Saddle Hunting Lightweight... Huh?

footingit

Junior Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2021
Messages
32
For those saying that a saddle is slower/louder/harder to get up in than a hang-on, are you tethering to the tree the whole time when setting a hang-on? To me they seem pretty similar, you still need a climbing method and you should be tethered to the tree in both cases.
 

EGBARTSTJ

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2021
Messages
29
Ditch the sticks. Watch some videos on “one sticking”. Install a cam cleat. Practice a couple times. Bam. You’ll never want to climb a tree another way again. Only thing is you’ll want to rappel down. So add 30ft of Oplux to what
I like the idea of one stick I guess haven’t quit taken the time to look into it more than I probably should. But I guess everybody’s got there “thing” that they do. Would really like to at least give it a try at least once to see what it’s like.
 
OP
wildernessmaster

wildernessmaster

Senior Member
Joined
May 12, 2020
Messages
297
Location
Pittsboro NC
I ditched the sticks!!

Offseason I did my research and picked up one-sticking and SRT. Both kits come in under 10 lbs total and that is with some backups, secondary's etc. I could probably push them to 8 lbs if I wanted to go uber lean, and replace a lot of "rope" with amsteel (tethers, gear hangers, etc - which I am learning how to make these).

I am gonna be ditching and selling all my hang on stands, climbing sticks, harnesses etc. This IS THE WAY to go.

Overall I will probably ditch the SRT as well as I can see a lot of limitations in it especially with the trees in a lot of areas I hunt. Will probably convert the SRT kit over to a 1 stick secondary kit.

One stick superiority:
1. Actually light and mobile - also not bulky for dense woods/thickets.
2. Go as high as you want or low as you want.
3. Generally safer as you are almost always tied to the tree at least once if not twice.
4. Can be up to a 20+' height in 3 hangs.
5. NOT AS HARD AS IT seems to learn or do
6. Can go a bit cheap in places and still be safe (figure 8 vs belay device, choice of static lines, diy sticks)
7. Is potentially quieter once you get it down (fewer sticks clanging, platforms dangling, etc.)

Downsides:
1. Has some "isms" that you need to learn and become habit or you may have a tougher time or be reclimbing to get your gear down.
2. Need to learn some knots and climbing knowledge.

Gear In:
DanO Ultimate one stick
Canyon C-IV rope
GriGri+ & Petzl square 8
Kong QL
Phantom and Menace Saddle
Throw line
Amsteel
Bullman steps and ring of steps (alternative to platform that is 1/3 weight)

Gear Out:
Mantis Saddle (selling only due to its short and tight on me)
Sticks (sellng my hawks)
Hang on stands (selling all mine)
Tethrd Platform (not sure but will probably go its 3lbs vs one step, and bullman steps)
All platform harnesses, etc.
Any freaking heavy thing in my kit.

On the SRT front, it would have probably panned out to be a backup method if most of the trees in the areas I hunt not being younger growth or the areas being overgrowth. In mature older forests, I can see where you could do a few presets and truly run and gun. Unfortunately If I run and gun its so variable I may not have a limb to throw over or its too dense to not create a tangled mess.

Great advice to the person who put me on to this!!
 

Dirtbag

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
151
Location
Colorado
I love my saddle and have hunted out of them a lot but there are many times I'd rather be in a stand. The saddle is definitely better if you need to be really mobile. but if you already know where you are going to hunt its a treestand for me. I don't find saddles nearly as comfortable or as easy to shoot from. The idea that they open up more shooting angles is just marketing and is pretty comical when you watch the videos of them swinging around like Tarzan "demonstrating" the off side shots and so on. You aren't going to be able to get away with half the movement they do in a real hunting situation.

Marketing is funny. Saddles are all the rage now even though they were out 30 years ago and everyone transitioned to treestands. I think we'll see the pendulum swing again.
 

WCB

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2019
Messages
1,381
For those saying that a saddle is slower/louder/harder to get up in than a hang-on, are you tethering to the tree the whole time when setting a hang-on? To me they seem pretty similar, you still need a climbing method and you should be tethered to the tree in both cases
I use 4 lone wolf steps and in a tree with no trimming needed I can be up and hunting 5-7 minutes without rushing. I sometimes use the linesman's belt on my harness it adds seconds to the setup.
The idea that they open up more shooting angles is just marketing and is pretty comical when you watch the videos of them swinging around like Tarzan "demonstrating" the off side shots and so on. You aren't going to be able to get away with half the movement they do in a real hunting situation.
I agree. I can shoot the exact same shots as someone in a saddle and always be mostly facing the target and not having to swing around and shoot behind me.

I also keep coming back to the cold weather hunting no way a saddle would be comfortable in cold weather or in bulky clothing.
 

EGBARTSTJ

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2021
Messages
29
I’m a fan of both a stands and saddles. That being said I have seen myself leaning more towards the saddle more often than the stand. I run a phantom with 4 modded lonewolf sticks and maybe with everything I bring it’s not lighter I guess but to me it’s less bulky, so less snags and there for quicker and quieter but I can do either stand or saddle.
 

btolli

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2017
Messages
137
Location
Kentucky
I love my saddle and have hunted out of them a lot but there are many times I'd rather be in a stand. The saddle is definitely better if you need to be really mobile. but if you already know where you are going to hunt its a treestand for me. I don't find saddles nearly as comfortable or as easy to shoot from. The idea that they open up more shooting angles is just marketing and is pretty comical when you watch the videos of them swinging around like Tarzan "demonstrating" the off side shots and so on. You aren't going to be able to get away with half the movement they do in a real hunting situation.

Marketing is funny. Saddles are all the rage now even though they were out 30 years ago and everyone transitioned to treestands. I think we'll see the pendulum swing again.
I went with a saddle last year and couldn’t get comfortable in that thing. I move around so much a deer could pick me off before I would even know it’s there. I’m going to go with one of the light weight stands on the market for this year. Not much weight difference in the new stands coming out vs the saddle platforms.
 

Dirtbag

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
151
Location
Colorado
I went with a saddle last year and couldn’t get comfortable in that thing. I move around so much a deer could pick me off before I would even know it’s there. I’m going to go with one of the light weight stands on the market for this year. Not much weight difference in the new stands coming out vs the saddle platforms.
Its funny because saddle hunters and companies are buidling bigger and bigger platforms too. The positives of the saddles is they are forcing treestand companies to make lighter and lighter steps, stands and accessories. Stands are starting to get super light and I'm all about it.
 

EGBARTSTJ

Junior Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2021
Messages
29
Its funny because saddle hunters and companies are buidling bigger and bigger platforms too. The positives of the saddles is they are forcing treestand companies to make lighter and lighter steps, stands and accessories. Stands are starting to get super light and I'm all about it.
I’m right there with ya, competition is key to creativity. Everything on the market is getting better then anything anyone could have dreamed of 5 years ago.
 
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