Tree saddle hunting...

Discussion in 'Bowhunting Talk' started by mikerock85, Jun 25, 2014.

  1. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    Hey Bob! Would you be willing to meet up sometime and show me the saddle?
     
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  2. parkersdad

    parkersdad Weekend Warrior

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    Two things, first off you can one stick climb so easy with this stand it is not funny. I use one hawk helium stick with a black diamond aider. When I climb the stick the first time I am already at seven or 8 feet. I move my tether up swing to the side put my fork in the tree sit down and relax and move the stick up as high as I can and repeat. Second this hybrid is way more comfortable than any other Stand I have sat in. You will sit still longer and see more game.


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  3. parkersdad

    parkersdad Weekend Warrior

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    Also keep in mind that you do not need a platform with the hybrid. That is a 3 pound weight savings from a regular saddle right there


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  4. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    After watching this video, I am completely sold on the JX-3...

    I'll have to look into the one stick method with the JX-3
     
  5. S.McArthur

    S.McArthur Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Get one early, it takes some time to get yourself in "saddle shape", it's kind of like skiing, you'll use muscles you typically don't use everyday and it takes some conditioning. Not like physical conditioning, more like getting used to how things feel.

    It takes some practice, I've found myself slinging around the tree a few times. Like most things, you just have to test and find the limits and how it all works. Yes, there can be a lot of movement, but if you setup up properly with a tree in between you and the potential "action" zone, you can use the tree as cover and never really get picked off.

    My first impressions as of now;
    It is not going to be the "end" of other tree stand methods.
    There are going to be a lot of saddles for sale in a few months: a lot of people are going to get their feelings hurt about this setup
    You need to have some "fitness" to be comfortable, not like super cross fit, but not a hibernating bear either.
    More to come...
     
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  6. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    Oh man......I'm sold 1000% on this!!!

     
  7. siwulat

    siwulat Weekend Warrior

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    For those who hike a long ways into an area these things can be a game changer. My entire pack which includes platform, climbing system, hunting gear, etc. weighs less than my climber stand.

    I agree with everything McArthur says above. Definitely won't be the end of tree stands, but I feel the saddle will be a huge advantage to have in the arsenal of options.
     
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  8. S.McArthur

    S.McArthur Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I really like the concept but I've had my moments where I debated if it really was worth it.
    Being away from tree opposed to being against the tree is very different and leaves me feeling vulnerable. However, I can move around the tree for cover but I need to see the deer coming to use that advantage. There is a video or podcast where they say that the way you stand is similar to the angle of tree branches so you don't look as out of place, but you are still a human hanging off a tree; you look silly.
    I can get into some pretty tight spots and leave a lot of the cover/brush whereas I would want to cut down some shooting lanes in a climber etc. The extra mobility to move around the brush is great and may keep me in cover longer. Results will vary depending on setup.
    It's super light and surprisingly easy to climb with lone wolf sticks; quiet as well if you practice/take precautions to silence your gear.
    If I had a back strap/recliner thing I was probably in the most comfortable position last week. I was sitting with my legs stretched to a branch and leaned up against the tree, had I had the recliner strap thing, I probably could have slept in the tree.
    Movement: I am quite fidgety and may have some issues with movement. The fact I'm hanging on a rope adds to movement if not careful; I will have to plan my setup to have extra cover if possible.

    The JX3; personally, it looks too bulky for what "I" personally would need it for. It does look much more comfortable than a saddle and I can see the pros to it. Not bashing, just a birds eye view from a guy whom has not laid eyes on one.

    I'd like to blow smoke up your ass like 95% of the new saddle owners, but I see some quite a few cons with the saddle. Where you can basically just take a climber out and climb, you actually need to figure out your setup prior to climbing with a saddle. I have yet to find a way to add/remove pants/bis etc. layers while in the saddle other than climbing down to change. This to me is kind of an issue, I walk in light and like to cool down prior to adding my layers.
    Like I said in a previous post, wait until the off season and I guarantee the market will be flooded with used saddles for sale.
     
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  9. cantexian

    cantexian Grizzled Veteran

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    You have some valid points. It will not be for everyone. I did my first hunt in my saddle last night. After 12 years of lugging 30+lbs of gear in for a public land hunt, I am not going back to a climber or the hang-on stand I used last year. Last night with sticks, platform, and pack I carried in 14lbs.

    Since you mentioned feeling vulnerable, I am curious, how much time have you spent practicing? I got my saddle back in May. I have practiced in it for at least an hour once per week since then. I had over 30 hours of practice time prior to hunting last night. It took me about five practice sessions before I really got comfortable in it. Now, I feel safer and more comfortable than I ever did in either a climber or hang-on stack.


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    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
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  10. S.McArthur

    S.McArthur Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I've been up down trees since...maybe march(?). The vulnerable feeling is that I'm away from the tree as opposed to being able to tuck into tight to it and "hide". It's really just a practice thing getting used to how the saddle/ropes handle; It's a mental thing, I feel like I'm hiding when I push my body/face against the tree.
    I had some confidence issues in the tether prusik but after research the knot then doing some more ground level flipping upside down, I feel 100% confident the knot will keep me secure. I probably spend about 2-3hrs/week shooting from 30yards/hunting height. It's so hot here still it's not a lot of fun sweating my a$$ off climbing up and down.
    I was giving a demo of the saddle to some non-believers:
    upside.JPEG
     
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  11. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    [QU
    Using the one stick method, what happens if you drop the stick while setting it up when you are 15' up? is there a way to descend?
     
  12. slickbilly-d

    slickbilly-d Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Or you gotta poop....bad. Like explosion bad
     
  13. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    LOL nevermind!! This is friggen sweet!!!

     
  14. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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    I want one BAD!!!!!!
     
  15. Holt

    Holt Grizzled Veteran

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    You should really try one before you commit. It's a different feeling while hanging at hunting height, then with a stand. Go to saddlehunter.com and look up there google map. It shows all the members were they are located and you pm the closest one to see if they would let you try it out. The members for the most part are very willing to help other hunters out.

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  16. parkersdad

    parkersdad Weekend Warrior

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    I weighed my JX3 hybrid today at work on a certified scale. The hybrid with one stacked outdoor stick a five step aider from black diamond and my lineman‘s belt and tree tether I was at 14.3 pounds.


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  17. Swamp Stalker

    Swamp Stalker Legendary Woodsman

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  18. parkersdad

    parkersdad Weekend Warrior

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    Here is a video and a few photos of how I hook my aider to my stacked outdoors stick for one stick climbing



    [​IMG][​IMG]


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  19. Between2Bluffs

    Between2Bluffs Weekend Warrior

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    Besides looking like you're about to tackle Mt. Everest the idea does seem ok.
     
  20. parkersdad

    parkersdad Weekend Warrior

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    It is very simple. In three moves I am 15 to 16 feet. What I like about tying around the bottom steps is the fact that I never get kick out even on a crooked tree


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