Tree Stand Safety

Hunting Regulations Icon New York Hunting

  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions. Check stands for worn/missing parts (including straps and chains) every season. Replace accordingly.
  • Use a full-body harness with a foot strap (to relieve harness leg pressure and avoid suspension trauma). Stay connected to a lifeline from the time you leave the ground to the time you get back down.
  • Use a “lifeline” or safety rope that is secured at the base of the tree or stand and to the tree just above your head when sitting in the stand.
  • Attach the tether from your full-body harness to the lifeline using a carabiner and prusik knot, which easily slides up and down the lifeline, keeping you connected at all times.
  • Once you are secured in your stand, use a strong haul line to raise/lower your unloaded implements and quiver. Do not tie the haul line around the trigger or trigger guard. Haul unloaded guns, bows, and cocked (but unloaded) crossbows pointed down.
  • Tell a reliable person where you will be hunting and when you will return. A map showing your stand location makes it easier to find you if you do not return on time.
  • Carry emergency equipment — such as a knife, cell phone, flashlight, and whistle — in your pockets at all times, not in your pack hanging in the tree.