This Aero Hunter review covers the benefits of the Aero Hunter vs conventional treestands. I made the switch and I haven’t looked back. I’ve spent countless hours in saddles while deer hunting, this post will cover everything you need to know to determine if the Aero Hunter tree saddle by New Tribe is the right saddle for you.
UPDATE: I created this post in 2018 when this was the only saddle available on the market. The saddle market has exploded since then and significant improvements to saddles have taken place, especially in regards to comfort. I would not recommend this saddle anymore. Instead, check out some of the newer saddles on the market that I have reviewed:
The other 4 saddles I reviewed included:
Aero Hunter Saddle System Breakdown
The Aero Hunter saddle is made with high strength fabric and rope with two carabiners. The Aero Hunter package consists of a tree rope that goes around your tree of choice, a bridge rope that attaches to this tree rope, a lineman’s belt, and of course the saddle itself (see picture below). I have the older model of the Aero Hunter which is very similar to the new model, however, mine did not come with the back band.
How To Climb & Setup With The Aero Hunter Saddle
Aero Hunter Review | Why The Aero Hunter Is A Must
If you are a serious big buck hunter the Aero Hunter is a must to have in your arsenal, here are 11 reasons why:
You Can Climb Imperfect Trees
With this system, I am able to get around trees that are full of branches without ever having to completely detach myself from the tree. This allows me to climb ugly trees full of branches during run and gun setups that are in the right spot, rather than having to settle for another tree further from where the action is. Also, I can hunt trees that are leaning. With a higher selection of trees available I have been able to put myself in better positions making my hunts more successful.
You Can Climb Trees Of Almost Any Size
The Aero Hunter allows me to climb trees of any size that will support my weight. I have found this to be important in swamps where vegetation is stunted. The ability to hunt smaller trees gives me the ability to hunt where other hunters cannot. I can also hunt trees as large as the linesman and tree rope will reach. I shot my 2017 buck in a white pine that was around 30” in diameter. If you need to hunt larger trees you can purchase your own ropes to meet your needs, but the standard Aero Hunter ropes have been more than enough for all the trees I’ve hunted in.
The Aero Hunter Is Much More Cost-Effective
Once you buy the Aero Hunter you will not have to buy another treestand making it very cost-effective. It replaces the reason for buying multiple permanent ladder or hang-on stands which adds up quickly. This is how I think about cost-effectiveness: One Aero Hunter = infinite treestands. Five hang-on or ladder stands = five treestands.
You Can Have Multiple Stands
I have personally noticed and most successful big buck killers agree that hunting the same treestand repeatedly will quickly burn out spots and that the first couple sits are the most effective. This makes permanent ladder and hang-on stands easy to over-hunt and for big bucks to pattern you. I recommend only hunting stands when conditions are perfect for that particular treestand. This will increase success of particular treestands by keeping them fresh. Hunting only when conditions are perfect, however, greatly reduces the time you are able to hunt.
If you’re like me you’re going to hunt every chance you get one way or another, so being restricted like this was not going to cut it for me. I needed a better option. To increase my success I needed to be able to spread out my hunting pressure within multiple high-odd locations and hunt them when conditions were right in order to keep my stands fresh.
With the Aero Hunter I am able to hunt any location because the saddle comes home with me after every hunt. It is simple and easy to set-up so I can avoid hunting the same trees over and over keeping them fresh, making each hunt essentially the “first sit”, keeping big bucks from patterning me.
Maneuverability Is Unmatched
My Ameristep Tree Step platform placed around the diameter of the tree enables me to shoot a full 360º around the tree as well as directly underneath. Big bucks often don’t come in where you expect. Other treestands don’t offer this type of maneuverability, being able to maneuver like this puts me in control so I can take a good shots when they are presented. I can also change my vertical height slightly if I need to shoot just above or below a branch. By fully extending my legs from my platform it raises my elevation a few inches. Scrunching up close to the tree lowers my elevation.
The Aero Hunter is Quiet
There is very little metal on the Aero Hunter, everything else is rope and fabric. The carabiners are the largest pieces of metal. Some small strap adjusters are made of metal as well. Out of the box the saddle is pretty quiet, much quieter than conventional treestands that are made entirely of metal. To make my saddle silent I added some tape to all of the metal pieces and that did the trick. I feel much more confident in my approach when setting up in bedding areas with the Aero Hunter.
The Aero Hunter is Very Mobile
It only weighs 5 lbs 5oz making it incredibility lightweight. Additionally, it is fabric so it can easily be rolled up into a small bag and placed into a backpack. It can also be worn to the treestand which is what I prefer, I drape the ropes over my shoulders when walking to my stand making transportation simple and noise free.
It’s Easy To Conceal
Another great benefit of this system is it enables me to use the tree I’m in to my advantage. If animals are coming from a certain direction I can move to the opposite side of the tree to stay hidden. Since you are facing the tree you can straddle yourself right up tight against the tree. Another perk is that since you do not have to cut limbs down to get to where you want to hunt on a tree you can leave some natural cover to blend in better.
Is The Aero Hunter Comfortable?
The Aero Hunter is quite comfortable. Even when in awkward leaning trees the saddle remains fairly comfortable. Adjustable straps located on the back and leg portions of the saddle allow for customized pressure point relief. My Aero Hunter did not come with a back band as I mentioned previously, however, I created my own by using a neoprene firearm sling.
