Muddy | Hang and Hunt Tips & Tactics
Tips on how to be deadly quiet when setting up stands while hunting
Killing a mature whitetail on public land is one of the most challenging yet gratifying experiences a deer hunter can hope to achieve. If you’ve been reading recent magazine articles or listening to Podcasts from the nation’s top hunters, you’ll soon discover that most of these bucks are killed on the first sit of the year. Finding this type of success doesn’t come easy, nor is it by chance. These hunters are fine-tuning their setups year-round to minimize their impact on the area they intend to hunt.
If you want to replicate this type of success, you’ll need a mobile system from the time you leave your truck, until you are hanging your stand. Below are some of the critical elements to making your hang and hunt experience a success.
Right Equipment and Practice
At one time, there were very few options when it came to a mobile system for the average hunter — and most weren’t very good. Some of the stands were loud, some bulky, some heavy, most were uncomfortable; not to mention you couldn’t even climb but a fraction of them because you needed a straight tree. Now, there are a plethora of options, but our team chooses to use a Muddy Vantage and four Muddy Quick Sticks because they’re:
- Packable, with a slim profile
- Easy to use and quite
[Text Wrapping Break]Having a setup you can trust and depend on is essential, but it’s even more critical that you know this setup inside and out — before opening day. Nailing down your system ahead of time is crucial to understanding how your stand goes up, and how to minimize the amount of time and noise that it takes to get it safely and securely in the tree.
The number one key to success, are you putting in the practice. It may take five times to get it down, and it may take twenty, but it’s essential that you know exactly how each piece of gear gets up the tree and on the tree.
Aaron Warbritton killed his biggest buck to date using hang and hunt tactics while hunting public land in southern Iowa.
There are multiple ways you can modify your setup to meet your needs, but there are a few tried and true methods that will work for every system. Below is a step by step guide on how to stay as efficient as possible from leaving the truck to hanging your stand and back out again.
- Keep it neat and tight: Make sure the sticks and ropes are neatly stacked against the stand, and ratchet the sticks to the stand so they will not make noise when walking.
- Once you’re at the tree, disassemble all the pieces and neatly lay them on the ground and tie the sticks to a pull-up rope at different heights. Also, make sure and have your bow or gun on a separate rope and attached to your harness or belt — Once you go up the tree, you do not want to come back down.
- Place your treestand bracket in a pocket or fanny pack so that you can access it quickly once you are at the point of hanging your stand.
- Before climbing the tree, tie off using a lineman’s belt to your safety harness.
- Once you have your sticks and stand hung, tie off with a tether above your head before stepping in the stand.
Once all of your equipment is up, you are ready to hunt — in all, you were from the ground to hunting in ten minutes! Not only that, you can climb more trees than you ever considered while using a climber.
The more you hunt with this setup, the more you’ll consider fine-tuning your gear. There are a few different modifications that can make your stand even more quiet and efficient. Make sure and check the owners manual, or call the manufacturer before doing anything extreme, but here a few basic add-ons’s:
- Paracord: Take some paracord and make a cobra weave around the platform of the stand. This will dampen any contact with metal that might occur, and will also with the cold from your stand.
- Stealth Strips: This is an adhesive backing tape that you can add to your stand and sticks, that will again help with the cold and sound dampening.
- Molle Straps: These military-grade shoulder straps will make carrying your stand long distances a breeze.
Jeremy Flinn of Stone Road Media used his Muddy Vantage Tree Stand and Aerolite Climbing Sticks in a hang and hunt situation and arrowed this beautiful Pennsylvania buck on his first sit.
Whatever hang and hunt method you choose, or if you consider going with a climber, getting to know your equipment through practice will make it that much easier, safer and quieter. Remember that the majority of mature bucks are killed on your first sit, so mix up your locations and make this season a success.