Bowhunting Tactics

How To Choose A Treestand

Big Parcel Small Potential

To the dismay of big property owners, their large parcels often fall short of creating the potential for a quality hunting season. On a larger property scale, habitat improvement resources are frequently stretched out and fragmented, creating holes in the potential total acres of deer habitat. Imagine a big deer hunting property 300 acres, consisting of 1/3 big mature hardwoods, 1/3 CRP, and 1/3 agriculture. In order to create a system that works to define deer movement between all 3 habitat types, the land owner is going to have to implement 10x more effort and strategy than if it were on a micro 30 acre deer hunting parcel featuring the same habitat types. Now, that 300 acre landowner might have made several improvements to his property, but if they’re spread evenly over his entire property, they are certainly not working as a system in tandem to truly benefit his hunting efforts, unless a huge amount of resources are spent. To understand more about completely improving your whitetail parcel, you'll have to know how to recognize and enhance, whitetail Habitat Dead Spots.

Micro Parcel Deer Hunting Efficiency

If you’re hoping to get the most out of your micro deer hunting parcel, a high level of efficiency should be your goal. By maximizing space, and packing improvements into one concentrated location, you can efficiently define deer movement that can be taken advantage of. Creating a system of both highly defined and highly predictable daily movement between bedding areas, travel corridors and food sources is much more easily accomplished on micro deer hunting parcel than big properties. To learn more about creating complimentary habitat improvements make sure to check out, precision buck hunting strategies for "Advanced Deer Habitat".

Defined Micro Movements for Deer

Big or small, deer habitat has to be defined. Unfortunately, large parcels take much more work to thoroughly define. The wasted space and holes in habitat can sometimes work against any improvements made to the parcel. The same amount of work done on 200 acres, goes much further on a 40 acre micro deer hunting parcel. Defining micro movements with strategically placed travel corridors, waterholes and mock scrapes on small properties, can give micro parcel deer hunters an edge over their large parcel neighbors. To learn more about defining micro movements, be sure to read about micro managing Buck Movements.


If you manage a large hunting parcel, picture it broken down into 4 equal blocks; how does each block stack up? Does one portion feature more attractive habitat than the others? How would your level of habitat improvements look if they were all compressed into a single 40 acre parcel? Odds are, that micro 40 acre deer hunting parcel would provide excellent high quality habitat improvements. Whether you own 40 acres or 500, have you worked hard to make your land appear several times larger than it really is?

By Jeff and Dylan

choose a treestand

*My personal choice is a stand from Family Tradition Treestand. I don't make that decision lightly either, because I only use the best I can find for all of my whitetail efforts.

1. The Choice For Treestand Safety Or Comfort

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Well, when it comes to choosing a treestand, although comfort is a very close 2nd, a safe treestand has to come first.

2. Comfortable Seating Opportunities

If I can't sit comfortably for at least 5 hours without having to stand, then the treestand I chose wasn't comfortable enough. I strongly prefer a web and sling style seat that creates zero pressure points on my tailbone. Simply put, the longer that you can stay motionless on stand without having to move due to discomfort, the fewer deer that you will spook.

3. Choosing A Quiet Treestand

If it squeaks, pings or pangs, it's not good enough to make it into my own personal treestand arsenal. One of the best pieces of mature buck hunting advice I can give you, is to hunt deer as if they had a gun too! I have experienced that if you can sneak to your treestand and climb into it without spooking a deer within earshot, your stand choice passes the test!

4. Cable-less Treestand Choices

In 1995 my southern MI neighbor narrowly escaped death, when both of his cables broke during an October bowhunt. There was no warning or slo-motion failure instead, he simply dropped straight South and broke both of his legs. His hunting partner told me he was on the ground before realizing what had even happened. Of course cables can and do last many years, but there are certainly better options, with my favorite being good old fashioned CHAINS.

5. American Made Treestand Options

It should be easy to find an American made treestand, but unfortunately it is not. Nearly all treestands are made overseas. Regardless of if their headquarters are in your own backyard or not, chances are they are choosing to use overseas labor and materials, to build their treestands. After a little research you will find that at least 90% of all treestands are not American made. Family Tradition Treestands are made in Charlotte, MI, and owned and operated by Jack Turner. Family Tradition is one of the only treestand companies that you can choose, that is 100% American made.

*You can't have great treestand safety and comfort, without great treestand safety gear!


Choosing a great treestand shouldn't be as difficult as it is! Safety, comfort, stealth, cable-less and American made features, should be the standard for any treestand choice. Those ingredients are all highly important, but enjoying your sit isn't the only reason for searching hard for a great treestand choice! When you choose a treestand that makes the grade, I have found that your chances of fooling a wise old monarch directly relates to the level of quality in your choice of treestands.


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