The best-value lightweight ladder stand for bow hunting is the Rivers Edge RE647 Deluxe One-Man Ladder Stand.
It weighs more than 40 lbs less than the winner of our Best Ladder Tree Stand! It is the joint lightest ladder stand we reviewed but it had significantly more functionality.
We have to say, right up front, that ladder tree stands are not the most portable equipment out there. Nonetheless, some definitely can be used in various locations.
We chose winners in several categories as we all have different needs and we want you to find the lightweight ladder stand that’s best for you.
Our winners were:
- Best overall: Rivers Edge RE647 Deluxe 1-Man Ladder Stand
- Lightest: Guide Gear Climbing Ladder Tree Stand with Mesh Seat
- Best value for money: Guide Gear 16′ Ladder Tree Stand for Hunting
- Most comfortable: Big Game Warrior DXT 1-Person Tree Stand
- Most durable: Guide Gear 15.5 Climbing Ladder Tree Stand with Mesh Seat
- Best one-man stand: Rhino Treestands RTL-200 Deluxe Single Person 16ft Ladder Stand
- Best two-man stand: Rivers Edge RE649 2-Man Ladder Stand 18′
Other recommended stands:
- Big Game Guardian XLT 2-Person Ladder
- Guide Gear 18`’ Ladder Tree Stand for Archery
- Muddy Sky Rise Ultra-Wide Single Ladder Stand
Who This Guide Is For
This guide is for anyone who enjoys hunting from a tree stand. Or who wants to experience hunting from a tree stand for the first time. Whether you’re a seasoned hunter or a beginner, this guide will provide you with valuable insights into the lightest ladder tree stands available on the market.
Hunting from on high is a different experience from hunting on the ground. You can see more of what’s around you. You’re less likely to miss the deer if they’re hidden in the foliage. It’s not as simple as just climbing a tree though. You need the right equipment.
If you’re looking to improve your hunting experience, then this guide is for you.
If you’d like to compare with other tree stands, check out these articles:
- Sharpshaft Content: best hang on/lock-on tree stand on the market
- Sharpshaft Content: best climbing tree stand on the market
- Sharpshaft Content: lightest hang-on tree stand on the market (8.5 lbs)
- Sharpshaft Content: lightest climbing tree stands on the market (11 lbs)
Why Trust Us?
We have spent countless hours researching and testing some of the lightest ladder tree stands on the market.
We’ve taken into account various factors such as weight, durability, and ease of use to provide you with an unbiased and comprehensive guide to what tree stands are out there.
We’re sure that one of them will be just what you need to complete your hunting experience. Helping our readers make the right decision when buying hunting equipment is our reason for being here.
There are various factors you need to take into account when buying a lightweight ladder treestand:
Size and height: some ladder tree stands are bigger than others.
- Where are you going to want to use it? That really makes a difference.
- How high do you want to be? All the ladder tree stands here are high enough for happy hunting, but there is a difference between an 18-foot stand and a 15-foot stand. Those extra few feet will definitely give you a better vantage point. It all depends what you’re looking for.
Noise: the way ladder tree stands are built means they can make some noise. You don’t want that. Remember deer have good ears!
- Look for a ladder tree stand that doesn’t make too much noise when you’re climbing it. A ladder that’s noisy might also be an indicator of quality or stability issues.
- When you’re sitting at the top of the stand, is it going to be as near to silent as possible? This is really important. If you’ve been sat still for an hour, you might need to move just to keep the blood flowing. You don’t want to do that and have the stand let every animal in the vicinity know that your legs were getting a bit stiff!
- Is it going to stay silent when you get your shot off? Obviously, the last thing you want is to scare off that deer that you’ve been patiently waiting for just when the moment of truth finally arrives.
Mobility: how easy is it going to be to get the ladder stand to the tree?
- If the tree is not reachable in your vehicle, you might have to carry the tree stand the last part of the way. That means, the lighter the better.
- Will you need to assemble at the tree itself or before you get there? This is an important consideration. If you’re going to be able to assemble the stand right where you’re going to place it, then all well and good. If, however, you’re going to need to put it together elsewhere, life will obviously be easier if the stand is lighter.
Portability: how easy is it moving your ladder stand from tree to tree?
- Our recommendation is you choose a tree where you’ll want your ladder to stay. Tree stand can be carried around but they’re not really designed to be truly portable.
- You can move a ladder tree stand from one tree to another nearby, but most can’t be packed up and taken home (easily) at the end of the day. They are not really designed to be taken apart once assembled. It’s not uncommon for it to take more than an hour to put a stand together. The longer you can leave your stand in one place, the better.
- The problem with moving ladder tree stands about is as much down to shape as it is to weight. One person can carry a 50-lb weight without much difficulty but it’s nowhere near as easy for one person to carry a stand that’s 18-feet long and also top heavy.
