Mathews Inc.
Want to purchase a rock climbing harness
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Medicinemann 10-Aug-17
Scrappy 10-Aug-17
JacobNisley 10-Aug-17
SANDMAN 10-Aug-17
Mad Trapper 10-Aug-17
Scrappy 10-Aug-17
MF 10-Aug-17
md5252 10-Aug-17
Bake 10-Aug-17
arbe25 10-Aug-17
Bake 10-Aug-17
Butternut40 10-Aug-17
arbe25 10-Aug-17
Bake 10-Aug-17
Bowfreak 10-Aug-17
PECO 10-Aug-17
Butternut40 10-Aug-17
Amoebus 10-Aug-17
Nogutsnostory 10-Aug-17
t-roy 10-Aug-17
greg simon 10-Aug-17
arbe25 10-Aug-17
elk yinzer 10-Aug-17
Trial153 10-Aug-17
Bowman 10-Aug-17
Bake 10-Aug-17
Timbrhuntr 10-Aug-17
Timbrhuntr 10-Aug-17
wilbur 10-Aug-17
XMan 10-Aug-17
Pat Lefemine 10-Aug-17
APauls 10-Aug-17
Bake 10-Aug-17
arbe25 10-Aug-17
arch2112 10-Aug-17
Alaska at heart 10-Aug-17
ben h 10-Aug-17
Timbrhuntr 10-Aug-17
Medicinemann 11-Aug-17
Alaska at heart 11-Aug-17
TD 11-Aug-17
Whitty 11-Aug-17
Trial153 11-Aug-17
kota-man 11-Aug-17
bigdog21 12-Aug-17
bigdog21 12-Aug-17
Scrappy 12-Aug-17
Timbrhuntr 12-Aug-17
Scrappy 12-Aug-17
Charlie Rehor 12-Aug-17
SANDMAN 12-Aug-17
elk yinzer 12-Aug-17
bigdog21 13-Aug-17
TD 13-Aug-17
ben h 13-Aug-17
DartonJager 15-Aug-17
DartonJager 15-Aug-17
DartonJager 15-Aug-17
DartonJager 15-Aug-17
APauls 16-Aug-17
dm/wolfskin 16-Aug-17
dm/wolfskin 16-Aug-17
dm/wolfskin 16-Aug-17
DartonJager 16-Aug-17
GrantK 17-Aug-17
DartonJager 17-Aug-17
mgmicky 19-Aug-17
Jerry Leblanc 20-Aug-17
snapcrackpop 21-Aug-17
DartonJager 29-Aug-17
wv_bowhunter 30-Aug-17
Will 30-Aug-17
snapcrackpop 30-Aug-17
elk yinzer 30-Aug-17
From: Medicinemann
10-Aug-17
I want to purchase a rock climbing harness and try it out for this Fall's whitetail bowhunting. I went on to the Black Diamond website and looked at some of the models. Many of them use plastic compression clips. Was hoping for some input from Bowsiters that currently use a climbing harness versus a more traditional HSS style vest/harness configuration. I would prefer something without plastic compression clips....any suggestions? Wish they made one in camo....many of the colors are pretty conspicuous....It was also interesting to see how remarks were from hunters that had switched from a full body harness, because these were so much more comfortable..... My BIGGEST concern was about the very function of the harness itself.....some of the comments mentioned that most of the harnesses worked well, as long as you aren't falling rapidly (WTH?..it's a climbing harness for Pete's sake, isn't its primary purpose to protect you when you ARE falling rapidly)....but if you did fall, you might not have anymore children. Other complaints mentioned include having to pull the crotch of your pants way up, so you can secure the loops around your uppermost legs. Many complaints were about cutting off circulation. This makes me wonder if these types of problems will vary from person to person (depending on build) and model of harness being bought. This also makes me wonder if I need to try these harnesses on in person, to make sure that I get one that fits well, or I may be returning several models until I find one that fits.....

From: Scrappy
10-Aug-17
I have been using the blackdiomond alpine bod for about five years now. Have had my treestand break once, was tied in correctly and all I did was sit down in my harness.

As far as the plastic clips go, look at it this way. There is no way a rock climbing company would be selling a harness that has parts on it that would fail easily.

Only people I have seen complaining about the fit is folks that are over weight. Think about it, rock climbing is not exactly a sport for fat people.

