Saturday, April 25, 2009

Snakes Alive!

Just What Were They Doing?

After I picked up my order of high fat grain, worked on some rewriting of the script, and then mowed the lawn, I went out to ride the Boys.

It was still around 80 out, so I was in a sleeveless top. I opted for trail rides all around so as not to stress the horses too much, as they still are not fully shedded out.

Toby and I went out first and just as we ended the little loop out to the woods trail, I saw a snake ahead of us. A second later one snake kind of whipped off and the other one raised its head and started shaking its tail like a rattle. Don't panic. We do not have any poisonous snakes around here and certainly no rattle snakes. This was, I think, either a black snake or, more likely, from what I have researched, a speckled king snake. Or, rather a pair of king snakes. One can only surmise what the two of them might have been doing before I arrived.

We did not get close enough for me to really tell as Toby spooked pretty badly and really didn't want to get to close. I don't blame him. While I am not afraid of snakes, this one was really showing an aggressive attitude, standing up to a 1200 pound horse. We cut through the trees and finished up a nice, snakeless rest of the ride.

I took Tucker out next. He was a bit spooky heading into the woods from the field, but otherwise a good boy. The snake was still there when we got back to the trail near the barn, so we to had to detour through the trees.

The snake was still there...I guess basking in the nice patch of sun--when I took Chance out, so once more we started out through the trees. One more nice ride finished off my evening perfectly.

Incredible weather. I do hope it cools off as predicted for the week, though, because my classroom is an oven. I am not looking forward to very many hot days before the end of June.


  1. Yikes! I hate snakes, especially ones that don't move when they see a horse coming. Pretty obnoxious. Glad you got them all out. I hope this cools off and we get some spring weather before the heat sets in too.

  2. Anonymous6:31 AM

    If they were really big, probably king snakes (?). Sorry the boys were spooked by the snakes - we often see small snakes - none poisonous - as our open prairie terrain lends itself to voles and mice. I suspect we should be glad to see snakes (the non-poisonous) varieties around the barn, as that means the rodent population is under better control.

  3. Two things about Colorado... We do have rattlesnakes and I have encountered one while riding a horse. Luckily I was on a very steady quarter horse. He certainly reacted but didn't panic.

    The other is hot classrooms in Colorado. I remember in the spring and fall, mostly the fall, when the kids would go back to school and it was so hot. The nice thing about the front range corridor is that it almost always cools off at night. The cool mountain air slides down into the plains and valleys at night.

  4. Well, at first I thought they were eastern black racers, but after a little research on the 'Net, that tail shaking behavior seems to be typical of the king. Tehy were both good size. but the one that stayed was the larger of the pair.

    I went out after I finished riding to see if he/she was still there, but by then the sun was lower at the patch of it in the woods was gone, along with the snake.

    If they are hanging around that area I'm sure I'll see them again. And, since I have rats in the barn, they are welcome to visit anytime they want too. I just hope the horses don't attack them if they do.

  5. the only one we have to watch out for is an adder, and I've never seen one of those at all! we don't have the plethora of snakes you have in teh States....could do with something to eat the rats round the barn