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New Safety Harnesses

New Safety Harnesses

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My first experience with a safety harness was not a “Harness” at all but a black nylon strap that I wrapped around my waist and attached to the tree.  During my younger days, I didn’t give much thought to this method of “security” in the treestand.  I simply thought that since I had something on, I was good to go.  Thankfully I never had to test that theory out but have since learned a great deal more about treestand safety and the risks that are involved without a good harness…..yeah, that’s right, a real HARNESS, not just a strap! 

 

This season, we tried out 3 new Safety Harnesses.  The Rescue One CDS Harness from Mountaineer Sports and 2 new harnesses from TrophyLine USA (The Extreme Vest and the Armourlite Harness).  Here’s a look at these harnesses and what they have to offer:

 

The Rescue One CDS: 

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The “CDS” stands for “Controlled Descent System” and it’s the only harness that we know of that can lower you safely to the ground in the case of a tree-stand mishap.   This harness is very light and is constructed of high quality materials to ensure strength and comfort.  The specs on the Rescue One are as follows:

  • Easy to use Descent System allows safe, controlled descent to ground from up to 30 feet.
  • Super strong, lightweight Harness System with Legs, Waist and Chest Straps is easy to put on, easy to adjust. Weighs 6 pounds.
  • Low profile, metal dual lock safety buckles on leg straps, flat buckles for waist and chest straps.
  • Comfortable, breathable nylon webbing/straps.
  • Easily repacked for reuse.
  • Easily installs on any tree.
  • The unique ‘CDS’ Rack is made from high strength aluminum alloy with a 40,000 pound tensile strength rating. It ensures a safe stop if you fall and then a safe descent if needed.
  • State-of-the-art, water resistant, dynamic shock absorbing line lessens shock should a fall occur producing less shock force to the body than standard Harness Systems.
  • Line will not tangle on deployment.
  • Retains user in upright position after a fall.
  • Includes a Treestand Anchor Strap and Carabineer which is used to attach the Harness Tether Line Loop to the tree.
  • Includes a Lineman’s Safety Rope with Prussic Knot and two Carabineers. The Safety Rope is to be placed around the tree and attached to each Lineman’s Loop of the harness for stability when climbing up or down a tree and when putting up or taking down your stand.
  • A Reserve Suspension Relief Strap (RSRS) is built in to provide the user a foot loop in which to stand up in to relieve the pressure on the inside of the legs for improved blood circulation. Unlike other harness systems that must be retrieved from a compartment in the harness and then attached, running the risk of dropping it, our Reserve Suspension Relief Strap is already attached. Dropping the RSRS during an emergency could prove fatal in others, our system eliminates this possibility. May also be used as a deer drag.
  • Comes with an Interchangeable Back Cover in Realtree AP HD, Mossy Oak Treestand, ASAT camo or Blaze Orange. Separate Interchangeable Back Covers let you go from your favorite camo for bow season to blaze orange for firearm season.
  • Sizing:Standard size fits Most M/L/XL                                                                          
  • MAXIMUM WEIGHT: 300 lbs.

Colors Available include: ASAT, Realtree AP, Mossy Oak, and Blaze Orange

Check it out at www.mountaineer-sports.com

 

Our Thoughts on This Harness: We were surprised as to how light this harness was.  Everything worked flawlessly during our testing / hunts with this harness and the instructions for “recoil” of the descent rope was easy to follow as well.  Our only issue with this harness was the excess bulk that the coiled descent rope creates on the back of the harness.  We weren’t able to lean flush against many of the trees we had stands in but after a few hunts, we got used to it.  Honestly, this probably helped our posture! It’s really a give and take situation.  You’ll get the ability to lower yourself to the ground with this harness but it may cause you an inability to sit with your back flush against the tree.  At $149.99, this vest falls in the average range of high quality safety harnesses and is the only harness on the market to give you the descent feature.  Ask your local sporting goods retailer about the Rescue One CDS.

 

TrophyLine USA:

This year, TrophyLine came out with 2 new styles of safety harnesses based on your preference.  TrophyLine brought us the Tree Saddle and is now entering the safety harness market.  The vest style is called the Gadget Extreme that offers, as the name suggests, an unbelievable amount of opportunities to connect and store your hunting gadgets.  The other style is more of a traditional harness called the ArmourLite.  Both of these style harnesses feature a “seat” type support to take the stress off of your groin area in the case of a fall.  They also offer a “Decelerator Pack” to cushion your fall should you experience one.  Here are the specs on each of these harnesses:

The Gadget Extreme Vest:

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PRODUCT DESCRIPTION:
Body Armourâ„¢ – Gadget Extremeâ„¢ This Superior Functional version of Body Armourâ„¢ works great for colder climates.

Sizes: M – 90 to 150 lbs  |  L/XL – 150 to 300 lbs

FEATURES:

• REALTREE® APG
• Gadget Retractor with clip, built into the shoulder:

-         Keeps your range finder or grunt call at your fingertips, so it’s there when you need it.
– Keeps items safely out of the way while shooting.

