5 Best Ladder Stand For Bow Hunting Reviews (2019 Guide)
Today I'm going to show you 5 best ladder stand for bow hunting reviews. Besides that, you'll know how to pick a good ladder stand through my ultimate check list.
The best part? I also point out the difference of tripod vs ladder stand, ladder stand vs hang on later in this guide. So, let's get started:
Top Rated Ladder Tree Stands:
Seat Size (W x D)
Platform Size (W x D)
20" x 15.5"
30" x 20"
22" x 16"
18" x 26"
20" x 17"
20" x 32"
25” x 14”
25" x 32"
13.25" x 26.25
24" x 25"
Best Ladder Stand for Bow Hunting Reviews:
1. Rivers Edge RE651 1-Man Ladder Stand LOCKDOWN 21 1-Man
I will give a confirm nod to the River Edge RE-51 when it comes to stability, safety and fluid performance in the field.
The Gridlock Safety system allows you to attach the top of the stand to make it safer for the initial climb when you want to connect the top straps.
It also features a Bark Biting Stabilizer, which holds any tree firm and tight.
Quiet Ladderlock System
You will also get access to the LadderLcok System that prevents loose of ladder joints and to encourage silent entry and exists.
Thanks to the fact that this stand houses a 1-piece base to eliminate any form of noise.
Mesh Shelf Under The Seat
Another impressive feature is the flip-up padded seat with a frame, which gives you more comfort while on the lookout for deer.
The best part is that the seat is very easy to setup-unlike the nightmare of other stands that are pretty hard to put together.
Comfortable For Your Feet
With a 42” wide platform and a well-thought-out flip-out footrest, the Lockdown offers you plenty of room to stretch out your legs with enough space to stand and shoot.
In my opinion, this is most comfortable ladder tree stand in this list.
Removable Shooting Rail
Did you also know that you can remove the shooting rail out of the way for bowhunting?
Yes, you can.
While that is true, you can as well set the rail to any depth and height that works best for you.
How High is this Stand?
The Edge RE651 1-Man Ladder is 19' 6" high.
With a 91 lbs weight, this ladder stands happens to be the heaviest on this list.
And we are still wondering why the company didn’t make the shooting rail a padded design and comfy for increased comfort.
Hence, the included non-padded shooting rail will easily make some noise in the wood.
- Easy to put together
- Very secure and sturdy
- Safe and secure
- Comfortable mesh seat
- Padded seat mesh
- Large platform for added flexibility
- Non-padded shooting rail
- Heavy and a bit bulky
2. X-Stand Treestands The Duke Ladderstand The Duke 20' Single-Person Ladderstand Hunting Tree Stand, Black
I love the Duke 20' Single-Person stand due to its unparalleled design.
One of the gorgeous things about this bad boy is the fact that it offers a weather defender powder coating design to prevent it from bad weather.
With a 79 lbs weight, it also comes with a Helix oval tubing to give the stand the extreme strength and sturdiness to carry your weight firmly.
Comfortable Armrest and Seat
While this unit flaunts a padded armrest to give you additional comfort, it also features a 22" x 16" comfort flex mesh seat to give you all-day comfort and a perfect shot on prey.
In addition to that, the footrest is foldable, meaning you can flip it up and down or even decide to remove it totally.
Padded Shooting Rail
As if that isn't enough, the Duke Ladderstand also took the extra time to make sure the gun rest is well padded to give you unhindered target on your prey.
So, you have the freedom to flip or totally remove the rail if you’re a bowhunter.
The included stealth silencers deserve massive praise; it offers self-lubricating nylon washers to prevent noise and metal to metal contact.
While the Duke Stand does a pretty nice job in offering you a drink holder and dual accessory hooks for bows, it is also strong enough to hold your rifle.
Jaw Safety System
The patent jaw system is a stupendous feature that lets you secure the stand to the tree and to the ground.
This will keep you safe and give you plenty of room and comfort for the all-day hunt while sitting.
While the Duke offers a platform size of 18" x 26", it appears to be a bit uncomfy for big guys, making it a little bit difficult to move around.
- Included cup holder
- Easy to grip Helix Tubing
- Accessory hook
- Adjustable shooting rail
- Flip out footrest
- Padded shooting rail
- Made to eliminate noise
- Water resistant
- Great customer service
- Smaller platform size
- A bit of pain to put together
3. Millennium Treestands L-110-SL Single Ladder Stand with Folding Seat, 21'
The Millennium Treestand is one of the most comfortable ladder stands you can find on the market.
It sports a platform size of 20" x 32" as well as a foldable seat to give you much comforts and flexibility.
