With the archery deer hunting season opening in Wildlife Management Units 5C and 5D on Sept. 19, savvy bowhunters are scouting for deer, deer sign and erecting treestands on their favorite woodlots.
If you’re one of them, then you should take the Treestand Challenge prescribed by the non-profit, Tree Stand Safety Awareness (TSSA) who designated August as Tree Stand Awareness Month.
The following challenge is described by Marilyn Bentz, executive director of the National Bowhunting Education Foundation.
Says Bentz, as reported to The Archery Wire, “Hunters know that every year there are more incidents when hunting from an elevated position can cause everything from a scare to a broken bones or worse, death.”
She continues by saying that these high level hunting adventures end in tragedy. So by taking the challenge of common sense treestand usage and heeding the warning signs of danger, can greatly reduce the risks of hunting from an elevated position.
Bowhunters are asked to challenge themselves to these points when treestand hunting:
* Challenge yourself to always wear a Fall Arrest System (FAS) made to industry standards. Learn how to use it and all its components properly. Put it on before you leave your house or hunting cabin. Practice shooting with it on; wear it so much that you’ll feel naked without it.
* Challenge yourself to be a treestand snob. Only use stands manufactured to industry standards. Only these stands have passed rigorous testing by independent engineering labs. On a side note, I remember when Baker and Loc-On climbing treestands were all the rage because they were one of the first of their type on the market. And that was before there were any treestand standards. Low and behold, hunters fell from them due to in part to imperfections in construction and improper instruction and suits put them out of business because they could no longer afford the insurance premiums.
* Challenge yourself to inspect all treestands for signs of malfunction or wear prior to going afield and when moving the stand to a different location.
* Challenge yourself to actually read and follow the stand’s manufacturer’s directions and guidelines. Then practice with the treestand at ground level prior to going afield.
* Challenge yourself to always use a haul-up line to pull gear into your stand or it lower it prior to climbing down from the stand. Also, pull the gear up and lower it on the opposite side from your climbing device.
* Challenge yourself to always maintain three points of contact when climbing or descending.
* Challenge yourself to always use three people to set up or take down a single-person ladder style stand and five people when setting up or taking down a dual person stand.
* Challenge yourself to never use a treestand on trees with thick or loose bark that are dead. Never climb into a treestand when lightening or thunderstorms are present and if the stand has ice on it, is wet or you do not feel well.
* Challenge yourself to always hunt with a plan, plan for the hunt, and if you can, hunt with a buddy. In the event of a fall, be prepared to help yourself or to summon help.
* Challenge yourself to become a better hunter. After all, you can be up 25 feet or more in a tree and still get “made” by a buck.
“Taking on the challenge of being treestand savvy won’t just save your life. It will make a hunt more enjoyable and will challenge you to become a better hunter and woodsman,” says Bentz in her address to the outdoor press.
For more information go to www.bowhunter-ed.com or www.nbef.org.
FIRST ANNUAL BLUE DIAMOND SPORTING CLAYS
The Marines are looking for a few good shooters. That’s the motto of an effort to raise funds for educational scholarships and memorial programs benefitting Marines and U.S. Navy Corpsman and their families, the First Annual Blue Mountain Sporting Clays Championship is set to take place Sept. 27 at Lehigh Valley Sporting Clays in Coplay.
Registration for the event will begin at 1:00 p.m. for the 2:00 p.m. shoot.
According to Nick Warr, treasurer of 1/5 Vietnam Veterans Association, shooters can pre-register individually or in teams of five shooters. Each shooter will be given 100 targets, and will be able to participate in all the fun and games including mulligans and lucky targets.
Included in the registration fee of $150 per shooter or $625 per team, are trophies, prizes and a buffet dinner. Along with dinner shooters can participate in an auction of military collectibles. Shooters, says Warr, should provide their own gun, ammo and eye/ear protection.
“This sporting clays competition is a project of the 1/5 Vietnam Veterans Association with proceeds benefitting both the Sgt. Rodney M. Davis USMC (MOH) Memorial Scholarship Fund and the 1st Marine Division Association Scholarship Fund, which has helped over 700 young Americans to achieve their educational goals,” says Warr.
Members of the 1/5 Vietnam Veterans will act as event volunteers, hosts and sponsors.
To learn more and register online go to www.1-5vietnamveterans.org/2015/clays. Or call Warr at 828-696-2388.