From: JacobNisley
10-Aug-17
I bought the Black Diamond Alpine to try this year but I have no experience using it yet. Good luck!

From: SANDMAN
10-Aug-17
I personally tried several models...the black diamond vario speed harness was my first attempt. I wasn't crazy about it. The attachment loop was too bulky for my taste (its gigantic compared to the Petzl) so I returned it. Next I tried the Petzl Aspir... it had a much lower profile attachment loop, but the padding in the legs and waist which seemed like a great idea proved to be too bulky for my taste. I ended up with a Petzl Gym model. Barely can tell I have it on. No bells and whistles...just a harness.

From: Mad Trapper
10-Aug-17
Just get the model that Pat had on. It is one of the best.

From: Scrappy
10-Aug-17
Mad trapper did you see the video of Pat hanging from the barn? That is the exact reason a full body harness is so dangerous. If you fall and either can't self rescue or knocked unconscious you are dead from suspension trauma.

Same fall with a rock climbing harness you can sit there all day with no trauma.

Bottom line is get something and use it.

From: MF
10-Aug-17
How do you attach your tether to a rock climbing harness? at the waist?

From: md5252
10-Aug-17
Rock climbers fall further and faster (& more often) than a hunter in a stand ever would. Black Diamond is among the best there is and I wouldn't hesitate to use one

That being said, I'd only use one if I also rock climbed. Otherwise, you'd be better off with a harness design fir hunters, not climbers

From: Bake
10-Aug-17
I had the same thought as you Jake. I got onto the Black Diamond website last night and looked at some. I'm still using a plain belt that came with some stand from 20 years ago.

I cannot stand the over-shoulder harnesses.

I liked the looks of a couple of those Black Diamond harnesses. I was worried about how to attach myself to the tree. . . .

From: arbe25
10-Aug-17

arbe25's Link
Petzl Pandion is what I use. Simple, pretty good camo colors and I can hang in it all day.

From: Bake
10-Aug-17
No one has yet answered what tether they use with their rock climbing harness to attach to the tree or a safety line. . . . Thoughts?

(Sorry if I'm hijacking Jake)

From: Butternut40
10-Aug-17

Butternut40's Link
Here's an interesting video showing a rock climbing harness in action. I'm also looking to replace my harness and now am wondering what the best option would be.

From: arbe25
10-Aug-17
I have a lot of tethers from buying stands in the past that I've used, but I make my own tethers, linemans belt, and 30' climbing ropes from 7/16 or 11mm PMI static line (28.5 kilonewtons) and prussics out of 7mm accessory cord (about 10-11 kilonewtons).

Also do yourself a favor and buy carabiners for climbing-relatively inexpensive and light as a feather. Those steel ones you get with hunting harnesses are crap.

From: Bake
10-Aug-17
Butternut. . . I'm convinced. Wish I could get a closer look at his tether.

From: Bowfreak
10-Aug-17
I've considered doing this a couple of times in previous seasons and never pulled the trigger. I'm tuned in to this thread.

From: PECO
10-Aug-17
If you have an REI store nearby, go there and check out harnesses in person. There should also be a sales associate who climbs that can help you out.

From: Butternut40
10-Aug-17

Butternut40's Link
Bake not sure on the tether as well but see arbe25's thread above. For comparison, check out this video. This is the exact harness I have (mid way through video) that came with my climber. I think it would require quite a bit more work to recover. Granted he did not have it set at the right height to start.

From: Amoebus
10-Aug-17
"If you have an REI store nearby, go there and check out harnesses in person. There should also be a sales associate who climbs that can help you out."

And, if you head to Bloomington, MN, they have a rock wall that you can practice on.

10-Aug-17
I switched to a rock climbing harness two years ago, I tie to the tree. I purchased a muddy safety line cut it in half and ended up with like a 15 foot rope. I use knots not carabiners. When it is cold out the harness goes on first then bibs I keep the zipper down and tie the rope on. I think mine is a petzl.

From: t-roy
10-Aug-17
I'm ashamed to admit until the last couple of years I didn't use a harness. Very stupid! I tried the old crappy harnesses that came with the tree stands and they were constantly tangled so I pitched them. Tried the Petzl Pandion and it works great. Very simple to put on and very comfortable.