The stand is spacious and has a lot of space for you to change positions, and move around to get a perfect shot on target.
Dual Rail System
The dual rail ladder feature is very sturdy to climb. It allows you to hold on to and makes the ladder system much stronger than your conventional section ladder.
The dual rail will ensure it doesn't bow out or wobble when you put your weight on it.
Tallest Ladder Stand
Featuring a 92 lbs weight, and four ladder section, the millennium is currently the tallest stand on this list.
The dual rail ladder system also allows you to place the Stands at different heights, ranging from 8 feet to 21 feet, all to give you the right flexible spot for a perfect shot.
Adjustable Shooting Rail
The adjustable shooting rail is a big plus here. If you're a rifle hunter, you will love the adjustable rail.
The rail lets you get to the level you’ll need, and keeps you rock-solid when you're making that first shot.
While all those are fine and good, the included shooting rail tends to be a bitter pill for bowhunters.
We cannot neglect the fact that it can act as an obstacle when drawing and aiming with your bow.
The included fortress is another comfortable addition that will keep your feet in that perfect condition while waiting for deer.
With a foldable seat size of 20" x 17", the millennium single ladder stand happens to be one of the roomiest and comfy ladder stands you can find around.
If you're a bowhunter, all you have to do is to put the seat right back up to give you plenty of room to make a perfect and flexible shot on target.
The truth is, the Millennium is expensive, but if you consider the comfort you are getting, there is just no comparison.
We also noticed that the stand needs two persons to get it up and to worsen the situation, it doesn’t have a clear direction on how to set it up.
Another downside is that the seat is not removable and can't be taken down if you want to leave the rest of the stand-up.
- Sturdy design
- Plenty of room and space
- Dual ladder system for stronger built
- Most comfortable seat
- Safelink included
- Foldable footrest
- Easy and quiet to set up
- No additional brace required
- Needs two persons to set it up
- No explicit instruction
- The seat is not removable
4. Summit Solo Pro Ladder Stand
Sporting 39"x32" roomy platform size and a foldable seat, with a removable gun rest, the Summit Solo Ladder Stand ranks as one of the best rated ladder tree stands for rifle and bowhunters.
It features a steel construction and a heavy-duty design, which provides a more reliable and comfortable performance all season long.
Biggest Cushion Seat Size
The size of the padded bench style seat of the Summit is huge due to its colossal size, stuffed with great comfort compared to others on this list.
Padded And Fold Up Shooting Rail
While the Summit Stand offers a padded and foldable shooting rail to give you a smooth target on your prey, it also provides a powder-coated steel design and full backrest to add to your comfort.
The impressive 83.6 lbs weight of this unit can hold a weight capacity of 300lbs without wobbling.
One of our major complaints with this brand is that it only offers 18’ height, making it the shortest stand on this list.
Another downside is that it has no footrest, which may cause fatigue to the leg.
- Sturdy and comfortable
- Quiet, padded and foldable shooting rail
- Shortest footrest
- A bit heavy and bulky
- No footrest
5. Guide Gear 18' Jumbo Ladder Tree Stand
The Guide Gear 18” comes with a large 24" x 25” platform size, which is best ladder stand for big guys.
Most Lightweight Portable Ladder Stand
With a 68.5 lbs weight, this Ladder Stand appears to be the lightest stand on our list, meaning you can easily set it up and down.
Comfy Armrests and Padded Seated
The Guide does not only offer armrests that provide you with maximum comfort and steady shot on deer.
It also has an oversized seat/platform and flips up seats to make the stand super comfortable for sitting and standing for all day long.
The armrests are low enough for archery and high enough for safety.
Flip-Up Shooting Rail
While the shooting rail offers a 3 pinned ladder section for flawless storage and transport, it also comes with a flip-up footrest for added comfort.
Seat Silencing Pad
The 2 seat pad silencers are a pretty nice feature that makes this stand a force to reckon with.
The feature will help keep your movement quiet in the field with less or no noise.
One major gripe about this unit is that it takes a lot of time to assemble, and the painting isn't of high quality.
They peel off easily if you flake it off with just a fingernail.
It also offers a cushion fabric, which is noisy and the seat size of 13.25" x 26.25" is quite small, resulting in less comfort.
- Rugged steel construction
- Durable and long lasting
- Two stabilizer straps
- Adjustable support bar for secure attachment
- Flip-up seat
- Flip-up shooting rail
- Flip-up footrest
- Huge platform area
- Good height to seat
- Setups take time
- Low-quality Painting
- Smallest seat size
- Unstable seat
- Unimpressive customer service
- Poor manual
- Scratched paint
- Noisy cushion fabric
Types of Ladder Stands for Deer Hunting:
Ladder stands for bow hunting are divided into two types:
- Single man ladder stand
- 2 person tree stand
One Man Ladder Tree Stands
As the name implies, this kind of ladder stand is built to accommodate only one person.
