Advanced Treestands 

By Steve Wall

How did you start the company?

 I started Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands to combine my passion for bowhunting and the lessons learned from working in engineering and product management roles for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control over the last 15 years.  It all started when my wife went with me to hang treestands ten years ago, and when I got done she said, “I never knew how dangerous it was for you to be hanging stands.”  The next day she went and ordered me a Hunter Safety System Harness, and I started working on developing a revolutionary system for hanging treestands. That’s how it all began. 

What do your customers say about your products?

Once our customers experience the simplicity of hanging our rock solid treestands, they love them.  We’ve heard things like, “I no longer dread hanging or taking down stands thanks to the “Take-Down” technology”,   “I’ve never felt safer in a lockon treestands”, and “ I’ll never use cheap hang on stands again, my family is counting on me to return at the end of the day.” 

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What are your most popular products and who is your target audience?

Our Take-Down i2 and s2 are our most popular.  Now that we have bowhunters from all over the US using our products, they love the idea of purchasing additional stems instead of a complete treestand.  They set multiple stems across their property and then use the same seat and platform at each location.  This deters theft and also keeps your buddies from hunting your spot while you’re at work all week!

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Our target customer is the hardcore bowhunter who wants the best gear on the market to help maximize their time in the field.  As fellow bowhunters, we understand that your entire season may come down to one opportunity and you need gear that performs.   Furthermore, our families are counting on us to return from the field. When safety in the field is the priority, we have more and more customers looking to Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands.  

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What do you enjoy most about what you do?

I love being able to take my professional background in mechanical engineering and project management and apply that to a company and product line that contributes to an industry I am passionate about.  Knowing that we have been blessed to take an idea from paper to the marketplace is truly a dream come true.  God has placed some amazing people in my life to keep this journey moving forward, and we are excited to see what the future holds for Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands. 

What is your favorite hunting or fishing memory?

I was blessed to be raised in a family who planned Thanksgiving dinner around when the guys would be in from hunting and a father who took me fishing every time he went to the lake.  Now that I too have children, it’s amazing to see them share in the same hunting heritage that I grew up experiencing.  My son just turned six in March so he’s been looking forward to the Arkansas youth season for spring turkey.  Even though he missed his first turkey, it was an experience that I will never forget.  It definitely ranks up there with one of the finest memories I’ve shared in the outdoors. 

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Contact Info:

Website:   www.advancedtreestands.com
Facebook: Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands
Twitter: @advancedstands
Instagram: @advancedtakedowntreestands
YouTube: Advanced Treestands

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Comments from Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits:

Ryan Wheelington, president and founder of Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands has been able to combine his professional knowledge / experience with his passion for hunting!  After reading over Ryan’s answers to the Spotlight questions, I couldn’t help but notice how closely this aligns with the motto here at Wisconsin Outdoor Pursuits. “Share Your Passion, Pursue Your Dreams”  This is exactly what Ryan has been able to do with the Advanced “Take-Down” Treestands!  With two young children myself, I also admire Ryan’s desire to share his love for the outdoors with his children!

 

This is a segment to showcase and share a little more information about some great companies!  If you know of a company that would be a great fit for this segment please email me at: steve@wioutdoorpursuits.com.  I hope you enjoy learning more about these great companies!

drakes adventures

By Steve Wall

How did you start Drakes adventures?

I read to my children every night and when I was traveling to hunt year round back in the Double Bull hay days, they would ask me to tell them stories of my hunts, so I would grab the magic highlights and tell them in a way that sparked their interest.  The more questions they asked the more pumped I was that they were taking an interest in the outdoor community.  During these travels I came home and was reading a sound book to my boy (he was four at the time) and it dawned on me that how cool would it be to tell children realistic sound induced hunting and fishing stories.  So I went to Wilbur and got his blessing to pursue this venture.  For the past four years, my partner; Steve Karras and I have busted tail making sure to present the traditions and honors of our great sports to our little followerssome day they will lead their own trail.

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How long have you been in business?

Drake’s Adventures just launched in Jan 2015.  We just finished approving our second book “Trick or Treat”.  It will be introduced in July of this year.  The third will follow in Octa great duck hunt that has Drake’s little sister “Cricket” joining their pursuits.

What do you enjoy most about what you do?

Getting the opportunity to truly make a difference in our hunting community.  I had a great father and two brothers that always took me hunting.  The honor and traditions they passed on to me is what I want to bestow on our kids.  Seeing a kid smile because he just pushed the Turkey Gobbling button in the story is un-matched.  When I grew up we had a simple farm noise toy, you pointed an arrow at the cow and it said moooo.Steve and I are bringing that into the next generation with a truly interactive way of introducing children to the beautiful outdoor arena.  We want children involved and we want to get them pointed in the right direction.

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 What are your most popular products?

Spring Thunder is our first book, it is the only current one on the market.  It is gaining ground at a fast clip.  We just launched in January so I am very excited to see how all the seasons, all the different critters, play out.

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Who is your target audience?

The series is really designed for children pre-7. There are great programs like; Jakes, Greenwings, NASP, YSSF, etc that really help to get kids participating in our sports. My goal is to get them asking their parents to get them into these programs. Our overall involvement numbers of hunters is getting older and smaller each day. We are losing our children to this high speed world. No reason to fight their immediate need for stimuli, lets just give it to them in a way that keeps our great sports alive.

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What is your favorite hunting or fishing memory?

Out of all my hunts I would say that the first turkey hunt I took my son Blake on.  He was four and would barely sit still when this giant gobbler worked his way down this ridge towards our decoys.  Ever time I called he gobbled.  As I reached for my bow my son would whisper to me “get him daddy, shoot him”.  As the bird worked his magic in the sunset, I started to draw and my hand was shaking, my son asked me “daddy are your scared?”.  I was so nervous to make sure I clobbered this gobbler standing there in all his glory not 10 yards away from the front of the blind.  When the bird ran and folded up Blake yelled “We got him, we got the big gobbler”.  My eyes get wet just typing this.

 

Watch the video of this hunt below!

 

Contact Info:

Website: drakesadventures.com
Facebook: Drake’s Adventures
Twitter: @drakesadventure

 

Drake’s adventures is going to change the way that we introduce our younger generations to the outdoors!!  A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to meet Keith Beam at the Wisconsin Deer and Turkey Expo in Madison, Wisconsin.  I talked to Keith for a short while and he showed me the video above that led to creating the books.  The excitement in Keith’s eyes and voice as he shared these experiences with me was very powerful!  With two young children myself, introducing the outdoors to our younger generations is something I am very passionate about!  Drake’s Adventures is a great way to introduce the sights and sounds of the outdoors to our children at a very young age in a fun and exciting way!  If you have children, grandchildren, nieces or nephews, I would highly recommend looking into Drake’s Adventures. 

 

 This is a weekly segment to showcase and share a little more information about some great companies!  If you know of a company that would be a great fit for this segment please email me at: steve@wioutdoorpursuits.com.  I hope you enjoy learning more about these great companies!