Lone Wolf Released their $1,000 dollar crossover climber this week. The buzz I’ve heard ranges from “Why would you ever need a $1,000 stand!?” to “If you want the best, you gotta pay for it!”. Who is right?
Group One – “These prices are insane!”
Group one cannot believe someone would spend this kind of money on gear. I’ll speak for them here. “Mobile hunting” is a marketing term. Manufacturers have found a hip new niche to exploit. Titanium climbing sticks, billet aluminum treestands, custom sewn tree saddles… who needs that? Why are you paying thousands of dollars to drag tons of junk into the woods? After all, isn’t the goal to remain mobile? If that’s the case… just stay on the ground. It’s quieter, quicker, lighter and more MOBILE than ANY of the other options… If you need to get in a tree you can find a climber or old portable setup at a yard sale for 50 bucks. Spend the rest of the money you saved on gas to get to more property.. or heck, even on a lease!
Group Two – “Cry Once, Buy Once.“
Group two believes that the best gear in the world costs money. I’ll speak for them now. If it helps kill big bucks, it doesn’t matter how much it costs… sign me up. Why would I work this hard at deer hunting to go out there with subpar equipment and mess up a hunt. Why would you care that I spend this kind of money on gear when it doesn’t affect you? I could hunt permanent stands on private, but I prefer the run and gun style, I prefer the public land challenge, and I prefer to have the best product available. My bow is 2,000, my nonresident tag is 600 and my clothing is 3000.. why wouldn’t I spend 1,000 on the tool that physically puts me in position for the shot?
Group Three – “I just want to kill big deer.”
Group three is the middle ground. This is the group that I most identify with. We simply love to hunt deer and want to be as successful as possible. I’ll agree with group one that gear isn’t what gets the job done. Often the money and time spent looking at new toys IS better spent on experience. Scout more, spend less. If you know how deer operate, you don’t NEED much.
With that said, I agree with group two on the point that once you have put in your time and found the system that works for you, it can be worth investing in.
Avoid Paying Too Much
If you find you love hunting on the ground and that’s where you are most successful, then you’re golden… you can be a mobile hunter for cheap… but maybe you hate it or feel some elevation could make you better. This is where you can entertain some of these other, more expensive, options. BUT figure out what system you prefer before you just start buying stuff. There are trade shows and events where these manufacturers will bring their products for you to try. That’s a start, but you really need to try it in the field to know. Reach out to some friends or known gear junkies and ask to borrow a few things. Something that looks awesome online or at the show can be a complete disaster before daylight. Maybe try some of the ideas from group one. Yard sale climbers and stands will teach you what you like and don’t like. Then you know what you’re looking for when it comes time to upgrade. The cheap stuff will be easy to resell. If you’re a newer hunter… TAKE YOUR TIME. I hate seeing guys have to unload their brand-new stuff on marketplace because it didn’t make their hopes and dreams come true. Remember, these products are exciting… proof that marketing dollars are well spent.
Be smart.. hunt hard.