Weight: as we’ll see, tree stands can vary greatly in weight.
- The stands we’ve reviewed here are all very much on the lighter side of the scale.
- This is largely down to the materials used to make them. The heavier stands are possibly made of higher-quality and heavier metals.. That doesn’t mean the stands here aren’t durable. We’re convinced they are.
- Lighter stands are generally cheaper. That’s a definite plus point.
- You need to think about your particular use case and your budget and decide accordingly. Are you looking for a one-man stand or a two-man stand? How much weight does it need to support? A heavier individual might be better off with a two-person stand.
- How lightweight is lightweight? The stands we’ve selected here weigh between 44 and 64 lbs. In comparison with many of the stands out there on the market, that’s definitely lightweight. There are stands that weigh more than double some of the stands here.
How we reviewed the lightest ladder tree stands
We’ve tested and reviewed various ladder tree stands based on their weight, durability, and ease of use. Where we’ve not had the opportunity to test the ladder tree stand ourselves, we’ve also taken into account customer reviews and feedback to provide you with a well-rounded review.
When we reviewed the stands below, we took into account the ideas above in our purchasing advice. This means we considered all the important features that can make a tree stand great. We also broke down which treestand was best in various categories.
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Best Lightweight Ladder Treestands in 2023
Best overall: Rivers Edge RE647 Deluxe 1-Man Ladder Stand
Weighing just 44lbs, the Rivers Edge RE647 was a clear winner. It’s the joint-lightest stand here. The other 44-pounder is also a great stand but it’s much more barebones than the RE647. That’s what makes the RE647 the clear winner of this lightest ladder tree stand round-up.
With countless treestands available in the market, it can be a challenge to find the right match for your hunting needs and budget. However, the Rivers Edge RE647 Deluxe 1-Man Ladder Stand provides a versatile and affordable option that combines exceptional functionality and quality and we’re happy to recommend it to any solo hunters out there. For us, it was a pleasure to use.
In our experience one of the strong points of Rivers Edge stands is Rivers Edge are a great company when it comes to getting spare parts. That’s something we really love to hear as it means you can be assured of a long lifespan for your ladder stand.
The RE647’s 16’5″ height provides plenty of elevation to let you really see what’s going on around you. It stands out for comfort too. The generously padded seat will keep your tush happy during long sits. The flip-out footrest is great. Spend a few hours in a tree stand with a footrest and then a few in one without and you’ll know how important they are.
In conclusion, the Rivers Edge RE647 Deluxe 1-Man Ladder Stand is an excellent choice for hunters seeking a comfortable and durable one-man tree stand. Its steel construction makes it stable and sturdy and we’re confident that it’ll last for years.. Coupled with the reasonable price point, this ladder stand provides hunters with the ideal blend of comfort, practicality, and durability.
- Extremely lightweight
- Seems durable and easy to get spare parts
- Very comfortable to a one-man stand
- Flip-out footrest
- Very reasonably priced
- 300-lb weight limit
- Nothing that we can think of
The Guide Gear Climbing Ladder Tree Stand with Mesh Seat has to be about as light as it’s technically possible for a ladder tree stand to get and still be strong, sturdy and stable. This little beauty weighs a mere 44 pounds. That’s the same weight as our overall winner. So, if having one of the absolute lightest ladder tree stands out there is what matters then look no further.
Engineered to elevate you securely above game animals, the 15’ height ladder is an excellent tool for novice and young hunters. The Guide Gear tree ladder is crafted from extra-strong, durable steel and boasts a generous weight capacity of 300 lbs. Designed to last, it features a powder-coated steel frame that delivers impressive resistance to weather and corrosion.
But this doesn’t mean you need to compromise on comfort. The tree ladder and hunting seat showcase a breathable mesh fabric that will keep you comfortable during all-day hunts, ensuring you stay focused and ready for your next big catch.
At this weight, it’s understandably a stand built for just one person.
It might not have all the bells and whistles, but it has everything you need to get the job done. When you factor the price in, you know that you’ve got an excellent value stand here. With the Guide Gear Climbing Ladder Tree Stand, hunting is transformed into an enjoyable and comfortable outdoor experience.
- As light as they come
- Strong, stable, and sturdy
- Built to last
- Comfortable seat
- 300-lb weight limit
- Basic no-frills design
Best value for money: Guide Gear 16′ Ladder Tree Stand for Hunting
The Guide Gear 16′ Ladder Tree Stand is a useful and low-cost tree stand made for hunters who want to see their quarry from high up. Its 16-foot height means hunters have a good view. able. It works well for many hunting situations and is a low-cost choice for hunters who need to save money. The price is fantastic.
Obviously, a cheaper price sometimes means less attention to quality. Some reviewers found this Guide Gear tree stand difficult to assemble. They believed this was down to manufacturing problems. We didn’t have these problems ourselves, but it’s worth bearing in mind.
