March 11, 2022
By Todd Bromley
Tree stand hunting whitetails is the preferred method of most hunters. Positioned correctly, you should be able to easily avoid the eyesight and scent stream of any deer passing by. This does not mean, however, that any random stand site will produce. There are many factors that come into play when determining perfect tree stand placement. Once you've found the area that you want to hunt, here are some tips for picking the perfect tree in which to hang your stand.
The first thing you must consider when trying to select the perfect tree stand site is your ability to enter and exit the stand without alerting any deer within the area. You may have located the perfect honey hole on the property, but if you can't enter and exit the stand without tipping off the local deer herd of your presence, it's all for naught. A few such encounters and the deer will begin to avoid the area during daylight hours.
This also encompasses proper scent control. You do not want your scent drifting into suspected bedding areas or preferred feeding areas while accessing the area. This is potentially more damaging than having the deer spot you while entering and leaving the stand.
Even with all the proper safeguards in place, wear knee-high rubber boots and be careful what you touch or rub up against. The scent you leave behind can spook a deer long after you're in the stand. Walk slowly, quietly and stop often to listen and to control your perspiration. Finally, get into your stand quickly and quietly.
After you've found the perfect spot that meets the above criteria, the next important factor is picking the proper tree. First and foremost, the tree has to be safe. It should be living, straight, large enough to support you, and free of any dead debris above the stand. More than one unfortunate crossbow hunter has been knocked from his perch by falling debris from above.