Hunter

Best Climbing Tree Stand 2020 – Top 6 Stands and Seats

Best Overall

Lone Wolf Alpha Hang On II Treestand
Available at Amazon
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Most Popular

Summit Treestands 81120 Viper
Available at Amazon
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Best Premium Choice

Millennium Treestands Monster Hang On Treestand
Available at Amazon
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Everyone has their own unique hunting style. Some hunters like to get down and dirty, chasing their prey through bushes and pastures, while others prefer to perch upon a vantage point and stake their prey like hawks. It is for the latter that we write this article.

A good-quality climbing tree stand is essential for any hunter who hunts this way. The stand must be sturdy and reliable. Moreover, it must be as silent and as visually unremarkable as everything else around it so that it doesn’t scare the prey away.

Buying the right tree stand will often be the difference between going back with a healthy score or going back empty-handed. You also want to be in good shape when you return and not aching or bruised up because the stand gave in and let you fall. To assist you in finding the right stand, we have picked out some of the best climbing tree stands on the market.

In a hurry? Here are the best climbing tree stands on the market today.

Best Overall: Lone Wolf Alpha Hang On II Treestand
“light, steady, spacious and incredibly quiet”


Most Popular: Summit Treestands 81120 Viper
“Parts of the tubing are stuffed with expanding foam that absorbs sound and keeps noise to a minimum”


Best Premium Choice: Millennium Treestands Monster Hang On Treestand
“ideal gear for serious hunters who value quality, comfortability and easy access”


Best Budget Choice: Summit Treestands The Stump
“one of the most comfortable and cheap tree stands”


Best for Larger People: Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II
“The seat is also large and very comfortable, making it the perfect choice for larger people”


Best for Beginners: Guide Gear Deluxe Hang On Tree Stand
“a number of safety features to ensure security”


Best Overall: Lone Wolf Alpha Hang On II Treestand

Reasons to buy:

  • Premium-quality build
  • Very quiet setup and operation
  • Ergonomically contoured padding seat
  • 3D camouflage platform
  • Light and sturdy cast aluminum build
Reasons not to buy:

  • Accessory hooks not included

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There are countless tree stand manufacturers on the market, each trying to capture more of the market share through unique features and innovations. However, only a few manufacturers are as reliable or trusted as Lone Wolf. Lone Wolf equipment is considered to be the standard in the tree stand hunting community.

Lone Wolf is the manufacturer of premium equipment and, its flagship variant, the Alpha Hang On II does not fall short of this description.

This stand delivers superior security and great versatility to the avid bowhunter. Built on the company’s unique cast aluminum platform, this tree stand is light, steady, spacious and incredibly quiet.

The stand incorporates a self-leveling platform and seat, so users don’t have to mess around with adjustments when setting it up. What makes the setup easier is the tree stand’s compatibility with the EZ Hang Hook accessory. This enables the stand to be preset at multiple locations for quick repeated setup.

With thick contoured padding, the seat is optimized for comfort. You can sit in it all day and not feel the stress or the strain that accompanies many other tree stands. You are most likely gonna sit there hours-on-end, so it better be comfortable and in terms of comfortability it’s one of the best.

The comfortable seat along with a considerable weight capacity of 350 lbs. makes this tree stand one of the most ergonomic in the market. It is also one that will be suitable for a larger variety of people.

Even without any particular patterns lining up the stand, it is still colored and designed in a manner that ensures a great amount of camouflage. Hard to spot when fastened to a tree, the Alpha offers superior concealment through its design choice and noise-reducing system.

Lone Wolf’s offset bracket also allows the stand to be attached to any tree of your choice regardless of the tree’s shape.


Most Popular: Summit Treestands 81120 Viper

Reasons to buy:

  • Good noise reduction with DeadMetal
  • Easy setup and fastening
  • Adjustable stirrups for climbing
  • Full-body harness
  • SummitLokt locks the joints in place for maximum steadiness and safety
  • One of the most popular treestands
Reasons not to buy:

  • The tree stand is a bit unwieldy when folded

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Summit Treestands is among the few leading and highly trusted names in tree stands production. The company is renowned for designing tree stands that excel in comfort, noise suppression, concealment and stability. They are also some of the most durable stands on the market.

