Treestand vs. Ground Blind: Which is Best for Hunting?

April 26, 2024

I’ve hunted from treestands and ground blinds for years, but each has its place. So I’ve written this article to help you decide if a ground blind or treestand is best for your hunting situation.

By the end of this article, you’ll understand the benefits and drawbacks of hunting from treestands and ground blinds.

Let’s get started!

Treestand Pros & Cons

There are many different types of treestands. Ladder stands, climber stands, hanging stands, and two-man stands cover most of them. For the sake of simplicity, we’re going to lump all of these together when discussing their benefits and drawbacks.

Benefits of Hunting Out of a Treestand

  • Higher off the ground
    • Better visibility
    • Better shot placement opportunities
    • Prey is less likely to see or smell you
  • Versatility
  • Allows the hunter to blend in better

Getting higher off the ground has benefits while hunting, similar to having the high ground in battle. You can see the game animal better and from further out, so you can prepare to take the most ethical shot possible. The animals are also less likely to see or smell you, though they can still spot you in a treestand and smell where you walked up to the tree.

Because there are many types of treestands, they offer hunters the versatility they need to hunt across a wide range of habitats. I’ve used climber stands when hunting public land and ladder stands when hunting private property. While I could use a climber stand on private property, I couldn’t use a ladder stand on public land because it’s too much to carry in and out each time I hunt.

Since treestands are relatively minimalistic, they tend to blend in better than a ground blind. However, ladder stands are easy to spot.

Now that we know the pros of treestands let’s discuss the cons.

Drawbacks of Hunting from a Treestand

  • Safety risks
  • Expensive
  • Lack of comfort
  • Must be still when animals are approaching
  • Need big trees

Hunting out of a treestand comes with some risks of falling and injuring yourself, even when wearing a safety harness. Always be extra careful when hunting out of a treestand.

I was looking at a new treestand earlier this year and was shocked by how expensive they’ve become. Even a cheap stand wasn’t cheap, but I live by the motto, “Buy nice or buy twice,” and this definitely rings true when buying a treestand.

I’ve sat in many treestands and never thought they were comfortable. The seat is either made of fabric that makes you sit weird or metal that hurts your rear end and cuts off circulation to your legs. Some have nice foam seats now, but they are the more expensive tree stands that make you cry a little when they’re stolen.

Treestands also don’t conceal the hunter very well. Yes, you can blend in better if you remain still while the deer approach the area. However, they can easily spot you if you make a sudden move.

Unless you’re hunting from a tripod stand, which isn’t a treestand, in my opinion, you need at least one big tree around to secure your treestand, too; otherwise, you can’t hunt that area. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve been frustrated because I found the perfect location to hunt but couldn’t find a suitable tree in which to put my treestand.

Ground Blind Pros & Cons

There are a few different ground blinds, but they’re mostly the same. They pop up, have windows, and are lightweight, giving hunters many reasons to love ground blinds.

Benefits of Hunting Out of a Ground Blind

  • Lightweight
  • Use in an open field or wooded area
  • Very comfortable
  • Little risk of falling and injuring yourself

Many years ago, on a draw hunt with my dad, I carried a ground blind to set up on an opening. Besides being a little awkward to carry as a child, I didn’t struggle carrying it because it was lightweight.

Hunting from a ground blind allows you to hunt in the forest or an open field because you don’t need trees to set it up. I’ve hunted in the middle of a farmer’s field from a ground blind. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have been able to hunt that area.

Ground blinds are way more comfortable than treestands because you can bring a lawn chair and have a comfy seat. Plus, they protect you from the elements when hunting in nasty weather, while a treestand leaves you exposed. You can also move a little more and stretch your legs without being overly concerned about scaring off the deer. This can matter alot if you have limited time and limited acres to hunt deer.

Lastly, ground blinds don’t require climbing a tree and risking falling. You could still trip and injure yourself while walking to your treestand, so ground blinds have a lower risk of injury.

Even though ground blinds have several pros, you must be aware of several cons before purchasing one for your next hunt.

Drawbacks of Hunting from a Ground Blind

  • It is harder to spot animals
  • Eye-level with the animals
  • It doesn’t blend in very well

Being on the ground makes it harder to see animals approaching and get your 30-06 hunting rifle on target. And while they make some great 30-06 deer hunting ammo, that only helps if you can lift your gun without spooking the deer.  I have sat in a ground blind and been surprised by animals several times because they seem to appear out of nowhere when you’re at eye level with them. Speaking of eye level, this means they’re more likely to spot you.

I’ve set up many ground blinds, and they’ve never perfectly blended into the environment. They always look out of place and require you to thoroughly brush them in to look halfway natural. You’ll never convince me that the animals don’t know it’s there. That’s why I think it’s crucial to set up and leave the ground blind in place for a while before hunting it. This gives the animals plenty of time to get accustomed to the ground blind being around and not being a threat.

Parting Shots

Now that you’ve finished reading about the pros and cons of treestands and ground blinds, it’s time to decide which will work best for you. Or, you could be like me and use both since each offers benefits that the other doesn’t.

Treestands are great for solo adult hunters in wooded areas, whereas ground blinds are the best option if you plan to take your kids or don’t have large trees on which to hang a stand.

Best of luck this season!

Sam Jacobs.

Sam is a passionate advocate for Second Amendment rights and an avid historian. As lead writer, he delves into the intersection of firearms, freedom, and corporate power. With a penchant for defending individual liberties, his work sparks discussions in various publications and platforms.