A lower price can also mean less of these little extras that make a great tree stand. This stand doesn’t have a flip-up shooting rail or seat. It does, however, have a flip-up footrest, which is something that we liked. It’s especially useful for those of you with long legs.
Overall though, the Guide Gear 16′ Ladder Tree Stand for Hunting is a good choice for hunters who want an affordable and useful tree stand. For its price, it offers excellent comfort and all the essentials you need.
- 16-foot height for a good view
- Comfortable climbing seat for a fun hunting time
- Works well for different hunting situations
- Low-cost choice for hunters on a budget
- Easy to put up and carry
- 300-lb weight limit
- Durability could be an issue
- Some reviewers had problems with assembly
Most comfortable: Big Game Warrior DXT Ladder Tree Stand Review
The Big Game Warrior DXT Ladder Tree Stand is a stable and comfortable tree stand made for those of you who like to hunt alone. This 17-foot tall ladder stand has a Flex-Tek seat, which makes it comfy to sit in for a long time while waiting for your prey.
As well as comfort, safety was clearly a priority too when designing this tree stand. We always felt perfectly safe when sitting in this tree stand.
What makes the DXT Ladder Tree Stand really stand out is its weight. At less than 50 lbs, it’s easy to move around if you need to. It’s impressive that such a lightweight stand should feel so sturdy. Especially at such a reasonable price. Prices can, of course, change, but at the time of review, this was the cheapest tree stand here.
Paying less means that you don’t get advantages like a flip-up seat and shooting rail, but there were no problems with noise. So, you’ll be able to wait unheard by any approaching deer.
In the end, the Big Game Warrior DXT Ladder Tree Stand is a good choice for hunters who want a comfy and high-up hunting experience. The focus on safety and comfort, along with the incredibly lightweight design, makes it a good option for different hunting situations. And it’s also fantastic value for money.
- 17-foot height for a high view
- Flex-Tek seat for extra comfort during long waits
- Made for one hunter
- Focus on safety and comfort
- Excellent price
- 300-lb weight limit
- Some reviewers find it tricky to put together
- Only good for one person
The Guide Gear 15.5 with Mesh Seat might not be the lightest ladder tree stand here, but this gem from Guide Gear is still very much on the light side when it comes to ladder tree stands in general. That’s partly down to the fact that its 15.5’ height means there’s not as much of it as a 20’ tree stand, but it’s still plenty high enough. You will definitely be high enough to get a great view of any approaching deer.
This stand is proof that being lightweight and solidly built are not mutually exclusive. In fact, the Guide Gear 15.5’ Climbing Ladder Tree Stand really stands out for its sense of solidity. Its sturdy steel construction means that it’s notable for how quiet it is. That’s a great thing. No one wants to scare off their prey because the ladder stand squeaks loudly just as you’re about to get your shot off!
The solid and sturdy build also makes us feel confident that this ladder tree stand will stand (get it?!) the test of time. We’ve only just had it in for testing but we’re sure durability won’t be a concern here. We’re very happy to make it the winner in our most durable ladder tree stand category.
Another highlight is the mesh seat, which ensures comfort won’t be a concern. In fact, we found that we could sit in the seat for hours at a stretch and still be comfortable. The back rest helped a lot too.
One slight concern was that getting the shooting rail down once in the seat wasn’t easy. We even think it might be a problem for taller hunters. The reviews we’ve read back that up. Some of the bigger guys out there said it was a problem getting the rail down, which could be a problem for safety. It’s also something to think about if you like to use the shooting rail to keep your aim steady. We know some bow hunters prefer to keep the rail up anyway, but it’s definitely something to bear in mind.
- Built to last for years
- Sturdy steel construction
- Mesh seat and back rest are comfortable
- 300-lb capacity
- The shooting rail might cause problems for taller hunters
- Not the highest tree stand
Best one-man stand: Rhino Treestands RTL-200 Deluxe Single Person 16ft Ladder Stand
The Rhino Treestands RTL-200 stood out for a number of reasons. Like all but one of the stands here, it’s a single-seat tree stand made for hunters who like to hunt alone.
Comfort was definitely important when this stand was being designed. The padded armrests and shooting rail are a real treat. The comfortable mesh seat means you’ll be able to happily spend hours sitting in this ladder stand. The “Deluxe” in the name certainly doesn’t disappoint. We certainly enjoyed every moment of our time testing this beauty.
Though not the absolute lightest stand here, it still only weighs 55 lbs, which is much less than other stands out there that have a similar feature set.
Durability shouldn’t be a problem as the stand is made from reassuringly solid-feeling coated steel. The Rhino’s 300lb capacity means that most hunters should have no problem using it.
In the end, the Rhino Treestands RTL-200 Deluxe Single Person 16ft Ladder Stand is an excellent choice for solo hunters, giving them comfort and usefulness in a strong and durable design.
