Illegal Treestands - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-30-2018, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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Illegal Treestands

I have a question that maybe some of you hunters that have been climbing trees on state land since the good old days could answer:

Was it at one time illegal to use climbers on state land ?

I remember back in the day there was a regulation stating it was illegal to damage trees on state land (and assume that regulation still stands) and guys would argue that you couldn't use a climber for that reason. Many of those early treestands , like the Baker, did tear up the bark pretty good. And then there were guys that would argue that any damage done to the tree was superficial and did no real damage to the tree. But were stands ever specifically banned, or was it a grey area ?

I never bow hunted on state land, so I didn't pay real close attention at the time, but I do remember guys debating this subject years ago. The recent post regarding fall restraints on state game lands got me thinking about this.
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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 12:21 AM
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Damage to the tree was the issue. One could use climbers. I have heard stories where GCO accompanied hunters back to their tree to see if there was damage to the tree.
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 05:26 AM
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I think by the letter of the law the climbers with more aggressive teeth may in fact be illegal, but since the PGC and DCNR are effectively in the junkyard business with all the ladder and hang on stands that aren't removed within the prescribed deadlines, how can they honestly enforce a guy toting a Summit around chewing up a little bark? It's one of those things as a hunter I think you just have to use common sense and realize that 99% of the Wardens and Deputies you will run across will do the same, and if you draw the short straw and have to deal with one of those 1% specials, you just chalk one up in the loss column and move on with a story about that nutjob deputy you encountered.
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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 06:32 AM
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Simply put, tree portable tree stands are not illegal, what is illegal is any damage that is done to a tree by a climbing tree stand. If the bark is cut though to the cambium layer, it is considered that damage has been done because a cut that deep offers access to insects and diseases that enter trees through damage to the bark. Not choosing a thin barked tree such as a beech or birch lessens the chances of doing damage.

When you are up to your butt in alligators, it is hard to remember your intent was to drain the swamp. Stay focused!
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:05 AM
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My old Baker did more damage to my "bark" than any tree... LOL.

I replaced it with an API that had 2 - 1" spikes that came off both sections. What I did was wrap those spikes with rubber tape, sort of ended up with bulbs on the ends. After about 3 seasons the tips would poke out and I re-taped. No issues with climbing in fact that stand was the most stable that I've owned. Several officers commented on the tape "good idea type stuff" - none had any problems.

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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:10 AM
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If you used a Baker you must have some age. I was on a hunt back in the 90's where one guy said someone done him a favor by stealing his Baker stand. He was able to get one now that was much safer.
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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:13 AM
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i borrowed a baker one time, got about 6 feet up and slid back down, readjusted it, got about 10 feet up and slid back down...went home while my pants were still clean and i was alive.
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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icemole View Post
Several officers commented on the tape "good idea type stuff" - none had any problems.
You must have bad luck Icemole. I hunt public land quite a bit and I haven't been checked or even seen a Conservation Officer,,,er,,Game Warden in the woods since around 1998 or 1999. I'm not complaining, I'm glad to be left alone,,they must spend all their time picking on you.

Listen, or your tongue will make you deaf.

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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:39 AM
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I shot several deer from a baker stand. I did alert one as the Baker stand made a squeaking sound as I stood; however, I got that buck on the last day last hour of the season. He was a beautiful 8 point buck with 3 white stocking feet. My API is the most comfortable stand I have used.

The problem with selecting a good tree stand is that the trails always tend to lead direct to the best straight trees with the best bark with the least amount of low limbs. So the deer are walking directly at the hunter, directly under, then directly away lessening the chances of a good kill shot and increasing they will pick up scent the hunter has left at the bottom of the tree.

Oak, popular and ash trees are good quite climbing trees with good bark.
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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 09:43 AM
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You could always tell the guys using baker tree stands if they took their shirts. They were the ones with scars on their chests and on the inside of their forearms. Back when they started to become popular half the guys I worked with would be in the maintenance shop over lunch building Baker stands. Manhy of them had skid marks from sliding down trees.
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When you are up to your butt in alligators, it is hard to remember your intent was to drain the swamp. Stay focused!
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