This model, codenamed the Viper, is an aluminum tree stand with a closed front for added security. The structure is sturdy enough to withstand up to 300 lbs. in body weight while only weighing 20 lbs. itself. The stand features a padded seat, backrest and armrests. All of these are covered in a mossy oak camo design so it blends well with the surrounding trees.

Summit gives the utmost attention to minimizing sound, especially that which is generated by the aluminum tubing in the structure. The stand employs sound reduction technology that Summit calls DeadMetal. Parts of the tubing are stuffed with expanding foam that absorbs sound and keeps noise to a minimum.

The Viper is extremely easy to use and set up. The company’s QuickDraw system redefines the way you set up tree stands. The cable retention system is fast and quiet, requiring simple steps to insert and adjust the cable around the tree and lock the mechanism in place. Installation doesn’t need nuts and bolts and is fairly quiet.

This and all other tree stands from Summit also come with their RapidClimb mechanism. The stirrups are engineered for maximum comfort and stability. They can be adjusted to fit any boot so climbing up becomes an effortless task.


Best Premium Choice: Millennium Treestands Monster Hang On Treestand

Reasons to buy:

  • Ergonomic ComfortMAX seat
  • Many adjustability options
  • Steady bottom platform
  • SafeLink ascending and descending mechanism
  • The foldable seat gives hunters more room to take the shot
Reasons not to buy:

  • The seat is too large for some users

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The Monster Treestand is another premium offering from a premium hunting goods manufacturer. Millennium Treestands is known for designing their gear with the greatest attention to comfort.

The Monster Treestand is the ideal gear for serious hunters who value quality, comfortability and easy access. It’s a bit more expensive than others – but you sure do get your moneys worth. If you hunt a lot and this is within your budget, then it’s definitely one of the best climbing tree stands you can get.

The tree stand features Millennium’s ComfortMAX sling seat. The seat is very comfortable and does not comprise of the conventional padding on a hard surface. This design choice allows the fabric to mold itself to the shape of the body, providing long-lasting comfort. The fabric is also very breathable so hunters won’t feel the effects of extending sitting.

This is an ergonomically designed stand and features a lot of adjustability options to cater to the different body types of the users. The height of the seat can be adjusted as necessary. It can be adjusted along trees that lean up to 15 degrees. The option of adjusting the seat for maximum comfort according to the shape of the tree isn’t something you see on a lot of other tree stands.

The bottom platform is steady and made from sturdy metal. It extends to a considerable length and features a foot stand on the edge so hunters can put their feet up for a bit if the day gets long. Also included in the stand is Millennium’s SafeLink. SafeLink is a 35ft long rope with a Prusik knot and a carabiner. With SafeLink, you can easily and quickly climb up to and down from the tree stand.


Best Budget Choice: Summit Treestands The Stump

Reasons to buy:

  • Inexpensive tree stand for small animal hunting
  • Weatherproof construction
  • Noise-reducing design
  • Easy to set up
  • Very comfortable seat
Reasons not to buy:

  • Not suitable for longer usage

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Summit Treestands returns with another reliable but relatively barebones tree stand. The Stump is a small and inexpensive stand that Summit markets to the budget-conscious hunter. The compact and versatile stand is excellent for short usage, light hunting and for reconnaissance and surveillance.

The Stump comprises of just a seat which can be attached around a tree. The seat is made from powder-coated steel. The powder coating is weatherproof and enhances the Stump’s durability. Unlike other inexpensive offerings, this tree stand won’t deteriorate or compromise on its structural integrity over time. The stand also has a shot-free design and is incredibly quiet.

Despite its relatively small form factor, the seat is surprisingly sturdy. It can take on a lot of weight which we wouldn’t have expected from a seat this small. Measuring at 18-inch x 16-inch, the Stump can take on a maximum weight of 300 lbs. This is the same as Summit premium models. This affordable tree stand may not offer additional features to enhance comfort, but it does its job well.

