Tree Saver Q&A with GearAmerica: What is a tree saver strap?

Posted by Chris Jurden on

The Venerable Tree Saver!

A tree saver strap, also known as a tree trunk protector, is probably the most underappreciated, yet most useful part of any recovery gear kit.  It has many uses, and is many times overlooked when people put together their gear. With its many uses, you need at least one.  Let's talk about all things Tree Saver!

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What is a Tree Saver?

A tree saver is exactly that...a strap that saves a tree!  Trees are the most commonly used anchors when winching.  The tree saver strap is designed to go around the anchor tree to prevent damage to the bark. Putting a bare cable or winch line around the tree can cut into the bark, ultimately resulting in killing trees.  When trees are damaged, trails get closed...and that's the last thing we want as off-roaders and explorers of the wild spaces.

Check out the damage a winch cable can do:

tree trunk winch cable damage tree saver strtp tree trunk bark protector


Save the trees! How to use a Tree Saver strap

Using a tree as an anchor point is a great way to get unstuck. The tree saver is the first step to preventing damage and destruction of trees, but there are some simple rules for using a tree saver that we should all stick to.

tree saver strap tree trunk protector how to use a tree saver

1. Use a big enough tree.

When selecting a tree, try to be sure it is large and stable.  Sometimes we don't have a choice of anchor points, but do your best.

how to use a tow strap tree saver trunk protector save the trees winch anchor point

2. Keep the tree saver as low to the ground on the trunk as possible.

This will prevent the tree from tipping, causing roots to snap or the tree to be pulled out.

3. Lay the strap flat against the bark.

This will distribute the pressure on the tree more evenly and produce the least amount of damage.

proper use of a tree saver strap winch extension v-bridle tow strap trunk protector

4. Keep the loops parallel.

Don't loop the tree save like a slip-knot.  Always keep the loops together and attached to the same shackle of soft shackle.

Other ways to use a tree saver strap

A tree saver is very versatile.  Not only is it a great way to protect trees while winching, but it can also be used as a short tow strap.  Our tree savers are a special tube webbing, meaning they are lighter, stronger and more flexible than any other strap. They also have minimal stretch, so they make a great short tow strap or winch extension. You can also use it as a v-bridle. There are numerous reasons to have at least one!

v-bridle short tow strap tree saver trunk protector recovery gear short tow strap

Tree Saver Strap vs. Tow Strap: Lengths explained.

Tree saver straps are generally shorter than a tow strap. Both straps are made of the same material, but our tree savers come in 8' and 10' lengths. Using a tow strap as a tree saver can cause more movement on the tree, and limits the distance needed for winching.  If the strap come out too far from the tree, you may not have enough room to properly recover your vehicle.

Do your part.

The tree saver is a versatile, useful tool that everyone needs. Ultimately it was designed to protect the life of one of our most precious assets...the trees.  I look at it this way:  If you are winching off a tree, chances are the person behind you is winching in the same spot. Protect those trees.  Keep trails open.  Get a tree saver or two!

Need more information?  Check out our video below:

 tree saver basics video instructional how to q&a hot to use a tree saver strap recovery gear winch winching anchor point

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