Treestand Video Tip: How to Make an Effective, Inexpensive Aider

An aider helps you climb higher into a tree without carrying an extra climbing stick. Here’s how to make an effective, inexpensive aider.

Treestand Video Tip: How to Make an Effective, Inexpensive Aider

As I get older — I was born in 1965 — I prefer accessing portable treestands with the aid of climbing sticks instead of screw-in treesteps. Truth be told, I like ladder stands best of all for safe climbing, but I don’t own enough of them, and sometimes hauling in a ladder stand is impossible (example: hunting far from a road on public land).

For the vast majority of my treestand hunting, I’m 12-17 feet off the ground. I own a few different styles of climbing sticks, and depending on their length, it means I typically haul four sticks into the forest. This deer season, however, I’m hoping to lighten my load by trading one climbing stick for a lightweight, homemade aider.

An aider is simply a rope, strap or wire device that takes the place of a climbing stick. It attaches to the bottom of climbing stick, and you slip the toe of your boot into the aider’s loop much as you would a saddle stirrup when riding a horse.

Some brave bowhunters will use multiple aiders on their way up a tree, but I think it’s safer/wiser to use one for a first step only (see video below). You can purchase aiders from outdoor manufacturers, but this is one item that’s easy and inexpensive to make, too.

With use of a 2-foot-long aider, I should be able to climb 12-14 feet with three climbing sticks, and 15-17 feet with four climbing sticks. Sure, I know some bowhunters can get quite a bit higher with similar gear, but I like to play it safe and place my climbing sticks fairly close together.

The video below is from Jason Samkowiak, host of the Traditional Bowhunting and Wilderness Podcast and YouTube channel. I wrote about Jason and featured another one of this videos is this recent article on sharpening knives and broadheads. 

FYI: The PEX pipe Jason mentions isn’t linked in the information section below his video. PEX is used as an alternative to copper pipe for plumbing, and you can find it at any Home Depot or similar home improvement retailer.


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