- 16-foot height helps you see better
- Made for one person for a focused hunting time
- Comfy mesh seat for waiting a long time
- Soft armrests for extra comfort
- Shooting rail for extra help and steadiness
- 300-lb weight limit
- Can only be used for solo hunting
Best two-man stand: Rivers Edge RE649 2-Man Ladder Stand 18′
The Rivers Edge RE649 2-Man Ladder Stand 18′ 2-Man, Black is a strong and comfortable tree stand made for two people. Its comfort means enjoyable shared hunting time. Its 18-foot height means it provides an excellent vantage point.
Its large platform makes it more than sufficient for two people to use it without getting in each other’s way. In fact, there’s plenty of room for your equipment too.
Two harnesses are included so there’s no need to worry about safety when two people are using the stand.
In general, reviewers were very happy with the stand’s value for money. It might not have topped out any particular category, but it was a great all-rounder at an excellent price.
Comfort is an area where the RE649 shines too. Even after hours it remained a pleasure to sit in. One reviewer even described it as being like a “tree couch”!
What amazed us is that this stand has all this going for it yet only weighs 63lbs. It might be the heaviest stand on this list, but it’s also the only two-man stand here.
Overall, the Rivers Edge RE649 2-Man Ladder Stand 18′ 2-Man is a good choice for hunters who like to hunt together, giving them excellent comfort and usefulness in a strong and sturdy design.
- 18-foot height helps you see better
- Holds two people so you can hunt with a friend or have more room for gear
- Black color helps the stand not stand out
- Big platform for lots of space and easy moving
- 500-lb weight limit
- The seat does not flip up
Big Game Guardian XLT 2-Person Ladder
The XLT is surprisingly light for a 2-person stand. It’s also very reasonably priced. We’ve seen it as low as 150 dollars, which is brilliant for a 2-person stand. In our testing, it performed a treat and we found it easy to put together.
In terms of sturdiness, the BIG GAME Guardian XLT Tree Stand does not disappoint. Comfort was good too. The adjustable support bar makes it adaptable to hunters of various sizes too. You should be able to ensure you’re comfortable while taking aim.
It doesn’t win in any one category, but considering its value for money, this stand comes highly recommended. It’s great for anyone seeking a comfortable, affordable and functional tree stand for their hunting adventures.
Guide Gear 18′ Ladder Tree Stand for Archery
What makes the Guide Fear 18′ Tree Stand for Archery special tree stand special is that it’s specifically designed for archery. This makes it great for bow hunting too. It’s very much a barebones stand. The seat has no back and no sides so you’d have to make sure you’re secured firmly to the tree. There’s no support bar either. This obviously makes sense for archery but not so much for bow hunting.
Having said all that, it’s definitely worth considering. The fact that it’s a basic stand helps keep it light. Especially, when you take into account the solid build. One thing that stood out for us when testing this stand was its robustness. It’s definitely built to be stable and sturdy.
If you love archery as much as you love bow hunting, then we’d have to say that this is the stand for you. The price is great too. It can easily be found for less than 200 bucks. This one definitely hits the bullseye!
The Sky Rise Ultra-Wide does what it says on the tin. This is a lightweight stand that’s built for those of us who are a little wider in the rear. One thing that surprised it about it is that despite being wider than your average one-man stand, it still only supports the standard weight of 300 pounds.
Despite that, this one ticks all the boxes. It’s especially good when it comes to comfort. That extra space makes a difference whether you need it or not. You might even be able to fit two smaller hunters on this stand. Or maybe a big one and a little one!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about ladder tree stands:
What is a Ladder Stand?
A ladder stand is a type of tree stand that is designed to be set up against a tree. It consists of a ladder that leads up to a platform where the hunter or observer can stand or sit.
How to Set Up a Ladder Stand?
Setting up a ladder stand requires careful planning and preparation. You’ll need to select a suitable tree, assemble the ladder stand, and secure it to the tree. For a step-by-step guide on how to set up a ladder stand, please check out our detailed guide.
How High Do Ladder Stands Typically Go?
Ladder stands can typically go up to 20 feet high. However, the height may vary depending on the model and manufacturer. Any stand above 15 feet high should be enough to make sure you get some great views of any deer without the deer noticing you.
What Weight Capacity Should I Look for in a Two-Man Treestand?
When looking for a two-man treestand, you should look for a weight capacity of at least 500 pounds. This will ensure that the treestand can support the weight of two people comfortably.
In conclusion, the Rivers Edge RE647 is our pick of the lightweight tree stands that we reviewed. Its combination of comfort and stability in an exceptionally lightweight package made it an easy choice. We really enjoyed using it while hunting. We hope that this guide has provided you with valuable insights into the lightest ladder tree stands available on the market. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to us. Happy hunting!