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Old 05-17-2012, 07:37 PM
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 3,945,327 times
Reputation: 3226


We've been going to Ling Rock (the cave) at Headwaters State Park for years and years to swim and bbq. In all that time, we have never seen a snake. Maybe we've been lucky, or maybe the snakes steer clear because of all the people / dogs in the area... I don't really know.

A couple evenings ago, my 11 yr. old jumped out of the car and headed down the path - and ran right into a rattler coiled up next to the path. I thank God that she saw it just in time and avoided the strike it took at her. I barely registered what had happened before she threw herself into my arms as I was following her down the path (on her way back to the car at a dead run .

Yesterday, a friend of mine was riding a bike along the river path out of Three Forks (ponds to river route). He saw 2 snakes right on the path (smaller than the monster snake we saw, but still...)

I can only think that the mild winter is going to lead to a larger-than-normal number of snakes. I called the Fish and Wildlife, and was told that they haven't had any reports of snakes in the Ling Rock area for almost 20 years.
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Old 05-18-2012, 05:37 AM
Location: SW Montana
352 posts, read 1,006,245 times
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We have been doing some work in the Horseshoe Hills lately and the rattlesnake population there is higher than I have ever seen. The jobsite contractor has hired a couple guys who have a bullsnake scout and they've been catching 10-20 every other day, sometimes more. Due to this count, could be many are migrating further west.

There have always been a lot of rattlers in the Horseshoes, but the last few years have seen a boom. Don't know why that is, but it's amazing to me the number of mice and other prey that must be available to feed that many. Last year another job we worked on up there yielded over three hundred before they ever really started to build..every time they'd turn over any materials or stir things up in the morning a bunch were hidden out under and around stuff. Tough to make any time when you're always having to watch that careful.
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Old 05-18-2012, 05:40 PM
Location: North Dakota
7,724 posts, read 9,021,232 times
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I've always seen lots of snakes in the Headwaters State Park even after cold winters. I've heard that there are some denning sites where they hibernate. This time of year is when they start waking up so that could be it as well.
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Old 05-19-2012, 11:27 AM
18,852 posts, read 31,703,820 times
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Okay. Forget about me going hiking anywhere but Glacier...we know global warming is taking over when Glacier has as many snakes as the Everglades.
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Old 05-20-2012, 08:41 AM
540 posts, read 1,088,743 times
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There's no reason that there would be more of them in a mild winter aside from the fact that they come out early. Winter typically doesn't kill off snakes.
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:16 AM
Location: Montana
1,219 posts, read 2,814,971 times
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There has always been rattlers in that country... I used to hunt them in the same area for years, and out north of Manhattan.
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