Safety Tip #2: Always Unload Your Weapon Before Climbing into a Stand

Marlin 30-30 Lever Action RifleUnloading your firearm or securing your arrows before climbing into a treestand or ground blind is a step that seems like common sense, and that’s because it is.  Most of the ways to prevent accidents and remain safe, rely on common sense.  But it can be easily forgotten if you are in a rush or just excited about the upcoming hunt.  Slow down and take your time.  If you are a few minutes late, so what.  Rushing into a stand is not only an opportunity for mishaps, but your likely to sweat or make more noise which can alert deer in your area.

I like to still hunt on my way into and out of my treestad locations.  So I keep one round in the chamber or the primer on the nipple (muzzleloader)when moving through the woods just in case I should walk up on or jump a deer that stops long enough for a shot.  Once I reach my stand, I unload the weapon or remove the primer and do not replace the round or primer until I am settled in the stand.

The same goes for bow hunting.  You do not want to be climbing a tree and moving into a stand with loose or unsecured arrows tipped with 2,3, or 4 razor blades bouncing around.  First off you can be easy cut, 2nd you can damage your equipment, and last, an arrow clanging down the side of tree, smacking your metal steps along the way makes a hell of a racket.

These same principles apply to entering and exiting a ground blind as well.  Your arrows or rifle could get hung up on the blind walls, zippers, or branches (natural blind), or your could trip and cause a safety mishap.  Take as much care entering a blind as you would an elevated stand even if you’re not off the ground.

Follow this basic rule and you will be more safe and are likely to have better luck on your next hunting adventure.

– Randy

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