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BRULEDRIFTER

What do you do?

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You're 15-20ft up a tree in a stand.... you have on your safety harness and then, ooopsie! You fall out!

What then? I've asked this before with no response but I thought I would do it again.

So how do ya go about getting youself back up or down?

I've pondered this and thought about having a few screw in steps in my pocket to maybe be able to pull myself back into the stand. Or else just hug the tree and cut yourself free and hopefully you can shimmy down.

Anyone ever been in this perdicament? How did you get out of it?

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apparantly this hasn't actually happened to many people if you're getting no responses...but, if it happened to me, first thing I'd do is look around to make sure no one saw me just fall out of my stand...then I'd see if I could reach my backpack for a snack to munch on while I pondered just what to do next...but I would really think, if you had you're saftey harness hooked up correctly you'd at least be able to pull yourself back up...I use screw in steps and hang on stands only so, I'd "think" I'd be able to reposition myself on one of the steps to get back up...I could see where a problem could arise with a ladder stand and you ended up swinging on the backside of the tree with no ladder or steps within reach...

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It hasn't happend to me "yet," but if you are tied off properly getting back into your stand isn't that hard.

When you are in the seated position you need your strap on your harness to be "almost" taught. Now if you should ever fall, the lowest your butt will ever get is to about your platform level (if there is some stretch in your strap/rope/harness.)

Hang a stand a few feet off the ground and "fall off" slowly. You will see that it isn't that bad to get back on.

It is far from comfortable hanging there, but beats the [PoorWordUsage] out of falling 25 feet. If that ever happened I don't think you would feel a thing.

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I guess I think more of if the stand itself goes tumbling down or if your climber slips down the tree or breaks or something.

I was just thinking of this as I was researching stands and have had this thought cross my mind a few times while sitting up in a tree.

I think I'll just kiss my butt good bye and cut the rope! wink

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I make sure that if I was to fall, I wouldn't fall head down, which you'd need a good set of Abs to crunch your body back up so your head is above your waist.

I never use climbing stands personally. There are too many trees that aren't suitable for climbing stands in MN, ND where I hunt.

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Maybe I'm wrong but I'm thinking that if I was 15-20 feet up and fell, I might not be in a condition that will allow me to climb back up into the stand. Hopefully, I haven't broken anything but assuming I had, my first thought would be to assess my injuries, apply first-aid and then call for help if I have that ability with me.

Eidt: Oops. blush

Maybe I need to take more reading lessons. I didn't catch it that you had your harness on so then your stuck hanging around.

Carry on.

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If I have cell phone service, phone a friend.

If not, I guess I would cut it, and attempt my best 5 point-of-contact Parachute Landing Fall. I didn't break anything at Airborne so that would be my best gamble...yikes.

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If I fell out of the tree and was caught by the harness I'd probably just climb back into the stand. The way I hook myself up I wouldn't even fall below the platform. If I hurt myself and couldn't make it back up I'd bear hug the tree and disconnect from the harness and slide down to my nearest tree step.

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Well if you have the right kind of harness and the proper length tether it shouldn't be a big deal. If you have the wrong harness on it could end up compressing your lungs long enough so you could die, or you could end up upside down if you have a really bad one. It's been a while but I remember seeing some info about bad harness setups. Maybe while I was with my kids at their gun safety classes. As for the length of the tether - seems to me that shorter would be better.

I am willing to bet that more injuries occur getting into or out of a stand than from folks actuallyl falling out. There always seems to be that pucker moment when you have to get your balance kaddywompus, take the step that's just a bit of a stretch, or shiney around to get seated properly.

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Great question and hope not many have the experience to tell you what they did.

I am thinking you will be alot lower from your stand than you think. Most harnesses have a slip portion on the strap that connects you to the tree, that would hang you lower than the stand.

Depending on what kind of stand and climbing mechanism you use this will bring in too many variables.

I use climbing sticks with portables, ladder stands and climbers, and each would bring a different scenario.

Hopefully you could "swing" yourself back to the tree or your steps. If you fell out of a climber, I think you would be SOL.

The more I think of this, I think the cell phone will find a new location on my person.

Use to leave it in my back pack, no good if I tumble.

I know this don't answer your question, but I have no direct solutions.

Funny how we are concerned about not hitting the ground, but no way of getting back up.

