Hunting saddles

mhodge88

Button Buck
I use the beast 20 with 2 step aider and the aero hunter. I’ve never had good experience with sticks but with the Tethrd rope they are rock solid. Also run the xl platform it’s nice but you can do without. I have really enjoyed the learning curve but having srt to reclimb to stands I set for a few days takes the time out of it. Just make sure the foot loop is long enough or you’ll fight it and end up wanting to throw em out.
 

pccutter

Spike
I converted a summit open shot top piece, to a climbing platform ( can do with same with lone wolf). Attach to tree, move rope up each time just like climbing with climber. Use sticks on trees that don't allow for climbing. Check YouTube for lone wolf conversation.
 

Lowg08

Eight Pointer
I converted a summit open shot top piece, to a climbing platform ( can do with same with lone wolf). Attach to tree, move rope up each time just like climbing with climber. Use sticks on trees that don't allow for climbing. Check YouTube for lone wolf conversation.
This is a good option but can restrict on what trees can be used.
 

ncscrubmaster

Ten Pointer
Contributor
Ok I’ll jump in. Me and my oldest son are using H2 saddles this year. Its a very nice well constructed saddle. I bought an XOP platform it’s a little heavy but very nice and strong. Locks in tight and doesn’t move around. He uses an Out On A Limb platform it’s a little lighter and does the same thing. I ordered some XOP climbing sticks with double steps. The locked together great but we’re just to heavy. I bought the XOP shorter version and they are lighter and they worked but were only single step. We ordered two double steps and converted one of them to have a double step top and bottom. I use it as a single stick method with a three step aider and usually I can get 6-8 foot up on my first stick placement. He uses a cut down modified hawk stick and uses the one stick method. Only thing with one sticking you really need to rappel down. Hard to get down other wise one sticking. It can be done I have done it but not fun. Plenty of bow holders out there either the strap on or screw on type. You will get better at it but may want to keep another method of climbing as back up. If you do it several days in a row it will start to wear on you.
 

SamCo89

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
I’m 1-sticking with a 15” muddy pro, that has a Schafer cam cleat, with a 3 step aider. That’s my main climbing method, but I’m looking at another set of sticks, either API’s or Trophyline, for next season for more options.

i rappel down, with an atc & auto block. For me, rappelling is the easiest way to get down if you’re 1 sticking.

What I love about 1sticking is both the weight saving, & the ability to climb as high as I want. Next season I’ll probably switch to separate tether/rappel ropes, had a little experience the other week at 18ft, where I nicked my tether with my silky pocket saw. Still climbed about 10ft before I retied the rope, but I swear I could hear the rope creaking.

What I tell everyone that wants to 1-stick: you must practice. Saddle hunting in general is very personal & subjective, 1 sticking is twice as much. Every little detail can make or break a climb. Whether it’s your bridge not being adjusted right, your aider slipping off your steps, your tether falling because your not using a washer or gear tie, or simply setting up on the wrong side of an leaning tree.. you have to have your setup dialed in, & be 100% confident.

I think many people want to jump into 1 sticking because they see the others doing it, without fully understanding the facts.
 

SnowMaker

Six Pointer
So before I got into hunting I was a rock climber, was a guide even for more than 5 years. I leaned right towards saddle hunting because the system makes sense to me. If you hate the lone wolf sticks and want rid of them let me know please. I do get curious about some of the techniques people are using, @SamCo89 you're using an atc with autoblock for rappel, where are you attaching the autoblock? Just curious because a saddle and harness are similar but very different. I also get real curious as to why anyone uses ropeman devices or prusik tenders. Really to each their own I just get curious
 

SamCo89

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
So before I got into hunting I was a rock climber, was a guide even for more than 5 years. I leaned right towards saddle hunting because the system makes sense to me. If you hate the lone wolf sticks and want rid of them let me know please. I do get curious about some of the techniques people are using, @SamCo89 you're using an atc with autoblock for rappel, where are you attaching the autoblock? Just curious because a saddle and harness are similar but very different. I also get real curious as to why anyone uses ropeman devices or prusik tenders. Really to each their own I just get curious
Typically I connect the auto block under the atc, & biner to my right leg loop. Sometimes I’ll connect it to my right linesman’s loop, but I’m running the same size & color carabiner for both of those. So to avoid a potential accident, typically the leg loop.

I’m planning to purchase another saddle & replace my Kestrel Flex, I’m looking at either a TX5 or Covert Pro, that both have a dedicated loop on the lower leg section, for rappelling. I think there’s a couple others that offer that as a custom feature..

I may also switch to a Safeguard or all in one rappel device, just for ease of use. I was using my atc in guide mode for ascending, but the Grivel Mono Master I’m using with my 8mm rope, has the guide hole turned different than the other guide atc’s.

I had several occasions where the atc turned & the ropes reversed inside it. Lost my tension & definitely causes pucker factor when you go to sit down & start sliding.

To answer the question as to why folks use either option, it’s typically to avoid using both hands to tend your prusik. I love my Ropeman 2, if I need to take up slack it’s a simple pull up. I can also tighten up my tether more than I can using a prusik, if I’m trying to get closer to the tree.
 
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SnowMaker

Six Pointer
That's good it definitely works better below the device that autoblock. I hear people talk about rappelling with the block above the device which really boggles me. If I were to start one sticking, probably gonna next season, I'd go with the Petzl Gri Gri probably the 2. The Mad Rock Lifeguard or Safeguard is pretty much the same thing. I'm not gonna lie, I really hate hearing people using the atc guide in guide mode. Not just for this but for rock climbing as well. It has issues and tricks that have caused more than a few accidents
 

IE_88

Spike
There has been some great information shared here. After reading on here and looking in other places I am definitely going to try the 1 stick method. I like the idea that it is light weight and doesn’t limit the height I can climb. I may try 2 tethered climbing as well.
I like the idea of the rope man to replace prusik on lineman’s belt. It would be nice to be able to tighten lineman’s belt with one hand. I did see where someone tied a small rope as a prusik tender. That would save 50 bucks if it works. Thanks again for all of the advice.
 

Loganwayne

Ten Pointer
There has been some great information shared here. After reading on here and looking in other places I am definitely going to try the 1 stick method. I like the idea that it is light weight and doesn’t limit the height I can climb. I may try 2 tethered climbing as well.
I like the idea of the rope man to replace prusik on lineman’s belt. It would be nice to be able to tighten lineman’s belt with one hand. I did see where someone tied a small rope as a prusik tender. That would save 50 bucks if it works. Thanks again for all of the advice.
you can use a carabiner for a prusik tender as well, i did it almost all this season. not as smooth as a rope man but it works
 
I had a JX3 with Muddy Pro Sticks. Climbing was fine but getting into position to shoot without a platform was very difficult. I didn't miss a big one but could even get into position to practice on the deer I did see. I suggest shooting a ton out of your saddle before next season.
 

dubbeltap69

Six Pointer
Contributor
I had a JX3 with Muddy Pro Sticks. Climbing was fine but getting into position to shoot without a platform was very difficult. I didn't miss a big one but could even get into position to practice on the deer I did see. I suggest shooting a ton out of your saddle before next season.
What saddle are you using now if not the JX3?

I have a jx3 and agree, a platform is needed. Hopefully next year I'll have a much nicer single step with a good platform, and maybe a different saddle also.
 

Lowg08

Eight Pointer
I’d prefer to hunt from the ground honestly. I love spot and stalk and slipping that I learned this year from @appmtnhntr BUT the saddle has helped me out hunting the mountains.
 
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