Saddle hunting has become quite the trend in the whitetail world lately (and for a good reason). Using a saddle, saddle platform, and sticks allows me to get in any tree and walk all day with everything on my back and not feel a thing. Saddle hunting is probably the safest form of hunting from an elevated position. You are always 100% tied off to the tree because you don’t have a choice! As you go up the tree hanging your sticks, you throw your lineman's rope around the tree and back to your saddle, and once you set the platform, you pull out your tether and wrap that around the tree to connect to the bridge on your saddle.
Sounds complicated, right? That’s what I thought, but I used it immediately after with no issues after watching a couple of YouTube videos. One of the misconceptions with saddle hunting is that it isn’t comfortable. With a saddle, you are tied off from the front and are leaning back into basically a hammock and placing your feet on a platform of some sort. I found that hunting from a saddle was no more or less comfortable than hunting from a traditional treestand. The nice thing is that you can shift your position in how you are in your saddle, which will allow you to change if you start feeling pressure points. Also, you can shoot 360 degrees around the tree in most cases, which you can’t typically do in a traditional treestand. It takes some practice to get used to shooting out of a saddle, but it's simple once you get the hang of it. The downfalls of a saddle can be the movement required to shift your body for a shot, but since the tree is in front of you, you can hide the movement.
Since I started saddle hunting in 2019, I’ve quickly moved to hunt out of a saddle 99% of the time and honestly haven’t sat in a traditional treestand at all in the last two seasons. The fun part about saddle hunting is that you can constantly tweak your system to find out what works best for you.
My Saddle Hunting Setup
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