The Stump is a tree stand for ground hunting. Users have found it to provide a great advantage when hunting for smaller game such as turkeys, waterfowl, and a range of small ground animals. Like other Summit stands, there are certain aspects of its functionality which the Stump does not compromise on. These include noise reduction, portability, ease of use and ease of setting it up.

Summit features its lauded noise dampening technology along with an automatically folding seat and rubber shock absorbers. Because of these design choices, the Stump becomes one of the most comfortable and cheap tree stands we have tried. It also offers a lot of camouflage.

Best for Larger People: Lone Wolf Wide Sit & Climb Combo II

Reasons to buy:

  • Comfortable seat and backrest with contoured padding
  • Easy-pivoting climbing mechanism
  • Noise-reducing technology
  • Large full-sized bottom platform
  • 3D camouflage design
  • Can hold up to 350 lbs
Reasons not to buy:

  • Usage takes some getting used to

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We have already discussed how Lone Wolf sets the standard for other tree stands. Its premium offerings excel in almost every aspect, from comfort to convenience to performance. With the Sit and Climb combo, we see what the company can achieve when it pushes the limits of comfort and versatility.

The Sit and Climb is a high-quality tree stand with a plush, thickly-padded seat and backrest on Lone Wolf’s signature bottom platform. The platform boasts the company’s signature sturdy aluminum 3D camouflage design and feels as steady as a Lone Wolf stand should. At first glance, this tree stand looks nothing short of an armchair you would spend an evening on the patio in.

This seat can hold up to 350 lbs, which is more than almost any other tree stand. The seat is also large and very comfortable, making it the perfect choice for larger people.

The seat with contoured padding that we reviewed on the company’s previous model was extremely comfortable and half the size of the seat featured on the Sit and Climb. Not to mention that the model we reviewed earlier did not feature a backrest. Building on the performance of that relatively basic model, we can make a good guess about the comfort this pumped-up model will provide.

The seat makes longer hunting sessions a breeze. Hunters have vouched for its effectiveness and noted that it allowed them to stay up for more than half the day without feeling any stress or strain on the body. The other part of the advertised ‘sit’ and ‘climb’ design is the company’s unique pivoting system that allows users to climb up and down from the tree stand without considerable effort.


Best for Beginners: Guide Gear Deluxe Hang On Tree Stand

Reasons to buy:

  • Affordable price
  • Great value for money
  • Sturdy steel construction
  • Weatherproof coating
  • Backrest and armrests
Reasons not to buy:

  • Padding is not thick enough
  • A bit noisy

View at Amazon

Guide Gear is a manufacturer of cost-effective hunting and camping gear. Their products offer good value for money so they are preferred by new hunters and adventurers. The Deluxe Tree Stand is among the company’s more premium offerings but is still affordable enough for hunters on a budget.

Guide Gear Deluxe Tree Stand is an entry-level tree stand that is reliable and easy to set up. The stand does not offer many of the premium features we have covered in more expensive stands above. However, it offers tremendous quality and performance for the asking price. The build quality is extremely sturdy and can accept a maximum weight of 300 lbs. This is the same as more expensive models.

The tree stand comes with a padded seat. Although the padding that lines the seat isn’t very thick, the Guide Gear Deluxe still has much to offer in the way of comfort. The stand comes with a padded backrest and armrests which distribute the user’s weight better. Users can sit comfortably for longer and even relax their feet on an elevated footrest.

The stand is crafted out of sturdy steel tubing and coated with a green powder coating to protect the frame from rust and corrosion. This makes it an ideal tree stand for all kinds of weather. Guide Gear also packs it up with a number of safety features to ensure security. These include a FAS safety harness among a selection of other accessories.

The manufacturer ships this tree stand with everything you would need to set it up, including nuts, ratchet straps and harnesses. This means that the stand is good to go straight out of the box. This is convenient for the user, and a welcome feature seeing as many tree stands need additional material to be purchased for setup.


How to Choose the Best Climbing Tree Stand for You

Selecting the best climbing tree stand isn’t too complicated a task. You only need to know which factors matter most in a tree stand so you can assess these features. As you go higher up and consider more expensive tree stands, you will see that many come with a plethora of features.