The design is usually lightweight and is constructed so that a single person can easily haul the stand through the woods.
Also, a single ladder stand comprises a ladder for climbing and a seat for the hunter to rest while awaiting the game.
Most of the seats have a backrest which you can recline on for maximum comfort as you wait for the prey to come to your targeted spot.
Double Man Ladder Stands
Just like the single ladder stand, the 2 man ladder stand comprises a ladder (for climbing into the stand) and a seat for the hunter.
However, the 2 Man Ladder Stand can accommodate two hunters conveniently without any discomfort.
It comes with a seat wide enough to contain you and your hunting partner, and it’s also stable enough to hold the occupants due to its firm and durable design that is well-rooted to the ground.
If you wish to have your kids or wife to talk to while waiting for the game to come by, then check this article to find out more about 2 man ladder stand.
How to Choose the Best Ladder Treestands for Bow Hunting (Ultimate Checklist):
In this section, I’m going to show you how to pick a good treestand for bowhunting. Later in this guide, you'll see the pros and cons between hang-on, tripod vs ladder stand. So keep reading:
How Comfortable is the Seat?
When making a choice of a treestand, the seat should be one of the major priorities to consider:
- First, it must be wide with a cushion to accommodate you and also give you the needed flexibility to shoot on games. Don’t go for a metal seat due to inconvenience.
- Secondly, the backrest is needed to avoid hurting your back in a long sitting.
- And most importantly, the seat must fold up flat against the tree to give you more space for shooting when the deer or hogs appear in your range.
What's the Platform Size of the Stand?
Before taking the plunge on a single ladder stand ensure you figure out if the platform size is big enough to enable you to stand and lean your back against the tree for maximum comfort.
For the best result, the ladder stand should come with a platform that extends backward as close to the tree as possible, so you won’t get picked off.
Does the Ladder Stand Offer A Footrest?
A good stand should have a footrest as this prevents the legs from hanging in the air while waiting for a big bulk.
Why is this important?
There are days you're sitting on the stand from sunrise to sunset without a footrest, it can soon make your foot tired.
So, ensure you consider choosing a ladder stand that has provision for a footrest so your feet will be relaxed while waiting for your game.
What is the Height of the Stand to the Rail?
One of the drawbacks I have noticed about ladder stands, in my opinion, is that most of them aren't tall enough.
A ladder stand should be at least 20 feet so as to keep you out of sight as much as possible.
This is truth about stand height:
The higher stand is, the less chance you get cought by deer. So you should be off sight as much as possible.
Any ladder stand you are opting for may likely have a handrail-this is optional! Typically, handrails add more security for the hunter while sitting inside the stand.
But, their common drawback is that they ususally in the way of bow shooting, so choose ones that are adjustable or removable.
So, check it out to see if the Stand you are going to offers this feature.
Is the Stand Solid Enough?
No hunter will like to fall off the stand while sitting on it. To avoid this, you want to choose a ladder stand that is made of steel material. Our recommended weight capacity:
- 300 lbs weight capacity for a single ladder stand
- 500 lbs weight capacity for a double man ladder stand
Is it Quiet?
The quietude of the ladder stand is another determinant of selecting one. Don't opt for one that is likely to squeak with every movement made on it. As it can make your deer run away.
A good one should be quiet not only when moving but when climbing.
Easy to Install
Finally, choose a ladder stand that will be easier for you to install. Preferably, choose one that you can install by yourself.
Hang-On Vs Ladder Stand
So if you have to choose between a ladder stand and a hang on stand, which would you want and why? Check it now:
Easy to get into
Easy to set up
Need to cut tree limbs
The hangers are more comfortable to carry around and pack. They also come with enough flexibility to allow you to face either direction on it.
You pack them up and relocate to another hunting spot.
Ladder stands have more comfort than hang-on stands.
Apart from the fact that they are roomy, they come with legs that hold the ladder firmly to the ground, which makes them much more safer to use.
Hang-on is less visible than ladder stands. You can easily conceal them by hanging it above a limb.
You can also adjust them to your desired height to get the best cover/backdrop. They are usually quieter, and less evident to everything in the woods.
Easy To Get Into
The nice thing about ladder Stands is that they are easy to get into. They come with full comfort and allows you to climb the stand with less hassle.
You can also face either direction with a climber, and have much freedom and flexibility to move.