From: greg simon
10-Aug-17
Good thread. I've been considering switching to a rock climbing harness as well. Being attached at the front of your harness seems like a very good idea, much easier to get back in your stand if you fall.

When using a rock climbing harness to hang steps and stand do you attach your linemans belt to the front tether or do some have the loops on the sides?

From: arbe25
10-Aug-17
I tried posting some pics but I keep getting an internal server error, whatever that means.

Greg, you can certainly use the front loop with a linemans belt, but it is a pain because the rope is right where you need to be to work. I threaded two inch webbing around the back of my harness from about hip to hip. Then threaded 1inch webbing with loops in the ends through the two inch webbing. The loops also end near each hip. I put a piece of accessory cord in the loops so they stay open. The two loops are what I hook my linemans belt to. Do not use any loops on a rock climbing harness other than the one in the front unless it has a sufficient load rating. A lot of them come with loops to attach accessories--these are for chalk bags and stuff like that, not for hanging from.

From: elk yinzer
10-Aug-17
Gravity is gravity, folks. Fall restraint is physics 101, nothing crazy. I just shake my head when people say “they were made for rock climbing, don’t use them”. They are engineered to arrest falls sometimes in excess of 20-25 feet. Arresting treestand falls in comparison is a cakewalk. I think this will be my 7th season with it and I'll never go back.

I have no idea why TMA still uses rear-attachment, full body. Really all those POS do are discourage use. It’s like if you had to strap into a NASCAR restraint system every time you got in your truck, only in this case it is less or equally effective.

As far as attachment to the tree I use 11 mm static cord with a 7mm prusik. You can probably even go a little smaller rope than that, but I figure I don’t take the best care of my rope. I make figure 8 loops at each end and adjoin with locking caribiners. I anchor my rope about head height and let just enough out that I can only fall about 3 feet (more on that later). I guess for extremely girthy guys the physics of that get troublesome, but I am 6’ 190 lbs and have no problem.

In climbing applications, in which falls can exert extreme force on both your body and the anchors, it is absolutely imperative that you have what is called a “dynamic fall system”. This is a really simple concept also. Think of a rubber band versus a rope that doesn’t stretch.

The only valid argument against rock climbing harnesses for hunting is the fact that they can create static fall situations. Pelvic and lower vertebrae fractures can result. TMA harnesses have loops sewn in that brake the force of the fall. This is called dynamic fall arrest. Really, I think it is smart to incorporate dynamic fall arrest. I have seen systems on the internet that do such. This can be done the same way TMA does, by sewing loops in webbing.

Personally, I am comfortable with static system, but there are a few rules I keep in mind: 1) I never, ever want to fall more than 3-4 feet. I really mean that. You have to vary the length of your rope to do so. 2) If I fall “out” of the treestand, it’s nearly impossible for the force of my fall to be directed straight down. That only happens in the event of catastrophic treestand failure.

I spent an hour one day testing falls with my harness. I am pretty comfortable my climber platform is never going to crash out from under me. In fact, I sometimes hook right into my climber when ascending and descending. No one with any regard for lawsuits (the mfg) are ever going to tell you to do that, but I trust that my treestand is built to withstand that.

As for models, I use the Black Diamond Alpine Bod. It is the most basic on the market. Mine is about due for an upgrade and I may get something with a little more heft that is more suited to use as a lineman’s belt. If you look at where the plastic buckles are on any harness, they bear virtually no weight. The weight is distributed nearly 50/50 to the rear of your hamstrings and your pelvis, no matter which direction you fall. That is because you center of gravity to attached to the tree right below your belly button. Again, simple physics.

There is a load-bearing loop on the rear that I thread my rope through, then loop around the tree and adjoin with a carbiner to form a very basic but functional lineman’s belt.

A couple other safety notes:

I thought clipping into the front of a harness would get in my way, but I tried it for a season and it did not at all. With the proper amount of rope let out, I think I have more room. I always have the rope going around my left side. I can shoot a full 360 degrees easy as pie. I can turn a full 600-some degrees for when a deer really gives you the run-around.

You would think the design of the harness would imperil your junk in a fall. It simply does not. Again, physics.

Many harnesses have gear loops (remember climbers carry tons of other hardware) that are not in any way meant to be load bearing. I cut all but one of mine off.

Inspect everything, store properly, replace every X years, etc.

