How high should you set your deer stand

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I have hunted with a lot of different people who have different opinions on how high a hunter should set his deer stand.

The biggest part of setting your deerstand is to set it to where you are comfortable. If you are not comfortable because your deerstand is way too high in the tree, most likely you are not going to be making comfortable shots.

My opinion though, I think the higher up you can get the better chance you have of not spooking a deer. I like to set my stands anywhere from 25 ft. to 32 ft. being this is the highest I can get without feeling a little uncomfortable being any higher. A lot of the guys I hunt with tend to keep there stands around 15ft. to 20ft. I have hunted a lot out of both heights and I seem to see and keep deer around me a lot longer when I am higher in the tree. There is a better chance that your natural smell is going to stay higher in the air and the deer are less likely to smell you out. The deer don't seem to pay attention to things that high in the tree. They just have a harder time seeing that high up.

So if you want to see more deer and have deer hang around your stand a lot longer, push that stand a little higher than most hunters do and you will see the difference yourself.


numbnutz's picture

Great tip, I would have my

Great tip, I would have my stand that i've only used a few time around 25 feet, If i could I would put it up as high as i can like 40 feet. I have no fear on heights anymore due to my job, I climb a lot of power poles with gaffs up to 65'. at first it kinda scary but I'm just so used to it now that climbing trees and poles are nothing to me anymore. I also like to free climb which means not safetybelt. it sounds dumb but its actually safer to do it that way. I need to get another section of ladder so i can atleast get my stand upto 30' Your right about the scent staying higher and its not natural for deer to look up so your less likely to be seen. Thanks for sharing.

ManOfTheFall's picture

Most of my stands are in the

Most of my stands are in the 15 to 20 foot range. I have had some as high as 25 feet. I would definitely have top agree that the higher the stand is the more you can get away with up in the tree. One reason I don't put all my stands at 25 feet is most of the area's I hunt in don't have trees that big so I use alot of ladder stands that are in that range. I do have a couple hang-ons that are close to 25 though. Yes, the most important thing is being comfortable in the stand.

Ca_Vermonster's picture

Wow, 30+ feet up?  that's a

Wow, 30+ feet up?  that's a heck of a ways to be up there in a treestand!  But, if you are comfortable doing it, go for it!

Some of my favorite stands have been ones that my Dad and I built, where it's a ladder stand with a platform on top.  They are only about 12 feet or so, and you just sit down and lean against the tree.  Really nice if you can find a cedar tree to cozy up to. But, since it is sitting, it's pretty much for rifle only.  For archery, and the amount of movement involved, I guess you have to get higher.

groovy mike's picture

I agree that comfort is most important

I definitely agree that your comfort level with the height that you will be at is most important.  I also concede the point that in general placing the stand higher keeps you out of teh deer's natural path of vision and that it may help keep your scent from reaching them as well. 

That being said - I have had two tree stands fall out from underneath me at no fault of my own.  And so I am terrified to be in one higher up than I would be comfortable jumping to the ground.  About fifteen feet off the ground is about the maximum height that I would even consider! 

I'd MUCH rather be on the ground  on an elevated piece of realestate to improve my view over surrounding country rather than being off the ground.

Retired2hunt's picture

  I definitely agree with you


I definitely agree with you that being high in the stand will allow your scent to travel (in most cases) above the deer on the ground.  Deer also don't have natural predators high in the air so they tend not to look up that high - especially 25 to 32 feet high!

Most of my stands were 12 to 20 feet high.  Many were homemade stands.  The reason for a 12 foot stand was because it was set deep in the woods on the edge of a valley and the prime area was down below.

One thing Dad always taught me - stretch burlap or some camo cloth across your rest bar (on pre-fab stands) as that will hide leg and foot movement... and/or tie some strings on your stand's ladder that will blow in the wind.  The deer will become accustomed to the movement of these items in the wind when you are not there and will be less likely spooked with your possible movement later.