The back band is fantastic for long sits in the tree as your back does tend to get tired over time without one. I have sat in the stand for around 12 hours a couple of times and I do start to ache, but I am able to extend my legs, stretch, maneuver, and change position to lessen the burden. Sitting anywhere for 12 hours would make anyone squirm. I have not been able to sit as long in other conventional treestands.
Can The Aero Hunter Be Stolen?
Theft can be a problem on public lands, and even on private land! The piece of mind of being able to bring the Aero Hunter home at the end of the day is huge for me. There’s nothing worse than getting excited about going hunting only to find your stand missing. Or going to check game cameras with months of data on them to find them stolen. With the Aero Hunter this is not a problem. Additionally, not having a bulky ladder or hang-on stand permanently placed on a tree prevents treestand locations from being discovered by other hunters.
Is The Aero Hunter Safe?
In my opinion the Aero Hunter is just as safe, if not more safe than traditional treestands. It has been designed specifically for fall prevention and is rated for 5000 lbs.
When used properly you are harnessed to the tree throughout the entire climb. When ascending the tree you are harnessed in with the lineman’s belt. Once you get to the height at which you will be hunting you’ll need to also use the lineman’s belt to place the tree rope. The lineman’s belt allows for a quick, painless and safe installation of the tree rope. Once the tree rope is secure to the tree you can attach yourself to it via carbineer. Once attached, the lineman’s belt can be removed. To descend the tree reverse the process. It is quite simple.
If you encounter tree limbs that your lineman’s belt cannot get around you can set up the tree saddle as you would to hunt, as I just mentioned, then remove your lineman’s belt and re-attach the belt above the limb and carry on your way up the tree, thus being attached to the tree 100% of the time. A second lineman’s belt could also be added to climb branched trees even quicker.
I’ve often found myself getting lazy and not wearing, or forgetting to bring a safety harness when using conventional ladder and hang on stands. The Aero Hunter does not give you a choice. To climb the tree fast and effectively you must be harnessed in at all times.
Aero Hunter Considerations
The Aero Hunter is a fantastic system but there are some things to consider before you purchase:
I have never done any videotaping while hunting, but it is something I am definitely considering in the near future. I am not sure how difficult videotaping would be but I imagine the footage would be a little shaky while being semi-suspended from the tree.
A person’s size may also affect their ability to stay in a Aero Hunter for long periods of time. I am a skinny dude 6’4 and 155lbs and it works great for me. Larger hunters may find it causes more strain at pressure points.
It takes a little bit of practice to use the Aero Hunter. For me it felt a little awkward at first with the bridge rope getting in the way of pulling my bow back. Switching sides of the tree to shoot can be difficult because you have to get a bow, with a knocked arrow around the bridge. Target practicing in different scenarios while in the Aero Hunter helped me figure out how to make shots count in the most awkward of situations. I highly recommend practicing tough scenarios.
4. Knee Pads.
Personally, I don’t use knee pads when hunting with the Aero Hunter, but many people do. For long sits I may start wearing them. The reason being is as your knees press against the trunk of the tree for long periods of time they get sore, especially if the bark is ridged. Also, over time, I could see the bark wearing holes in the cloth of your pants at the knees, knee pads would be a good solution for this. I alternate between straddling the tree trunk and using my knees in order to keep my knees from getting too sore.
Out of the box the fabric and rope have a chemical-like, factory-processed type smell. It is not a bad smell, but to a whitetail it is strong and not natural. I spent a lot of time trying to get rid of the smell of the Aero Hunter system with little luck during the first year of use. I tried soaking everything in warm water and baking soda, I also let it soak in scent killer laundry detergent which helps a little, but not much.
What I observed was the excess coloring of the fabric would come off in the water a little bit after every wash. This was evidenced by the dark tint of the water post-wash. I believe the smell is related to the coloring used because after each wash the smell reduced ever so slightly every time. Each time I washed the saddle less color would come off.
It took about a year for the scent to reduce to a point where I could not notice it. After washing a dozen times of so, letting it dry/air out outside for weeks, and practicing and hunting with it in the elements the scent has finally dissipated enough so that I don’t notice it anymore. I still wash and soak the system in scent killer laundry detergent before each season, and sometimes during the season.
How Much Does The Aero Hunter Cost?
As of this review, the Aero Hunter Kit costs $259.00 for just the saddle, for $372.00 an entire kit (at the time of this post, please see website for more information) but like I mentioned it replaces the need for purchasing multiple hang-ons and ladder stands in order to hunt different locations which adds up quickly. With the Aero Hunter you can hunt anywhere at anytime! Platform prices range because there are so many of them out there. The Ameristep Tree Steps that I use are around 2$ apiece, and I rarely use more than 5. So for 10$ you can have a more than ideal platform.
Aero Hunter Review Conclusions
I hope you gained some helpful insights from this Aero Hunter review. In my experience, the Aero Hunter system is one of the safest, most lightweight, and versatile option on the market. You can find them here: Aero Hunter By New Tribe
You might also like this tree saddle review: JX3 Hybrid Saddle Review | Best Tree Saddle For Hunting On The Market?
If you liked this Aero Hunter review you may like my post: Tree Saddle Hunting – Complete Guide | Should You Make The Switch? For further tree saddle hunting information.