You know how climbing treestands advertise that you can adjust the platform while sitting on the seat? Yeah, I tried that once and my platform ended up at the base of the tree. It’s extremely awkward, and I am young and athletic. With an RC harness I literally just hang from the tree and adjust it. Self-recovery is that easy.

Sorry, long post but this is not 140 character type stuff.

From: Trial153
10-Aug-17
I have used several rock climbing harnesses both for climbing and tree stand use. The one I like the best is the Black Diamond Vario Speed harness. Sized big enough to fit over my hunting clothes, light weight, simple and not intrusive.

From: Bowman
10-Aug-17
I started wearing Black diamond back in 1992 when I was using a game tracker safety belt and standing on Loggy Bayou tree stand . Both failed and I fell 18 ft on my head . I said this same statement " There is no way a safety belt company would be selling a harness that has parts on it that would fail easily" Well they did and another guy in a near by town had the same belt and he is paralyzed from waist down. My black diamond has a metal waist buckle not plastic . Just something to think about. Also , companies lie I saw loggy bayou at a show and asked if they ever had their stands fail or had any law suits because of a failure and they said no Wrong because I sued them.

From: Bake
10-Aug-17
I like those Black Diamond harnesses with the clippable leg straps. Looks like you wouldn't have to step into them. . .

I'm going to pull the trigger on one before season begins. Thanks for starting the thread Jake!

From: Timbrhuntr
10-Aug-17
I believe that the main problem with tree type safety harness is they are not meant to stop a fall but keep you in you stand. They are supposed to be hooked so that if you fall you only drop a couple inches if at all. The problem is most are attaching lanyards now with a shock absorber that deploys to slow down a fall and reduce impact force. Its just supposed to keep you in the stand. As far as rock climbing the harnesses are front attaching so that the climber can adjust to a horizontal position which releaves alot of the suspension trama effects like a tree trimmer that hangs in a seated position while working at a height in a tree or as some have stated a rock climber (too obvious). The tree stand harness is rear attaching so that if you slip you are able to self-rescue. Again you should not be falling more that a few inches and the attachment should be always be above your head unlike rock climbing where you are climbing to the next anchor and your attachment could actually be below you.

From: Timbrhuntr
10-Aug-17
I should add the tree harness is aslo rear attaching to keep you in the upright position to aid in self-rescue but also now increases the risk of suspension trama if you are unable to self-rescue. That is why the use of attaching of a shock obsorber is foolish in my opinion because it makes the tree climber believe thay are protected in the event of a fall. So they take a greater risk and this can result in a longer fall and the prospect of self-rescue espescially if the fall is long and hard enough on impact to cause unconsciouness. I guess I could also mention about static and dynamic ropes also. Rock climbers use dynamic ropes to lessen fall impact. Tree safety ropes (life line) should be static.

From: wilbur
10-Aug-17

wilbur's Link
Get a flipline to attach to your harness. Makes setting stands and climbing trees safer and easier.

From: XMan
10-Aug-17

XMan's Link
Jake, I bought this Black Diamond harness with the plans of using it during hunting season. After hanging my stands, I opted to not use it for hunting. I found it has some major drawbacks: I don't think its as comfortable as a full body harness, I find you have to secure it real tight to your legs and waist for it to stay up. 2. I don't like the tree strap in front of my body going to the tree and having to think about how I turn and becoming tangled without slack in the tree strap. Behind the back is just better for maneuvering especially when a deer is quickly approaching.... the last thing I want to fiddle with is my harness. They are great for hanging stands but for me that's where its use is going to end.

From: Pat Lefemine
10-Aug-17
My wife and I did a good amount of rock climbing when we were first married. I own a rock climbing harness. That being said, I would never use one for hunting. First, how do you wear it under your clothing? My hunting harness is under my clothing 70% of the season. Also, a rock climbing harness attaches your climbing rope to the front of your waist - where your belt buckle goes. Do you guys really like having the harness mounted outside your clothes in December, or even early season and then have that rope attached to the front of your waist getting in the way of the shot? Then you have to have some makeshift tether? No thanks.

Rock climbing harnesses are designed for rock climbers, not hunters. Personally, I find the notion of using a rock climbing harness, silly.

