. The main difference is the camo design. The choice of colors will limit you to specific hunting environments.

In addition, the stand comes with a flip-up shooting rail for stability while aiming. You also get a flip-up adjustable footrest for changing the position of your feet.

Comfort 

Sitting on an elevated platform gives you an advantage but it tends to be uncomfortable, especially if you sit in the same position for a long time. To ensure your comfort, Guide opted for a seat that measures 13.25 x 26.25 x 19 inches. This allows you to spot and shoot your target while seated or standing.

Pros 

  • Steel construction
  • Full foot platform
  • Padded armrests
  • Full-body safety harness
  • Weight capacity: 300 pounds

Cons 

  • No reclining seat

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7. X-Stand Treestands 18” Two-Person Hunting Tree Stand

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X-Stand Treestands The Comrade X 18' Two Man...
  • Features the jaw safety system allowing you to secure it...
  • Features an exclusive 73" w x 18" d, v-shaped platform for...
  • Two independent seats, 10" w x 16" d

Although hunting on your own allows for better stealth, it’s more fun with a hunting partner. The X-Stand Comrade Ladder Stand tries to make this possible with its two-man stand.

Great Platform Design

This is said to be the best two-man stand due to its curved platform. It also has a v-shaped design that not only improves your viewing angles, but also comes with a shared center for your gear. The platform offers a wide range of viewing angles as well.

Safety Features 

To support the weight of two hunters, the X-stand comes with 4-point safety harnesses. Combine this with its magnificent construction and you get a tree stand that can support up to 500 pounds. In addition, the tree stand is equipped with the gripping jaws feature to help it lock around the tree trunk. This creates a safe and stable platform to wait for your target.

Pros 

  • Wide viewing angles
  • Can support up to 500 lbs
  • Full body safety harness
  • A shared center for hunting gear

Cons 

  • Quite heavy at 125lbs

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8. Ameristep 15-Feet Ladder Stand

Ameristep 15-Feet Two Man Ladder Stand (Camo)
  • Ul Grizzly 2 Person 15' Ladderstand Li Anit Sinking Tamper...
  • Ameristep Grizzly Two Person 15' Ladderstand Model Number...
  • Tma Certified Comes With Two Harnessess 500 Lb Weight...

The Ameristep ladder stand is one of the lightest two man stands, and it’s surprisingly comfortable. Since it was designed for two people, you can always hunt alone and instead use the extra space to secure your hunting gear. It has a 15-foot ladder, which is more than enough height to get a perfect view of your target.

Comfort Features

Every hunter wants a tree stand that can support their weight for a long time without feeling unstable or uncomfortable. To achieve this, the Ameristep comes with padded seats and a sinking tamper bar as well as a padded shooting rail. It has two harnesses that can support a total load of 500 lbs.

Cost and Value

This stand is reasonably priced compared to similar models. It is, however, quite bulky. This means that you have to pick out a spot, attach it, and leave it there rather than carrying it around. If you can’t leave it, you can always disassemble it and fit it in your bedded truck.

Pros 

  • Flip-up shooting rail that doubles as a gun rest or a place to rest your head
  • 500-lb weight limit
  • Easy to assemble and disassemble
  • Spacious
  • Padded for comfort

Cons 

  • The straps provided are not sufficient

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9. Millennium Treestands L110

Millennium Treestands L110 Ladder Stand, 21 ft.
  • HUNTING MADE COMFORTABLE: The Millennium L110 Ladder Stand...
  • SAFELINK: Millennium is committed to hunter safety, which is...
  • ADJUSTABLE PLATFORM: The L110 double rigged Ladder Stand is...

The Millennium L110 is a sturdy ladder stand perfect for hunters who like to wait in their posts all day in hopes of getting that elusive 10-point buck.

This stand is built for comfort and features a revolutionary polytec construction. It comes with features that perfectly blend in with the environment. For example, it has a stretch-free fabric that does not absorb water or scent, so your target will not smell you from afar. The seat is also designed to be quiet even when aiming.

