Snakes? Why’d it have to be snakes?

So Saturday afternoon I set out for a 50 mile ride.  It was a picture perfect day – a “chamber of commerce” day, so to speak.  Mid 80’s.  Sunny.  Not too windy.  Humidity not too bad.  Generally a perfect day for a long bike ride.

Until the good ride was interrupted by a heart-stopping, shake me to my core experience.

I was out on one of my favorite roads, down in my aero bars.  Really cranking it, if you know what I mean.  Sometimes when I’m in my aero bars, I have a habit of not really looking that far down the road – especially if I know the road I’m on.  This was the case on Saturday.  I had my head down and was thinking about God knows what.

When all of the sudden, a car blew by me – close enough to make me look up at it.  I was just about to get a little upset at this close encounter, when all of the sudden the car swerved to the right – and into the bike lane.  Mind you – this was about 100 meters or so in front of me – but I went to Defcon 4 at this point.  I wondered if the guy was going to pull over and yell at me or something.  And then, it happened.

I saw a snake come flipping out behind the car. 

Literally, the car had swerved to the right and run over the snake.

I pulled out left and rode wide past the snake, and was suddenly thankful.

While it’s tough to tell the size of this just from the picture – this Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake was easily 4.5 feet long and as big around as my calf. It was HUGE!

This was no little garden snake.  It was a HUGE rattlesnake!  When I passed it, it was “mostly” dead – it was still twitching a bit.  I went down the road a bit, and then circled back as I wanted to get a better look at it.

It was about a four-and-a-half foot Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake.  It was enormous.  The body on this bad boy was easily as big around as my calf.  The head looked almost as big as a dinner plate.  OK – maybe not quite that big, but it was at least as big as a water bottle top. 

I was actually pretty thankful that the car ran over this snake.  Just imagine if the car hadn’t passed me – I would likely not have looked up, and may not have seen the snake until I was right on top of him!  I’m not positive that me running over a pretty big rattlesnake would have ended well. 

So….to say that I hate snakes is a mild understatement.  I mean – I’m certainly fascinated by them.  I love watching them on TV or when they are behind glass at a zoo.  I don’t even really mind the little 6 inch snakes that I pullout of my backyard swimming pool.  This snake was a different story.  I’ve never seen a snake this big out in the wild.  Of course, I know they exist.  I just don’t want to think about it.  I still get the shivers when I think about this encounter!

7 thoughts on “Snakes? Why’d it have to be snakes?

  1. I always love roadkill. Always snap pictures of them. Even saw an alligatot once. Well baby at least.

  2. This is one of the reasons I am perfectly content to live north of Chicago — we don’t have any poisonous snakes up here. In fact, we have very few snakes of any kind. On the other hand, I probably have a better chance of getting shot by a local street thug that you do.

    • I do think that the car purposefully ran over the snake. I can’t figure out why he would have swerved to the right otherwise. I’m still counting my blessings for that guy!

  3. Yikes!!! Nice Indiana Jones reference BTW. That snake is so scary and huge! Glad that you didn’t get hurt in this process – sounds like the car could have easily clipped you!

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