You don’t necessarily need all the bells and whistles more expensive tree stands come with, but there are few features consistent in all tree stands that you can’t do without. The better a tree stand does in providing these features at an attractive price, the better the chances that it will prove to be a good fit for you.

In addition to the primary considerations that we are going to cover below, you must also ask yourself what you need the tree stand for and what you need it to do. As you list down your requirements, you will become more aware of offerings that fulfill those particular requirements. The following are some features to assess regardless of what your particular needs for the stand are.

Safety

As far as purchase considerations go, this is one of the most important. When using a tree stand, you will be suspended a good number of feet above the ground. Therefore, safety is of paramount importance. The stand you select must be able to accept your body weight as well as the weight of your hunting gear.

A flimsy tree stand that you purchased because it was cheap, or you were getting a good deal on it, isn’t worth the money if it will fail under the weight. Before purchasing a stand, get the feel of its construction. Assess how sturdy the bottom platform is and how well the seat holds up.

When purchasing online, it is a good idea to browse forums for user reviews and expert comments on a particular stand’s reliability and performance. Most experts recommend stands with a 4-point fall arrest system as they are the safest in the market. They equally divide your weight, so the stand doesn’t give in under it.

Weight

We don’t mean the weight of the tree stand itself but the weight it can accept. All tree stands come with a maximum weight capacity. This should be an important consideration for anyone who doesn’t want the stand to fail on its first rodeo.

Consider your weight and the maximum weight capacity of the tree stand you are purchasing. Although many tree stands come with a minimum weight capacity of 300 lbs., some cheaper stands come with less. It must also be noted that many cheaper stands falsely advertise a weight capacity of 300 lbs. so you must do your research thoroughly.

When considering the maximum weight capacity of a stand, consider not only your weight but the weight of all the equipment that you will be bringing along with you. For example, if you are going deer hunting, you will probably have a considerable weight of additional supplies, which must be accounted for.

Comfort

Depending on what you are hunting, you could be spending anywhere between a couple of hours to a whole day in the tree stand. If it’s a couple of hours, you might not consider comfort to be an important consideration. However, if you have to spend the day, this suddenly becomes a primary consideration in a tree stand.

You want your tree stand to be comfortable so that at the end of the day, you come back with the game but not with a sore body. As a rule of thumb, the cheaper a tree stand is, the less comfortable it’s going to be. That being said, there are several affordable options that do a great job of balancing comfort and performance.

Some renowned tree stand manufacturers also offer an affordable version of their gear that features the same level of quality and performance. They are also built ergonomically to reduce stress and maximize comfort at their relative price points. It is best to check out reviews like ours before making your purchase to get a better idea of factors such as comfort.

Portability

All the above considerations are important, but they come into effect after you’ve found the sweet spot for your hunt and have set up the stand on the tree of your choice. However, you also have to consider that you have to get there and find the spot first.

When you’re in the jungle, it is fairly obvious that you will have to travel a considerable distance on foot in search of game or a good vantage point. Even if the area allows for it, you can’t drive around or you risk scaring the game. Therefore, your equipment should be light and easily manageable.

Consider a tree stand that is light and folds down into a small form factor. Some tree stands might not be small enough even when folded. But if they are light and feature an effective carrying or packing system, you would be able to manage them despite their size.

Conclusion

A good tree stand will check off all the boxes in the buying guide that we have discussed. But in order to find the best tree stand, place yourself at the center of all considerations. Consider the type of hunting you will be carrying out, consider your hunting style and consider your physical limitations.

For the average hunter, we recommend the quality product offerings from Summit Treestands. The company’s premium offering, the Viper, delivers maximum comfort and reliability. It’s more affordable variant is the Stump. This provides similar reliability and quality at a much lower price, with less of the bells and whistles but more of what actually matters.

The best climbing tree stand must check off all the boxes particular to your needs. And you don’t necessarily have to consider the most expensive option to find a stand that fulfills your needs. If you have a checklist of your primary considerations, you might be surprised to find that even an affordable option fulfills them just as well as a more expensive one.