From: APauls
10-Aug-17
Made the switch from an SOP to a rock climbing harness. Much prefer it and Jake, I LOOKED for one with plastic clips. Metal is so noisy.

From: Bake
10-Aug-17
I just pulled the trigger on a BOD harness by Black Diamond. $49 on Amazon.

It's long overdue. I've been wearing a plain belt for years. I haven't switched because I can't stand those full body harnesses. I've been dealing with a rope on the front of my belt for years, and have never had an issue. So that doesn't bother me at all.

I absolutely wear mine on the outside of clothes whether early, mid or late season.

I think I'll like this harness. We'll see.

From: arbe25
10-Aug-17
Personally, I can't think of a single attribute where I don't like the rock climbing harness better. My tether is about armpit high when I sit and located on my right side. That way I can stand and shoot to my left as far as I want and I can turn to my right all the way around and never have to worry about too little or too much slack in the tether.

As far as clothes-that's another thing I really like about a rch. I can wear anything and put the harness on whatever layer of clothing I wish. The loop actually is located about bellybutton height. If I want to put on bibs while i'm in the stand...no problem. Raise the lower zipper and voila there's the loop. Put on a heavy coat, go ahead it will not affect anything.

As far as comfort, I always got lower back aches from the 4 pt harnesses and sitting/standing was a pain. I always felt like I had to grab my pants and pull them down because they were so bunched up in the groin. I tighten the rch up snug around the waist and leave the legs "looser" and I never know it's there.

From: arch2112
10-Aug-17
Pat, I've owned SOP harness for years. Luckily I have never had a case where I needed it but will always wear some kind of harness. In your video where you were suspended, did you ever feel that the straps on the legs were an issue, like cutting off circulation? Would you need the suspension relief system?

10-Aug-17
I did some gym climbing with a friend many years ago and often looked at my harness with the idea of giving it a try. However it had reflective material in places, so I decided to try a Black Diamond Alpine Bod for a treestand harness......very good decision. It is comfortable and light, plus easy to use once you get the hang of it. I bought a teather from PMI that has sew loops that attach to an HSS tree strap with carabiner. Up until this year I simply climbed up and clipped in, but decided to try an HSS lifeline after looking over one a buddy recently purchased. Being attached from the ground up may be an extra step, but might save a LONG step down some day with bulky rubber boots and snowy conditions in the late season.

From: ben h
10-Aug-17

ben h's embedded Photo
Cassidy Arch, Capital Reef Utah.
ben h's embedded Photo
Cassidy Arch, Capital Reef Utah.
ben h's embedded Photo
170' pitch also at Capital Reef.
ben h's embedded Photo
170' pitch also at Capital Reef.
If you wouldn't use your "hunting" harness to rapel off this, I wouldn't use it. The Black Diamond Alpine harness is pretty nice and super adjustable, so it will easily go over clothing, or under if you choose. It's also probably one of the cheapest harnesses on the market and is completely black.....at least mine is. If you ever get the chance to go canyoneering, definitely go; super fun.

From: Timbrhuntr
10-Aug-17
Cool pics but I wouldn't use my treestand harness to rapel period. It's not designed to rapel in.

From: Medicinemann
11-Aug-17
I am pleased by the significant amount of feedback.....and I appreciate it all. Will be driving cross country tomorrow, and if I see an REI store, maybe I'll stop and check out a few models. Thanks for the input everyone......my biggest concern (based on comments made by others) is having the connection in front of me, versus being behind me.....but until I check it out in person, that is just a conceptual challenge. Real experience will make the decision for me.

11-Aug-17
Having the connection in front of you pretty much assures you are going to end up FACING the tree rather than having your back to the tree in the case of a fall. That is precisely the way a RCH is designed. My BD Alpine Bod is quite adjustable and is solid black, so it is worn on the outside of my hunting clothing on purpose. With ASAT, it pretty much blends right in and allows easy layering to the upper body while on stand. Since I frequently have a vest strapped to my pack, it is a non-issue to slip it on during a hunt with no fussing around or cutting teather holes in your camo. Bottom line is wear whatever you want.....as long as you are safely strapped in while hunting off the ground.

From: TD
11-Aug-17

TD's Link
Go with a tree climbing harness and toss the stand....... =D

I'll never buy another stand. Have dozens of trees set up, pick a tree, wear it in, climb, strap in and you're hunting. If you are the least bit athletic these are awesome. You're not sticking out of the tree like a sore thumb. Nobody can use your "stand" but you..... and nobody can steal it. I can even fly into a hunt with it.

