Monday, July 16, 2012

Hiking The Warm Tandy Hills Thinking About Living In A Police State While Almost Stepping On A Giant Snake

The outer world was almost chilly when I did some hill hiking on the Tandy Hills today, starting my climbs around noon.

Even though the humidity was almost 90%, a pleasant breeze kept me from overheating, too much.

Much of what used to be green on the Tandy Hills is currently turning into various shades of brown. I particularly like the tall sticks of brown foliage you see in the picture. I don't remember what these looked like while they were still colorized.

Have I ever mentioned my two biggest concerns that concerned me when I moved to Texas?

Snakes and the HEAT.

Growing up in Washington I was never a big fan of summer. I did not like HOT weather. In Washington that meant  temperatures in the 70s. Low 80s was a heat wave.

Even though I did not like HOT weather in Western Washington, I did like to go to Eastern Washington (East of the Mountains, in Western Washington lingo) in summer.

Eastern Washington is sort of like North Texas, only more scenic with bigger rivers, fruit orchards and canyons. And it does not get as hot as North Texas.

I don't recollect ever being East of the Mountains with the temperature over 100. I do remember being East of the Mountains and having snake encounters.

That may be where my fear of snakes was amplified. One time whilst staying at Sun Lakes State Park my brother and I were out exploring when a park ranger came up and warned us we should go no further because there were a lot of rattlesnakes just ahead. I don't think til that moment we were aware of rattlesnakes being a possibility.

That is not a Sun Lakes State Park rattlesnake you are looking at in the picture.

That is a Tandy Hills snake that I almost stepped on today.

I'd just crossed dry Tandy Falls, heading south, lost in my thoughts about living in a Police State, when I almost stepped on that slithery monster. He (or she) was about 5 feet long. I took several pictures, was going to get around the monster by walking behind it, when suddenly the snake turned its head and started slithering towards its tail and then off the trail into the brush.

Snakes can move alarmingly fast.

I have no idea what brand of snake this guy was, except for knowing, for certain, it was not a rattlesnake.

With this incident I will likely be back in overreacting to sticks and roots mode again, til the memory of almost stepping on this big snake fades.

1 comment:

CatsPaw said...

That is one lumpy-looking snake.