I hike a lot in the desert and there is always the possibility of coming too close to a rattlesnake. So I’m careful. The dog has had rattlesnake aversion training and the anti-venom shots. Two days ago we walked along a paved road that is no longer open to vehicular traffic. And we went early in the morning. And yet, on the way back there was a snake in the middle of the road – very visible. So at 6:45AM I saw my first rattler of the year. I think I was expecting some sort of moratorium since I was out so early, but of course, these days the temps are in the low 70s overnight. Probably perfect for a snake. It was stretched out and moved only its head – watching us. I kind of wanted to test the dog’s aversion, but she never saw it. Sat with her back to it. And I was hesitant to prod the snake – not sure what direction or how fast it would go. So I still don’t know if snake aversion training works.
There was another time friends and I encountered snakes (yes, plural). Without dogs, we were digging through an old CCC camp dump in the desert to find old bottles and crockery. It was a November morning – quite cool. We were dressed in long pants, boots, and sweatshirts. After an hour or so, I looked at a rock right near my feet and saw the rattler. Quite a shock. Thankfully it was a cool morning and it was just wanting to wait for the sun to warm it up a bit. Very lethargic. As opposed to me – my heart was racing. I shouted to the others that there was a snake. Not a minute later, another snake was seen – this one more visible and still just wanting to warm up. We haven’t been back there since.