From: Whitty
11-Aug-17
I have the Petzl referenced above and like others who have actually tried it, it works great! If it's a long walk in to my stand I stuff it in my pack as it packs small and just put on at the tree. I use it with lifelines on my locons with no problems so I'm 100% connected and it's completely out of the way when shooting from the stand...like other mentioned the rope goes around your waist and behind you with the ability to spin 360 if needed. For the cost of them, give it a try!

From: Trial153
11-Aug-17
The tether in front on you is a non issue. It's atwaist height and you have plenty of rope to move in either direction for a shot. Being the harness is only over my pants I can add or take off layers without having to untie from the tree, no slipping straps though holes in jackets, no uncliping carabiners...no fuss at all.

You want a real test. Set a stand at 5-6 feet off the gound. Tie in property with tether and rc harness and step off. Then do the same with a full body harness designed for hunters and make your own decision, that's what I did. There isn't even a comparison in comfort and dexterity of the two design in regards to self rescue.

From: kota-man
11-Aug-17
I'm with Pat on this topic. Bought a rock climbing harness, tried it and returned it. Maybe I didn't give it a fair shot, but I thought it was goofy for the tree stand application.

From: bigdog21
12-Aug-17

bigdog21's embedded Photo
bigdog21's embedded Photo
slow descend will safely put you on the ground. used in construction daily for safety where OSHA has the highest standers. they work good.

From: bigdog21
12-Aug-17
if choosing the wright one you will hook on at the ground and be safe going up and climbing down it will extend and retract on its own but locks on a sudden jerk like a fall then slowly lets you down

From: Scrappy
12-Aug-17
Ha bigdig21, I sure hope it's not the same company that used to make those.

Crane operators where being taught how to use them. One steps out of the crane and nothing caught him except the cement floor. He broke apart like humpty dumpty. He got a really big check but was screwed up for life.

We also used them in the state department, we had to teach embassy personnel how to descend from 2nd story windows. Was fun watching the fat ones freak out as we pushed them out the window. We meaning young Marines. We could always see the humor in others suffering.

Needless to say with so many fails even the government stopped using them.

From: Timbrhuntr
12-Aug-17
So u were training and using a new piece of equipment from a height high enough to cause severe injury and had no second means of attachment or safety?

From: Scrappy
12-Aug-17
Not me I had nothing to do with it, but to my understanding they had them in all the cranes. They were required to train getting down.

At the embassies we had attachment points at various windows. Put a safety harness on the people attach the sky Jenny to them and give them a push. Was supposed to be safe way to descend according to the government.

12-Aug-17
I wonder if on www.rockclimbing.com they have any threads asking about using tree stand harnesses instead of rockclimbing harnesses? Funny boys we are!

From: SANDMAN
12-Aug-17
Patronize much, Chuck?

From: elk yinzer
12-Aug-17
Charlie, if that sarcastic logic wins the argument, please explain how leatherwall exists? People embrace inferior options for all sorts of reasons. Falling out of a tree is a cat that be skinned more than a few ways, but rock climbers have figgered out a pretty decent system. Like I said, I use my rc harness to do more than fall out of the tree. It is a useful tool in my hunting arsenal but I'm not gonna say a guy can't hunt with a full body harness. I've untangled and wrastled with my last full body harness because there is a better way.

From: bigdog21
13-Aug-17

bigdog21's embedded Photo
bigdog21's embedded Photo
leave the stand at home and hunt anywhere any tree. strap on steps and the harness pack pretty easy.

From: TD
13-Aug-17
Yep... ^^^^^

Since Trophyline stopped making the Tree Saddle several years ago, these guys are filling the void. I have an old tree saddle I still love and use, but my buddy picked up that one above. Real good gear, a bit more complicated than the saddle but maybe more comfortable when adjusted and dialed in. Couldn't fall out of it if you wanted to......

From: ben h
13-Aug-17
Charlie, too funny, that was the point I was trying to make albeit mine was much more long winded (but it did have cool photos). I was a climber probably 10 years or more before I started treestand hunting, so I was already familiar with that equipment and good safety practices. Because of this, I've never even tried the hunting harnesses and by the looks of them I highly doubt I will. elk yinzer makes a decent point though, there are many ways to stay safe, chose whichever harness you like the most and USE it.

