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Published Apr 21, 2023 3:00 PM
Hang on treestands remain the best elevated concealment option for hunters who are hoping to bag a big buck. Mainly because this type of stand is more versatile, stealthy, and affordable than any other option on the market. And the technology behind these stands has gotten substantially better over the last decade, making this style of stand lighter and easier to set up than ever before. While this style of treestand is arguably the most popular with bowhunters, they can easily be used by gun hunters too.
With the market more bloated than ever before, it can be a bit overwhelming to decide which one will best suit your needs. Here are the best hang on treestands on the market today.
How We Made Our Picks
As an experienced deer hunter of 24 years, I have spent my fair share of time sitting in hang on treestands and have learned what qualities to look for in the good ones. Additionally, we also looked at many different factors that will help determine the best stands for a variety of hunting styles and scenarios. Among our top considerations were the following:
- Weight: How easy is it to lug the stand back deep into the woods? How portable is the stand for use on more than one tree?
- Seating: How cushy is the seat on the stand? Is it built for all-day sits? Does it include armrests?
- Platform: Is the platform built from rugged materials? How much legroom does it provide for taller hunters?
- Value: Do the features of the stand match the asking price? Is the stand affordable enough to buy multiples for more than one stand location?
Best Hang On Treestands: Reviews and Recommendations
Best Overall: Millenium M150 Monster
- Weight: 19.5 Pounds
- Platform Size: 24” x 37”
- Seat: Adjustable with backrest
- Construction: Aluminum
- Extremely comfortable
- Rugged design
When it comes to roominess and comfort, the Monster is a hard stand to beat. Millennium gave this treestand a spacious platform that is 37 inches deep, making this stand perfect for hunters of all heights and weights. Another reason the M150 consistently rates high with users in online reviews is the adjustable seat height, which can be set between 16 and 20 inches high. Not many other stands offer that kind of functionality, and it’s not something Millennium mentions much in their advertising.
User reviews of this stand are rather consistent in terms of comfort and versatility. The only reported problems are some minor inconsistencies in construction. Some users have reported difficulty in assembling this stand. Other reviews have mentioned adjustments during setup can be a little challenging. However, in terms of all-day comfort, the Monster is a great choice.
Best for Bowhunting: Summit Treestands Ledge XT
- Weight: 23 Pounds
- Platform Size: 24” x 30”
- Seat: Textile fold-up with backrest
- Construction: Steel
- Rugged construction
- Roomy platform
- Comfortable backrest
- No leveling system
- Ratchet straps could be better
Bowhunting is unpredictable and often requires the hunter to move around in the stand to get the proper angle for a shot. That is where the Summit’s 24-inch wide by 30-inch-long platform is a big help. There is more than enough space to reposition quickly for a shot on an animal that has decided to go behind the tree. Besides just having room for archers to take shots from multiple angles, this stand also features a textile seat that is extremely comfortable. The backrest helps greatly for those all-day sits waiting for a big buck to cruise through at midday.
Unfortunately, this stand does not have a leveling system which hurts its versatility a little on crooked or misshapen trees. Some users have also reported in online reviews that the ratchet straps were subpar. It probably won’t hurt to add an extra one or two to the setup.
Best for Big Guys: X-Stand The Jester
- Weight: 17 Pounds
- Platform Size: 23.5” x 35”
- Seat: Fabric flex seat
- Construction: Aluminum
- Large weight capacity
- Spacious platform for taller hunters
- Arm rests on the seat
Although there are a ton of hang on treestands on the market today, not many are comfortable for bigger guys over long periods of time. However, the Jester is a solid option because of the 350-pound weight capacity and spacious 35-inch-long platform. For taller hunters, there is plenty of extra space to stretch their legs. This stand will prevent cramping up during an all-day sit. Another bonus feature is the armrests on the seat.
While this stand offers an incredible comfort level, there are some reported issues with noise using the included parts. However, this is an issue that can probably be mitigated by using some nylon or Teflon washers. Hunters can also mitigate sound by adding a little lubricant to the parts that fold against one another.
Best Portable: Hawk Helium Ultra Lite
- Weight: 11 Pounds
- Platform Size: 20” x 24”
- Seat: Memory foam layered
- Construction: Aluminum
- One of the lightest stands on the market
- Easy to setup
- Additional brackets allow use of one stand on multiple trees
- Platform is not very roomy
When it comes to lightweight treestands, the Hawk Helium only weighs 11 pounds, making it extremely packable. Hawk designed this stand to be modular around their CRUZR tree brackets, which are sold separately. This allows hunters to buy multiple brackets so they can use one stand on multiple trees. For public land hunters, this is a stealthy way to keep a low profile in areas with a lot of competition. The ultralight nature also makes this stand a solid choice for hunters who employ a run-and-gun style on larger parcels of land.
Although this stand is light and portable, online reviews note it comes at the expense of the platform itself. This is not a very roomy stand, and larger hunters might find it uncomfortable. Additionally, the stand is rather expensive for the size, but it is hard to find another stand this mobile.
