Tree Stand Safety
Tree Stand Safety — Hunt Safe, Hunt Smart
- Read the manufacturer’s instructions. Replace worn/missing parts.
- Use a full-body harness with a foot strap to relieve harness leg pressure.
- Use a "lifeline" or safety rope that is secured at base of the tree or stand and to the tree just above your head when sitting in the stand. Stay connected to a lifeline from the time you leave the ground to the time you get back down.
- 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.
- Once secured in your stand, use a haul line to raise/lower 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.
- Carry emergency equipment (knife, phone, flashlight, whistle) in your pockets at all times, not in your pack.
- Tell someone where you will be hunting and when you will return.
In addition to the Tree Stand Safety steps above, it’s important to know the health and species of the tree you choose to support your stand. In New York State there are a handful of tree species that are currently being impacted by non-native pests and pathogens that should be avoided. The most common trees that are either dead or are in the process of dying are: Ash species (Fraxinus spp.), Butternut (Juglans cineria), American beech (Fagus grandifolia), Eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis), and American elm (Ulmus americana).