Durability 

The millennium L110 is built for durability. It features a strong steel construction that offers more than just support and stability. Each part is welded perfectly to ensure that the stand can handle the extra weight while maintaining that seamless look.

To top it off, the tree stand features a powder coat finish said to last longer than standard paint. The stand also comes with a rigid double rail ladder, which offers much-needed support, stability, and grip as you climb up and down.

Safety Features 

The most notable safety feature is the adjustable tree brace that helps secure the stand. Being adjustable means that you get to choose the size of the tree.

It also has a stabilizing strap that tethers the stand to the tree trunk to ensure that the stand does not wobble. Thanks to the double-size platform, you have enough room to move around as you wait for your target.

Pros 

  • Designed to be quiet
  • Height customizable from 8-21 feet
  • Lightweight construction for easy portability
  • Easy to set up

Cons 

  • Does not have a stabilizer bar

 

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10. Big Dog BDL-1050 

Big Dog BDL-1050 17.5' Stadium Serie
  • Patented: serial no. 29/268.658
  • Free blind included, dual rail ladder construction, padded...
  • Curved 53" x 13" foot platform; curved 37" x 16" padded seat

The Big Dog tree stand features a unique design that makes it ideal for big game hunting. It has a rugged build that guarantees that it will last for a long time. In addition, the seat can support two hunters, though you can also use the extra space to secure your gear while solo.

Space

Bowhunters often experience the frustration of trying to find the best angle to shoot, especially if you are cramped in a tight space. Fortunately, with the Big Dog tree stand you don’t have to worry about space. This is because the stand has a stadium seating design that curves around the trunk to give you a better angle of attack.

It is primarily designed for two, which makes it a comfortable tree stand for a lone hunter. However, even if you decide to use it with your hunting buddy, the stand has enough space for optimal mobility.

Safety 

With a weight capacity of 500 lbs, it’s guaranteed to support the weight of you and your buddy unless you both weigh more than 250 lbs. If you want to use it alone, there is lots of space for your gear. Furthermore, the stand comes with two fall arrest systems plus a safety harness.

Comfort 

In terms of comfort, the Big Dog has outdone itself with padded armrests, a padded shooting rail, and a padded seat.

However, there is one area that’s unimpressive: Platform size. The manufacturer tried to maximize the size of the platform, which made the seat shallower. This means that it is a bit inconvenient when trying to slouch.

Pros 

  • Weight capacity of 500 lbs
  • Safety harness
  • Offers a better angle of attack

Cons 

  • Shallow seat
  • The shooting rail is quite low

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11. River Edge RE631

Rivers Edge RE631 Relax Wide Ladder Stand,Black
  • Comfortable, ergonomic TearTuff mesh seat and backrest for...
  • Padded armrests and shooting rail
  • Crossbeams under seat provide added stability

As I said earlier, hunting requires a lot of precision and stealth. Laying on the ground is good for stealth but it’s also easy to give up your position due to the wind blowing your scent.

The River Edge RE631 will get you elevated so you have a better view of the terrain and so your scent is blown further away.

Safety and Comfort

The Rivers Edge stand comes with a full-body harness. It weighs 54 lbs, which is reasonable compared to its competitors that weigh over 90 lbs. This makes it easier to move around and set up.

It comes with a comfortable TearTuff mesh seat that is well-padded for ultimate comfort as you wait for your target. The seat also has a backrest in case you get tired and want to rest.

Reliability 

According to the manufacturer, it can support up to 300 lbs and is certified by the Tree stand Manufacturer’s Association. It also has a padded armrest and crossbeams to provide sufficient stability as you take your shot. It is also rust-resistant.

Pros 

  • Comfortable and well-priced
  • Ideal for larger-than-average hunters
  • Rust resistant

Cons 

  • The seat is quite small
  • The removable shooting rest isn’t as secure as expected
  • Takes two people to set up

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Best Hang-On Tree Stands 

12. Lone Wolf Alpha II

Lone Wolf Alpha Hang On II Treestand
  • The benchmark by which all other hang on treestands are...
  • Lightweight, roomy, deadly quiet, and easy to use; Fits...
  • Features a convenient self-leveling seat and platform;...

