I asked myself that very question as I climbed into my stand on the opening day of bow season this year... WITHOUT a harness. As I sat in my stand, I made a decision... I'm getting a harness before my next hunt. Period.
I have a wife and 2 kids and I have no desire to leave this world, so it was an easy decision to make.
Question is: what the heck took me so long?
I've been hunting for years, and never thought much about getting a harness because I thought they would get in the way, make it difficult to maneuver, be one more layer, be more thing I have to do before I can walk out to the woods, yada yada yada.
Then I see stories like this one from WBAY-TV about the guy who fell 16-feet from his stand and crushed his spine. He was left paralyzed from the shoulders down. Doctors thought he would never breathe on his own, so he made the decision to pull his breathing tube and pass away. He was only 32!
That can never be me.
I dropped the money and bought a harness. I figured it was a good life insurance policy. For less than $200 I got a great, lightweight harness and one of those gadgets that lower you to the ground if you do fall. It doesn't get in the way at all because it goes under my jacket. In fact, I don't even know it's there.
Another plus: it was the one hunting item I bought this year that my wife didn't give me a hard time about :)
Think about it. Get a harness.