Yesterday I broke out my Mast Mate for the first time. I have been up the mast many times using ascender climbing devices, the ATN Mast Climber, and having someone hoist me up on a bosun’s chair. Of all the methods I prefer the Mast Mate to the others and here’s why: using ascenders are just too dangerous, the ATN Mast Climber requires too much exertion, and I would rather rely on myself than others to get up the mast. Besides, I am frequently alone when I have to ascend. Yesterday, I made three trips to repair my wind sensor; the cups on the anemometer required replacement. I thought I could replace the cups in place on the mast head, but no, I needed to bring the entire sensor down, and┬ámake a trip to West Marine. I would never have been able to make three trips with the ATN. I am just too old. I could have climbed the Mast Mate at least one more time.

My only criticism is if I had to perform a lengthy repair, say thirty minutes or longer, standing on the top steps would be uncomfortable. Instead I would wear a harness and secure it to a second line with an ascender.