The Lone Wolf Alpha tree stand combines made-by-bowhunters ingenuity with state-of-the-art technology to offer the perfect platform for diehard hunters. Not only does this hang-on tree stand offer versatility and security in all temperatures, it provides a quiet environment to wait for that elusive deer.

Designed for Quiet 

It’s engineered to be a silent hunting partner. This is attributed to its solid design with no hollow chambers. This, in turn, muffles sounds as you move around.

Heavy-Duty Construction

If you have trouble hunting in the rain, this might be exactly what you need. The Lone Wolf hang-on stand has a secure non-slip grip that ensures you maintain a stable position regardless of the weather. With this tree stand, you have an advantage in areas where the weather is unpredictable.

Safety Features

Don’t be fooled by its compact naked profile, as it comes with several safety features to ensure that you are safe and secure. Its main safety feature is the 6-point Fall Arrest System, which will provide support as you scope your target.

Comfort

From afar, the Lone Wolf Alpha seems quite small and bare. However, it’s surprisingly comfortable. It measures 30 inches by 19.5 inches, which is more than enough room to move around. The stand also has self-leveling capabilities and a unique E-Z hook accessory.

Ease of Use 

Weighing only 14 lbs, the Lone Wolf Alpha can easily be carried around as you scout for the perfect location to pitch camp. Since it has a compact profile and is lightweight, the Lone Wolf Alpha doesn’t take up much space in your gear. It’s also easy to set up and offers a stable surface to aim and shoot.

Pros 

  • 350-lb weight rating
  • Distinctive camo design
  • Large countered seat pad
  • Backpack straps included
  • Lightweight

Cons 

  • The buckles are quite noisy

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13. Millennium Treestand M100U

Millennium Treestands M100U Ultralite Tree Stand
  • LIGHTWEIGHT MOBILITY: The M100U is 20% lighter than the...
  • SAFELINK: Millennium is committed to hunter safety, which is...
  • LARGE PLATFORM: Having the room necessary to position...

The M100U sheds 20 percent of the weight off the original M100, which makes it easier to fold flat. The M100U is designed with safety in mind, as it is made of All-Aluminum triangular tubing. This allows it to support a maximum of 300 lbs. It also features welded construction for additional strength.

It weighs about 14 lbs, which should be easy to carry as you hike to your preferred hunting ground.

Ease of Use 

This stand is easy to set up. It features a chain-linked metal receiver that locks in by simply dropping the metallic piece into the chain-linked receiver.

The light weight also comes in handy during the setup process. You start by positioning the five to ten receivers in the hunting area and then you can lock in the tree stand.

Comfort 

The stand has a large 20-inch by 28-inch platform that is comfortable for sitting and standing. The entire setup is super quiet, especially the seat, which folds up with no fuss so you can place it in the perfect position for a shot. Since it’s a big platform, you can always take a nap when you get tired.

Pros 

  • Sturdy stand
  • Lightweight & comfortable
  • Easy to carry and set up

Cons

  • Doesn’t have a footrest
  • Boots squeak against the paint

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Tree Stand Buying Guide

Best tree stand

Hunting on a tree stand has something special to it that you won’t experience when hunting from a ground blind. It brings an element of excitement and accuracy because you do not have to try hard to conceal yourself.

I have walked you through the best hunting tree stands in various categories, and now it is time to focus on the factors to consider when you start shopping.

There are so many types of tree stands out there, and not all are worth the money. Choosing a tree stand for the first time is always difficult.

Fortunately, you can ease the process by equipping yourself with the right knowledge. I’ll start by discussing the various types of hunting stands so that you become familiar with each of them.

Types Of Tree Stands

As you’ve seen from the reviews section, hunting tree stands are available in various types. Each type has its own characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages.

Let’s jump straight to the most common types and see what they have to offer.