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Attach your teather to the tree above your stand allowing you only enough length to comfortably sit and stand up. This way you can't fall any where. What point would a teather longer than this serve if you fell you could swing into a tree step.

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Quote:
If I have cell phone service, phone a friend.

Heck, I'd order pizza.

Sounds like a practice run to determine the optimal tether length is in order.

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personally I always keep my tether snug when in a sitting position safer to nap that way. the newest copy of deer and deer hunting has a great article on this very subject called safety harness survival every one should read this maybe someone who has a subsciption could post it here off line

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I have that copy but haven't read it yet, I borrow them from a buddy. He read the article and told me the highlights, apparently if the crotch strap is putting pressure in just the right spot in your groin area, circulation will be cut off and you will be dead in 5 minutes. I will read the article tonight if I can stay aw........ke. Oops just dozed off for a second!

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One of the best tools I have found for being safe in a tree is a 30' length of rope tied to the tree 6' above my stand. On this rope I tie a prusik knot (link Below). the prusik knot is a knot climbers use. The knot is able to slide up the tree as you go up and down as you go down. if you happen to fall, the prusik will tighten up on your 30' rope and you won't fall any further than the slack in your harness. In the situation where you fall out of your stand, or fall on the way up/or down, you can hang there for a minute, tie a loop in the 30' rope at waist level or just a little bit lower, and then get your foot in it and use it as a stirrup to regain your footing and get back to where you need to be. The added bonus is that you are clipped into a safety rope from the time you leave the ground, until the time your feet are firmly planted. The biggest key to survival is wearing a good quality, well fitted harness. I wear my harness under my heavy hunting clothes so it is snug all of the time, and always fits the same way. I have also "practiced" falling out of trees at low levels to see what it will feel like to be hanging and have to climb back up. I used to work at an outdoors retail store and we would demo harnesses for customers from time to time. It may seem somewhat obsessive compulsive, but I really don't want to die doing what I love. Here is info on the prusik:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prusik

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And hope you don't land against a screw-in step !!! That's going to hurt.

Ya, played that game last year when a screw in foot peg gave out. My stomach was black and blue and my belly button looked like a black hole. I still have a big knob from where it hit. NOT FUN!

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My Fall Guy system wouldn't let me get far off the stand if it worked properly. If the whole stand fell, well then I'd slowly slide down the tree knowing the system would stop me instantly if I started to go to fast.

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Hopefully I'm never in this situation but if I am I may have it covered. Years ago when I first started using a harness I thought the same thing. So, I tried it out. I hung my stand about 7 feet up and slowly "fell out" to see how to get back in. I just found my steps and climbed back in. I'm sure it will be a little different if it ever really happens but at least I will have a little bit of experience. Good luck and stay safe!

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I use ladder stands but I have question. We have guys in our group that use portables with screw in steps. Years ago I found a friend at the base of his tree unconscious because his top step broke as he was exiting his stand at dusk. How do you attach yourself to the tree entering and exiting?

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That is a great question as I feel that is the most dangerous time. Going in and out with all those clothes, depending on every tree step, etc is when you are gonna most like take a tumble.

I have a fall guy system that attachs 25 feet up the tree (I dont sit that high though). I attach it at ground level and take it off on ground level. I do however, switch to a different tether when in the stand as I think the fall guy is too loud. But that is done very carefully. So I am tethered from the moment I leave the ground until I get back to the ground.

A PIECE OF ADVICE: Your portable stand was made in Ohio or Florida or somewhere by someone making minimum wage. Maybe the assembler partied a little too hard the night before. I will NOT trust my life to every crimp and connection point this guy made. So I recommend that you go to the hardware store and buy a few bolts and strands of cable and DOUBLE all the key parts that hold up your platform. It takes about a half hour.

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I use ladder stands but I have question. We have guys in our group that use portables with screw in steps. Years ago I found a friend at the base of his tree unconscious because his top step broke as he was exiting his stand at dusk. How do you attach yourself to the tree entering and exiting?

You should be attached with a lineman's belt while ascending/decending, and then a tree strap while in stand and entering/exiting.

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In my previous post about using a prusik knot and long rope you will see that you are connected to a harness and a safety rope the entire time. Here is a Youtube link to the knot.

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