By Kevin Reese
Texas –-(Ammoland.com)- Most of us have a favorite hunting spot whether on public or private ground; the one spot that speaks to our hearts, our instincts and our desire to commune with God’s great outdoors.
For me, that spot is quietly nestled miles down a dirt road in Freestone County, Texas.
While not necessarily a whitetail haven it is target rich as a result of our feral hog population. Occasional opportunities to take deer do arise but hog hunting is a year round activity in that little spot.
It’s small by most accounts but hunts well, especially with a bow. We have several stand locations in predictable places but, like so many of you, I've had to settle for lesser positions because of the sheer amount of trees crooked trees on the property!
Over the years I've found literally hundreds of perfect spots with perfectly imperfect trees! Some I hunt from blinds while others are routinely unhuntable from blinds because of flooding. Have you been there? How many times have you found the perfect spot of ground to setup on only to realize there isn't a straight tree in sight?
While a few treestand companies have offered solutions, only one seems to have dropped that problem in its tracks where comfort is an active ingredient.
What’s in the box?
Opening the box I found a 19-pound, 34-inch circular platform, a heavy-duty bracket and radius adjustment plate, a two-piece adjustable 3rd Link, two 1-inch ratchet straps, a seat, seatback and seat post, bag of fasteners, a safety harness, bow holder and manuals for both the stand and the harness.
Setup for success!
Whether your tree is as straight as an arrow or crooked as a question mark, setup is simple. Follow manual instructions to assemble the mounting bracket, 3rd Link and seat. Hang the mounting bracket on your favorite tree and tighten the ratchet straps. Rotate the radius adjustment plate so the platform receiving hooks are level and make sure the spring loaded pin locks the plate into position; the adjustment holes on the mounting bracket are spaced at 1/8-inch intervals for near-minute adjustments. After leveling, tighten the four bolts down to ensure the radius plate does not move or shift. Hang the platform on the receiving hooks and clip the locking pins into place to secure the platform to the mounting bracket. Attach one end of the 3rd Link to the mounting bracket and the other to the platform near the seat hub. Use both holes on the3rd Link to make half-inch leveling adjustments to the platform. Make sure the bracket and platform are level before installing the seat. Using the locking-pin and five adjustment holes on the seat post, spaced at 1-inch intervals, adjust the seat height for comfort. Use appropriate safety and harness systems to ascend, descend, hang, remove and hunt from this or any treestand!
Hunt hard… comfortably!
I found a number of attributes about this stand impressive. Beyond the obvious benefit of hanging a treestand on a crooked tree, comfort is at the top of my list and at the heart of Johnson Treestand’s product development. The 2-inch seat pad was incredibly comfortable and the added lumbar support allowed me to sit back and relax for a full day of hunting. The S-shaped seat post positioned me further back on the platform, creating much appreciated, increased floor space directly in front of me.
Johnson’s 360-degree difference!
The included bow holder keeps your bow conveniently by your side for minimal movement when an unsuspecting deer or feral hog wanders into your kill zone! Speaking of kill zone, it’s just been expanded. Virtually all of us have accepted specific shooting lanes and areas off limits as a result of limited mobility. Not with the Johnson 360! The seat post sits in a nylon bushing at the center of the platform. The seat is virtually silent when moving and allows for 360-degree mobility! This seat system also allowed me to hold at full draw and rotate without obstruction or contact with the tree.
Let me level with you!
From parts to fabrication this stand is 100-percent American made. Powdercoating, quality welding and durable seating material ensure the stand is ready for Mother Nature’s wrath and the 300-pound weight rating allows big guys like to me hunt all day worry free! The only cons I could see were the weight, lack of accessories, and perhaps a slight improvement idea for semi-permanent stand placement.
At 36 pounds the stand is a bit on the heavier side; however, the stand is comprised of several smaller pieces allowing for improved distribution of weight for carrying into your favorite spot. My hope is that Johnson 360 offers a lighter stand with the same innovation for more frequent stand relocations. I would also like to see more accessories, perhaps a larger or wider seat option for bigger guys, arm rests, attachable pockets or gear bin and even some type of rest for rifle hunters and cameramen. Having said that, Jeremy Johnson, owner of Johnson Treestands, confirmed the company is currently working on some great accessories.
Life at the top of treestand innovation might get lonely if other treestand makers don’t figure out a way to keep up with this type of forward thinking development. The Johnson 360 Treestand was specifically designed with excuse removal in mind. The ability to hang this lock-on treestand on virtually any mature tree standing at up to a 45-degree angle was simply mind-blowing. While weight is a minor factor, this treestand is rock solid, incredibly comfortable and chock-full of my favorite ingredient, innovation; in fact, the Johnson 360 Treestand is nothing less than a game changer for tree hugging hunters everywhere!
About Kevin Reese
Kevin is an award-winning outdoor writer, photographer, videographer, speaker, host of Global Outfitters TV Show's GO Tips and a Marine Corps veteran. He owns and administers www.Just-Hunt.com and Just-Hunt A Blog at blog.just-hunt.com. Just-Hunt A Blog offers great articles, press releases, outdoor industry news and reviews.