Climbing Tree Stands

This is the best climbing tree stand in the woods

The most common type of hunting stand is the climbing tree stand. Stands in this category have a place to sit on and a place that supports your legs. You can chill comfortably on this type of stand as you wait for game.

Climbing tree stands are not bulky, meaning you can just backpack to your favorite hunting spot. From my experience, climbing tree stands are easy to install on trees with straight trunks. The tree you choose should have no or few obstructing branches.

Honestly, getting this unit up a tree takes a lot of skill, but I am sure you’ll get used to it. Some units weigh up to 30 lbs but as long as you can climb a tree, you will be able to carry it along.

The other thing you should know is that climbing tree stands can be secured to the tree trunk using a chain or a cable. I prefer using a cable, but either will work perfectly fine.

A good tree stand should accommodate you without any fuss. You should set it in a way that will give you good visibility. Remember that you will be aiming from the stand, so you should be in a position to take odd shots.

You should also place the climbing tree stand in a place that can’t be spotted easily. Remember that animals have strong sight and sense of smell as part of their defense mechanisms. Avoid placing it on the bare side of a tree because some animals could notice it.

The good thing about this type of stand is that it’s easy to move. Sometimes, you can climb a tree and fail to get the perfect view. In such cases, you’ll just dismount the stand and climb a different tree. I always advise hunters to be careful when dismounting climbers.

Although climber tree stands have a lot of advantages, there are a few drawbacks to highlight. With climbers, you can only set it up in trees that you can climb easily. This means that most of the time you will settle for trees that are farther away from the intended target.

The other disadvantage is that you will have a lot of things to carry in your hunting backpack. This includes the climber, recurve bow, and gear. The only way to tackle this is by downsizing the amount of equipment.

All in all, I can say that climbers are the most comfortable deer stands. You will need to practice a lot if you are going to spend time hunting from climbing tree stands.

Ladder Stands

Best ladder stand reviewed in the woods

The other common type of stand you can choose from is the ladder stand. I have had my fair share of ladder stands and I can say that they are pretty cool. The only problem is that you can usually only set them up on private property. Some states do allow them on public land, but there is a risk that they will be stolen.

One of the things I really like about ladder stands is that they are comfortable and easy to use. A good example is the X-Stand Ladder Stand. It offers incredible levels of comfort. On top of that, it comes with the Jaw Safety System, which allows hunters to secure it from the ground.

If climbing trees is not your cup of tea, do not hesitate to opt for a ladder stand. In fact, they are considered ideal for people who suffer from arthritis and bad knees.

As long as you are sure that no one will steal your ladder stand and you are in an area where it is legal, you can set it up permanently. They are ideal for areas with high deer traffic. Most hunters like to place them on food plots, transition areas, and on the edge of bedding areas.

Ladder stands have a platform and a seat attached on top so you will be comfortable as you wait for game. The other good thing about ladder stands is that they can be set on crooked trees.

The only downside is that they are cumbersome. In fact, installation can only be done by two people.

Hang-On Tree stands

Best hang on tree stand

Hang-on tree stands are ideal for hunters who are looking for versatility. These stands work pretty well on all types of trees. You don’t have to install a hang-on stand on a straight tree, as they come with features that enable you to stay safe and comfortable even in the least ideal situations.

Some of the best hang-on tree stands offer adjustment capabilities to ensure that you are stable and have extra grip for safety purposes.

Just like other types of tree stands, hang-on stands come with a sturdy seat that should be attached to the tree with the help of a chain or strap.

Hunters prefer these stands because they are lightweight and can be set up in tight places; you can hunt comfortably in heavy cover. When using this type of tree stand, you can use small ladder sections or screw-in style steps to ascend the tree.

Hang-on tree stands are also known as fixed-position tree stands because they are generally left on the tree.

Tripod or Quad Pod Tree Stands

The other type of hunting tree stand you can find on the market is the tripod or quad pod stand. These are great for providing a 360 degree view.

They offer what most tree stands cannot: With these types of stand, you can hunt even on open ground where there are no trees. You can place it on the edge of the field or in the open. Most people use these kinds of tree stands when hunting hogs or deer.