Rattlesnake on 14ers?

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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by gzrrnnr » Thu Mar 12, 2020 1:47 pm

We found a dead prairie rattler at the Huron Winfield TH two summers ago. The TH is over 10,000'.
Laura M
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by Laura M » Thu Mar 12, 2020 7:53 pm

justiner wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:24 pm
They're all over the place near the Flatirons/Eldo. But that's certainly not 14er territory.
I've had multiple encounters with them near NCAR after descending from Bear Peak, including once almost walking smack into a pair that was mating right in the middle of the trail.

They're also all over the Westminster off-leash dog park, so I never take my girl there spring through fall.
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by CORed » Thu Apr 16, 2020 11:35 am

Rattlesnakes are quite common in the lower foothills. The higher you get, the rarer they get. I've heard enough stories of them having been seen at 9,000 or even 10,000 feet to think that there may be a few that high, but I suspect on most 14er routes, you have a much higher chance of being struck by lightning, or even being gored by a mountain goat, than you do of being bitten by a rattlesnake.
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by Monster5 » Thu Apr 16, 2020 12:34 pm

The only encounter I've had on a 13er/14er jaunt was near the Horn Peak TH on the east side of the Sangres. Those 2WD THs are often just under 9K.

Locally:
-Green Mountain, Dakota, and Matthews Winters; frequently where the trails are near the gulches May - Sept.
-Apex, Chimney Gulch, Falcon, White Ranch, Galbraith; frequently on the sunnier front sides within a mile of the TH. Never up in the forests.
-NTM/STM; everywhere May - Oct. Luckily, most trails are wide open and it is easy to spot them so not a big deal.
-Clear Creek Canyon; everywhere June - Sept
-Boulder; frequently by the NCAR mesa and watertank. Rarely elsewhere.
-Morrison; frequently May - Nov. I avoid this during the hot months except early AM or after storms.

They've never been a problem for me, but I do avoid racing or taking my dog on some trails in summer.
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wineguy
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by wineguy » Thu Apr 16, 2020 12:57 pm

I've hiked many times in the Davis Mountains and Guadalupe's of TX in the shoulder season, March, April, November, and December. I think both could be rattlesnake country. When off-trail I've often worn Crocodile gaiters to protect thorny underbrush from tearing up my pants. Any opinions about whether a rattlesnake could bite through these gaiters? (I've never seen a rattler in the wild though have hiked hundreds of miles in NM, AZ, and TX)
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by bluegrassclimber » Fri Apr 17, 2020 10:18 am

Rattlesnakes are also pretty common in Douglas Co and El Paso Co, for those asking about non-14er hikes. My 10yr old came across this juvenile in October at Castlewood Canyon.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/2hhmf70xig0r ... M.jpg?dl=0

As others have said, very very unlikely above 9000ft.
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XterraRob
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by XterraRob » Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:10 am

Is it considered disrespectful to others hikers if you hike with your pet Rattlesnake (off leash) ?
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by timisimaginary » Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:45 am

XterraRob wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:10 am
Is it considered disrespectful to others hikers if you hike with your pet Rattlesnake (off leash) ?
no, you should always keep your snake on a leash. better yet, use the snake as a leash for your dog.
social distancing since the day i was born...
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by ker0uac » Fri Apr 17, 2020 3:38 pm

Those who travel to mountain-tops are half in love with themselves and half in love with oblivion
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by cougar » Fri Apr 17, 2020 3:43 pm

carrying a 6 foot snake is good for measuring and keeping distancing
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by Vincopotamus » Fri Apr 17, 2020 5:55 pm

I'm surprised no one has reported sightings of the all too ubiquitous Cornback Rattler. Especially common along popular 14er routes without an outhouse at the TH.
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Re: Rattlesnake on 14ers?

Post by brichardsson » Sat Apr 18, 2020 12:37 pm

it's important to remember, it doesn't matter if it's a 14er, a 13er, a 12er, or whatever, it's the trailhead elevation that matters. the lower the trailhead, the more likely to see a rattlesnake, no matter how unlikley the overall chance is of running into one. so don't fool yourself into a false sense of security by thinking "oh it's a 14er, i'm good," because you wouldn't run into them on the summit, it would be much lower.
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