• 2 Gadget Gear Bands:

-         With rubberized grip, these gear bands quietly stretch around and hold call cans, cell phones, or other items in place.

• 9 Gadget Pockets:

-         2 Fleece hand warmer pockets
2 Standard pockets on the bottom front edges
2 Ergonomically designed pockets for cross access allowing minimal movement. These pockets are especially deep (to the bottom of the vest) and are tricked out with gear loops inside for ammo, calls, etc.
2 Inner roomy pockets allow QUIET access to the full length of the vest front
1 Deep, gusseted pocket on the back of the vest used for storage. It‘s a great location to place an optional hydration bladder, for long duration hunting

• 2 Bowstring rests used in conjunction with a removable Bow Cam Cradle
• Zero dB Ultra-Quiet Fabrics and Construction:

- Eliminates noise for quiet movement
– Creates a Body Conforming Streamline fit

• Shoulder, waist, and leg straps combined with Suspension Relief Seat:

-         Designed with cushioned neoprene for added comfort.

-         The Suspension Relief Seat (S.R.S.) is built right into the harness. After falling, you’ll have the SRS already positioned. Just let out some tension in the leg straps and you’re sitting more comfortably on the SRS. This minimizes the risk of suspension trauma caused by pressure on your femoral artery, an inherent danger of conventional harnesses.

• Decelerator Pack:

-         Allows for a controlled stop during a fall.

-         The Decelerator Pack which softens the fall (if you should have one), causing you to hit bottom with almost half the force as you would with other harnesses.

Reusable Mesh Bag containing: 

1 Safety DVD
1 Removable Bow Cam Cradle
1 Tree Belt 1 Instruction Sheet

Safety Assist Strap (OPTIONAL ITEM available for purchase)
7’ long Climbing Belt – It is highly recommended to add this option to stay secure as you ascend and descend. The climbing belt may be used for added suspension relief, giving you another option in the event of a fall.

 The ArmourLite Harness:

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This lightweight version of Body Armourâ„¢ is great for warm climates or under jackets. This style harness is basically the same as the Extreme Vest except without the pockets!

Sizes: M – 90 to 150 lbs  |  L/XL – 150 to 300 lbs

FEATURES:

• REALTREE® APG
• Gadget Retractor with clip, built into the shoulder:

-         Keeps your range finder or grunt call at your fingertips, so it’s there when you need it.
– Keeps items safely out of the way while shooting.

• AirFlow Cushion Mesh Inside:                                                                                     - Allows air to flow between the harness and your body.

• Realtree APG Water Resistant Fabric Shell
• Adjustable Elastic Chest Strap
• Zero dB Ultra-Quiet Fabrics and Construction:                                                               - Eliminates noise for quiet movement

• Shoulder, waist, and leg straps combined with Suspension Relief Seat:

-         Designed with cushioned neoprene for added comfort.

-         The Suspension Relief Seat (S.R.S.) is built right into the harness. After falling, you’ll have the SRS already positioned. Just let out some tension in the leg straps and you’re sitting more comfortably on the SRS. This minimizes the risk of suspension trauma caused by pressure on your femoral artery, an inherent danger of conventional harnesses.

• Decelerator Pack:

-         Allows for a controlled stop during a fall.

-         The Decelerator Pack which softens the fall (if you should have one), causing you to hit bottom with almost half the force as you would with other harnesses.

Reusable Mesh Bag  containing:                                                                                                

1 Safety DVD
1 Removable Bow Cam Cradle
1 Tree Belt 1 Instruction Sheet

Safety Assist Strap (OPTIONAL ITEM available for purchase)
7’ long Climbing Belt – It is highly recommended to add this option to stay secure as you ascend and descend. The climbing belt may be used for added suspension relief, giving you another option in the event of a fall.

Our Thoughts on these two harnesses: We like the fact that TrophyLine offers two styles depending on your preference for a vest style or a lighter type harness.  These are a little more “involved”, shall we say, meaning that there’s a lot going on with these harnesses.  Cords, pockets, hooks, straps, you name it, these harnesses have it!  The length of the leg straps are plenty long.  TrophyLine provides a little Velcro strap to coil the excess length of the leg straps but we still thought that this much strap material was a tad unnecessary.  Overall, these harnesses are extremely well thought out and made of high quality material.  At $169.99 and $119.99 respectively, the Gadget Extreme Vest and ArmourLite Harness also fall into the average price range for high quality safety harnesses.  They’re worth a look at your local sporting goods store!

Check them out at www.trophylineusa.com

 

 

One of our requirements for harnesses is that they be easy to put on and not get tangled up.  All of these safety harnesses met that requirement and then some and the quality of construction was second to none on all these models.  

 

Safety Harnesses have come a long way since the days of the simple nylon strap.  You owe it to yourself to check out the various styles of harnesses offered on the market today and decide on one for use each time you climb into your stand. 

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