From: DartonJager
15-Aug-17

DartonJager's embedded Photo
DartonJager's embedded Photo
After looking at a lot of RCH's I chose this one for its ability to accept a lineman's rope. It's a Ingenuity Professional mountaineering RC/Safety harness.

From: DartonJager
15-Aug-17
OOPs forgot to add was $57.00 W/Free S&H at Amazon. Will give it a serious going over and report my findings.

From: DartonJager
15-Aug-17

DartonJager's embedded Photo
Guido's Web tree climbing hunting harness
DartonJager's embedded Photo
Guido's Web tree climbing hunting harness
I would recommend this option but they are going out of production and soon will no longer be available if not already. I own one and they work well.

From: DartonJager
15-Aug-17
My bad just check their W/S for those interested Guido's Outdoors are still making the Web hunting system. I got extremely lucky to find a used XL one with a lot of extra goodies at AT for a pretty good price.

From: APauls
16-Aug-17
You're not going to be using a tree saddle type system in Canada in November below freezing I can tell you that. I could see using them in a warmer climate.

From: dm/wolfskin
16-Aug-17

dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
I've been using one for about 4 years and love it. I put a strap around my belt for a lineman's belt. Strap is velcroed on. I made up one of my ropes for the lineman's belt with an ascender on it which makes it very easy to work your rope for tightening or loosening. I carry two ropes for going up and to attach before unhooking from the lineman's belt. You hook up at where your belt buckle would be. tie off above your head and adjust so where a fall would be only inches and not feet. The rope is tucked under my right arm pit and is adjusted with the prussic knot. Slide out rope to stand up and pull rope back to tighten up.

From: dm/wolfskin
16-Aug-17

dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo

From: dm/wolfskin
16-Aug-17

dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
dm/wolfskin's embedded Photo
Have no idea who's picture that belongs to.

From: DartonJager
16-Aug-17
APauls, Your reasoning why you thing a web hunting system is ill-suited for very cold climates? I have hunted in sub zero weather quite a few times and I have an near super human tolerance for cold, and I will tell you unless your out of the wind or have the benefit of artificial I've yet to meet who has lasted for hours on end 20' up in a tree in sub zero temps.

From: GrantK
17-Aug-17
As someone who has spent a whole lot of time hanging in a rock climbing harness (not while hunting) a couple things: Arcterex is the way to go if comfort is more important than cost, they are light enough you will never notice it in your pack but not uncomfortable like an alpine bod or other minimalist harness. any plastic buckle is just attaching the elastic that holds up the back of the leg loops up, this doesn't affect strength at all. most harnesses you can remove the plastic on the gear loops, probably a good idea for hunting. Tie in with a piece of 8.3 MM cord or a short bit of climbing rope, way quieter than a biner.

From: DartonJager
17-Aug-17

DartonJager's embedded Photo
DartonJager's embedded Photo
Have an update about my RCH I posted a pic of. Got it today and are sending it back in favor of a different design. Was a comfortable very well made RCH, but the three d-rings made it top heavy and difficult to stay up on my waist. I opted for this model instead and will let you know how and if it works out. I hope I am not setting myself up for failure by insisting on buying a harness with d-rings on the side so I can wear it to install my climbing system and stands that will make it to heavy to stay up easily. Will see with this one. It has a synthetic attachment point that should bring down the weight some.

From: mgmicky
19-Aug-17
Great thread. FYI, Backcountry has a climbing sale going on this week. I just received the BD Alpine Bod for $34.00. Put up a stand and installed lifelines on all my existing stands today and the harness worked really well. The weight is probably 1/3 of my SOP harness and that's much appreciated in the 95* heat and 90% humidity today. I'm looking forward to hunting with it in a couple of weeks. Thanks for all of the info guys...

20-Aug-17

Jerry Leblanc's Link
Check out the link. They use all metal clips. Front and rear connection points. High quality but pretty expensive.

From: snapcrackpop
21-Aug-17
Sorry I'm late to the thread. Looks like a lot of hunters switching to the RC harness.

I wear my harness over my pants and can slip on bibs without taking my harness off. Same with a coat! Try that with a full body harness.