Best for the Money: Muddy Outdoors The Boss XL
- Weight: 19 Pounds
- Platform Size: 25” x 34”
- Seat: Flex fabric
- Construction: Steel
- Great price point
- Easy setup
- Footrest adds value
- No backrest
- Some noise complaints
For $139, The Boss is an excellent stand packed full of features normally found only on more expensive models. Most notable here is the long 34-inch-long platform that’s roomy for hunters of all heights. Additionally, this stand comes with a footrest. The seat is a little smaller than some of the other fixed-position stands on the market, but it does flex for extra comfort during long sits.
Because of the lower price point, it’s not too surprising to see this stand does not come with a backrest. Some online reviews have also noted the stand can be a bit noisy, but this is a problem that can easily be solved using DIY-style solutions.
Best with Shooting Rail: Primal Outdoors Comfort King
- Weight: 38 Pounds
- Platform Size: 24” x 35.75”
- Seat: Flip-up textile
- Construction: Aluminum
- Affordable price
- Large backrest
- Shooting rail comes standard
- Difficult to set up
Not too many lock-on stands come with a shooting rail these days, but the Comfort King is an exception. The shooting rail on this stand is fully adjustable and padded. It’s perfect for firearms or crossbow hunters who want a steady rest for more accurate shots. Additionally, this stand comes with a rather spacious platform, footrest, and seat with a full backrest that will make it comfortable for taller hunters to sit for long periods. The $130 price tag is also highly affordable for just about any budget.
The big downside to this stand is the heavier weight that numerous online reviews note makes the stand a real challenge to set up. This is not a stand you’ll want to move around frequently. When it comes to stands that include a shooting rail, however, this one is a better value than the rest.
What to Consider When Buying a Hang On Treestand
In our experience, comfort is one of the main things many hunters overlook when choosing a treestand. Hang on stands with smaller platforms are much more portable, but the tiny platforms can make them a bit cramped for an all-day sit. Taller hunters will benefit from having a larger platform to stretch their legs. Likewise, the depth of the seat is a major comfort factor too. The wider and deeper the seat, the longer you will stay comfortable.
Think carefully about the spots you’ll be placing this style of stand. Hang on stands are more versatile for trees that aren’t perfectly straight, a major benefit over the best climbing stands and ladder stands. If you are planning to hunt public property, be sure to read the regulations regarding the use of hang on stands. You will also want to consider a model that can easily be locked to the tree to prevent theft.
Don’t forget to purchase a good tree stand safety harness to go with your stand. Many stands sold today include a rudimentary safety harness of some type. However, these harnesses are often not of great quality, and most do not provide the best comfort for longer sits.
While hang on treestands are designed to be silent, unwanted noises can sometimes develop on new stands or older ones that have been outside for a while. Therefore, it’s worth taking a little extra time to noise check your setup. Specifically, try standing on different parts of the platform to ensure it isn’t making unwanted noise. Raise and lower the platform and seat a few times to check for creaks and squeaks.
If the stand is getting noisy, one solution is to replace some of the washers with nylon or Teflon. Another idea is to lubricate the moving parts of the stand, especially around bolts and washers. Try to do this far in advance of the season starting because the worst time to find out about a noisy stand is after it spooks a big buck.
Q: How much does a hang on stand cost?
It depends on the size of the platform and the quality of the seat. Basic, bare-bones style hang on treestands can start at under $100, but do not offer much in the way of comfort for the hunter on longer sits. Stands with comfortable seating systems, armrests, and other comforts tend to start around $180 and go up in price from there. Stands on the higher end tend to run around $250 to $350 each.
Q: What is the advantage of a hang on stand?
Besides a lower price point than a ladder or climbing stand, hang on treestands are lighter and more portable. Hang on treestands also do not require a perfectly straight tree trunk to be set up. Crooked or misshaped trees are perfect for this style of stand. Hang on stands are also the easiest stands to hang up and take down at the end of the season.
Q: Do hang-on stands damage trees?
In my personal experience, hang on stands do little damage to trees. Because most hang on stands use a series of straps to lock securely to the tree, the chances of damaging the tree are low. We recommend taking down your stand at the end of each season as the tree can grow into the straps if left up unchecked. This can also compromise the safety of the stand down the line.
Best Hang On Treestands: Final Thoughts
The Millennium Monster was an easy choice for best overall. The stand is also our pick for the most comfortable thanks to that large 37-inch-long platform which is one of the largest on the market these days. For hunters who are hoping to sit comfortably all day during the rut, the Monster is the stand that will help you do it.
Why Trust Us
For more than 125 years, Field & Stream has been providing readers with honest and authentic coverage of outdoor gear. Our writers and editors eat, sleep, and breathe the outdoors, and that passion comes through in our product reviews. You can count on F&S to keep you up to date on the best new gear. And when we write about a product—whether it’s a bass lure or a backpack—we cover the good and the bad, so you know exactly what to expect before you decide to make a purchase.