By Joel Plaisted
Most white-tailed deer hunters have hunted from a treestand or elevated blind at some point in their careers.
If we are hunting safely, we use a strong rope to pull up our bow, firearms and backpacks. There's nothing I hate more than fumbling in the cold and dark, trying to tie items to my rope or, worse, trying to hook items to the tiny plastic clips that come with most hoist ropes. What a pain!
A while back, I started replacing those plastic clips with large carabiner clips, the kind used by hikers, backpackers and, often, for key chains.
These have proved to be much easier to use than the plastic clips, and are faster than tying items to my rope. They are also safer and sturdier than the plastic clips.
I like to be able to open the carabiner clip without having to remove my gloves. This saves valuable time in getting into my stand.
Carabiners are also handy when used on a backpack to clip water bottles, grunt calls and other items to your pack as you hike to your stand.
They are usually really cheap and you can pick up a pack at most sporting goods or camping supply stores for next to nothing.
Editor's Note: I am a big fan of the carabiner as well, but customize the ones I clip to my backpack. Carabiners are metal, and metal is a no-no on the exterior of a backpack because of the potential clink if it makes contact with a treestand. I simply make a duct tape wrap on the carabiner, creating a cushion. It works great!