With a climber stand all you need is the RC harness, a 8' safety rope with prussic knot attached by a carabiner. If you are using a ladder stand or hang-on, I would suggest adding a tether/leader(1-3') between the RC harness and a 20' life line.

For a lineman's set-up(hanging a hang-on), it gets tricky. But basically you attach to the front instead of the sides. OR to the sides of the RC harness, adding a loop of webbing if wanted. This added connection you better be sure is solid and not prone to fail, however. A SECOND linemans rope (8' safety rope, prussic knot and carabiner) would also be recommended for the "transition" from the sticks to the platform to prevent being unattached at any point.

NEVER attach your RC harness in the back or the sides! The biggest advantage (besides comfort) is the comfort when hanging with little risk* of suspension trauma. If you attach to the back or sides you're SCREWED!

*EDIT, suspension trauma is a risk with ANY harness, but because you are in a seated position, the RC harness greatly reduces the risk. ANYONE that is suspended and is unconscious or becomes unconscious is quickly going to die regardless of the harness worn.

From: DartonJager
29-Aug-17

DartonJager's embedded Photo
DartonJager's embedded Photo
Just a friendly update. I am a big guy with a waist line that varies for 38-40" now add in cloths and my waist line jumps up to a size that I felt would be to big for the BD Alpine Bod harness who's advertised waist line for the XL was 39". So I set about looking for a 1/2 body RC harness strictly for use while hunting and not for hanging stands. I found and bought this one made by Starpeak safety harness Co. I've tried it on and it fits perfectly over minimal or maximum clothing and I am completely satisfied with the fit of it and the quality of manufacture. I will caution I am a complete novice with 1/2 body harnesses and I have only tried it out superficially by hanging from a tree in my yard, but thus far it's very comfortable and seems to work as intended. I feel it is a great harness choice for us larger hunters that have waist lines between 40-44". Just a suggestion I felt worth sharing. It is available at Amazon for under $25 W/S&Hhttps://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06XK93KSD/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

From: wv_bowhunter
30-Aug-17
I believe there is a big difference in the tests that you see using a rock climbing harness while falling vs an actual fall.

I am certain that while CLIMBING up and down setting stands, that a CLIMBING harness would be the better choice if properly connected with a climbing belt.

That is where the advantage ends for me. I understand the issues with circulation if suspended from a traditional harness. However, if used correctly and the tether connected high enough to be snug while sitting, you should not be hanging too far below or away from your stand or climbing aid to be able to get back onto it in my opinion.

The vast majority of full body harness demonstrations do not show them being used properly and that is when they become unsafe. Now, in regards to the videos for the rock climbing harnesses being flawed... either above or in another thread, a video was posted of the guy falling out of his stand to show how great the rc harness was. If you watch closely, he is holding onto the tree rope or prepared to grab it as he "falls" or more accurately, jumps from his stand. In one example had he not been holding on to the rope to pull himself back up quickly I believe he would have been upside down. If I were to trip up and fall, I am probably going to have a bow, binoculars, or rangefinder... something in my hand. Even if I didn't have, my first inclination is probably not going to be to grab the rope as I fall and get spun facing the tree.

The main thing is to use something! If a rc harness is more comfortable to you that probably means you are more likely to use it. In all cases it is absolutely better than nothing. Be safe for yourself, your family and friends. No animal is worth risking your life or livelyhood over. Always stay connected 100% of the time before leaving the ground until you return to it.

From: Will
30-Aug-17
Last night I tried over and over to fall out of a stand with a RC Harness and I could not get myself to fall upside down. I hung from the harness for about 3 minutes and it was comfortable. Not sure how to get upside down. I didn't try the head first dive but that cant happen with the harness tethered to the tree behind me. Lots more comfortable, lighter and out of the way than the harness I had been using.

From: snapcrackpop
30-Aug-17
If you are shaped like an upside down bowling pin, you MIGHT go upside down. Otherwise no way. PS: its really hard to jump, roll, fall out of a tree knowing you're doing it and NOT grab that rope. Grabbing the rope was not to mislead someone, just instinct.

From: elk yinzer
30-Aug-17
Snapcrackpop - they make this stuff called liquid courage takes care of that little detail. Hey Bubba, hold my beer, Ima about to fall outta tree for the youtubes!

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