Easy To Set Up
Now to the bad side: ladder stands are hard to set up all by yourself. They usually need about two people to set it up and down.
But hang-on, on the other side, is easy to set up, they are also a lot quieter to use in the woods.
While ladders are known to be bulky and stable, they are also heavier.
Hang-on gives you the option to choose any height of your choice. They also offer more coverage from the tree branches to secure your outline.
Our take will be on a ladder stand if you are the type of hunter that moves less or stay at a particular spot for a long period of time.
The fact that Ladder Stand have more rooms, easier to get into and are much safer than anything else make them a top choice for bowhunters.
However, if you're an avid hunter that is always on the move, then a hang-on Stand will be a perfect choice for you, due to their lightweight design.
Tripod vs Ladder stand
You might think to yourself: "When and where to use a tripod deer stand and a ladder stand?"
Don't worry! We are going to show you some of the pros and cons of these, to help you make a well-informed decision.
Easy to assemble
Easy To Assemble
Ladder stands are quite easy to assemble compared to tripods.
Although they may pop and creak when climbing, they are still much faster than tripods when it comes to setup.
Due to their compact design, tripods are much lighter than ladder stands. This means you can easily pack them up and have them located in a new hunting area.
On the other hand, ladder stands are bulky and are more cumbersome than a tripod stand.
As earlier said, tripods remain the most movable and packable stand due to their lightweight design. You can pack them on the go and locate to the next deer location.
Although tripods are comfortable, they are still less comfortable due to their smaller sizes, compared to ladder Stands.
Tripods are great in areas like corn fields, soybeans field, etc, where there aren't enough big trees to hang a ladder stands.
The tripods allow you to maneuver yourself into such situations and places where you can get an elevated advantage over the whitetail deer.
In this case, you can spot the deer and take a good shot from your tripod.
The type of Stand you will choose between these two will depend on your hunting areas and the pros and cons of each unit.
The fact that ladder Stands will always blend in better with the hunting environment and offer fewer chances for deer to notice your presence, makes them the goto choice in our own opinion.
I'll share with you some pro tips to make your hunting days much more comfortable in this section. Keep reading:
Safety Guide with Ladder Stand:
Your safety is paramount, and you should do all you can to stay safe in the ladder stand.
- The first step to safety starts with setting the ladder stand up and securing it well enough to avoid falling off.
- Always put on a safety harness/lifeline when on the stand so you'll be safe even falling off.
How to Prevent Rust for Ladder Stand:
One of the most effective ways to prevent rust for your ladder stand is to spray truck bed liner to the stands to prevent rusk and make it look muddy.
Take Care of Wind:
Wind proves to be a security risk which ranges from pulling your ladder down to tossing off your bows and arrows where you hung them.
Take extra precaution to forestall experiencing deadlock as a result of the wind's activities.
How to Free Your Hands With Bow Hanger:
You might not always keep your bow to your body, so find a bow hanger to keep your bow, quiver or grunt tube in place.
You can screw the hanger into the tree and hang your bow there and only take hold of it when your targeted game is around.
Take care with how you hang your bow because the wind might move it a bit, which will attract the attention of the deer (if it's close-by).
In some locales, screwing bow hangers into the trees is illegal as well as harm the trees.
So verify the conditions of using such there before doing so, or you can make use of a Third Hand Universal Tree Stand Bow Holder.
How to Camouflage a Ladder Stand?
You should take the precaution of being on camouflage when bow hunting. This act will easily hide you and your presence won't be noticed.
When doing so, you can use a camouflage blind that is the same as the leaves of the tree where your ladder is.
What's the Bottom Line?
The best ladder tree stand for the money that blew other brands out is the X-Stand Treestands The Duke Ladderstand The Duke 20' Single-Person Ladderstand Hunting Tree Stand, Black.
The reason why this unit gets the highest vote is that:
- It offers a weather defender powder coating design to prevent it from bad weather
- It has a Helix oval tubing to give the stand the extreme strength and sturdiness to carry your weight firmly
- The padded armrest and 22" x 16" comfort flex mesh seat, gives you comfort even when shooting prey
- Foldable and flip-up footrest
- Padded shooting rail
- Included stealth silencers offer self-lubricating nylon washers to prevent noise and metal on metal contact
- It comes with drink holder and two accessory hooks for your bow
- The Jaw safety system lets you secure the stand to the tree to the ground.
All these exceptional features are nicely and neatly packed in the X-Stand Treestands. It will be a wise choice if you decide to go with this stand for the next season hunt.
Did we fail to mention any of your favorite stand on our list?
Do you have any thought or experience about the best ladder stand for bow hunting to share with us? Let us know in the comments below.