Monday, July 26, 2010

Out come the snakes

I drove out to Superior again on Sunday afternoon. I turned south on 177 when I got to town. I was going to look for a road that seems to go up to the Oak Flat area from 177. There's a long, boring story about why it might be hard to find that I'll tell some other time. I figured I would also check out any other side roads out there.

Storm clouds over Apache Leap. It's like the storms were in the same places as when I left the day before.

On the second or third road that I turned down, I came around a corner and there was a deer in the road right in front of me. It ran behind a bush beside the road. It didn't run out the other side. I looked behind the bush and it wasn't there. Those deer are slippery critters. A little further down the road I saw a road runner. It disappeared before I could get the camera out. The rattlesnake laying across the road wasn't as fast though.

The rattlesnake didn't run away. Snicker. It didn't slither away at first, either. It may have frozen to try to go unnoticed.

Here's a perfect example of why I wanted a camera that will also make videos. The snake put on quite a performance for the camera. Keep in mind that I have quite a bit of zoom. I wasn't nearly as close as the pictures and video make it seem. I'm not afraid of snakes, but I have a healthy respect for the poisonous ones. It would be foolish to put yourself close enough to one of these that it could take a strike at you.

At one point I was driving down Battle Axe road (the road to White Canyon). It had lots of little gullies across it from the rain. There were also sticks laying across it. So there were lots of things across the road that I didn't really need to pay much attention to. Instead, I was looking ahead at the cliffs near White Canyon. Then I noticed the black and white stripes around one of the things in the road. I slammed on the brakes but it was too late. I went over its tail. I felt really bad. I guess if one ever bites me I won't feel so bad about running over a rattlesnake, but they have their place in the scheme of things and they're pretty animals. Maybe it'll survive and bite somebody because it doesn't have a rattle to warn them. Gee, I hope not. I continued down that road for a while and decided I had better get out before the road got slippery. Rain was moving in.

I thought I might get some really cool pictures of sun's rays, but I just got some so-so pictures.

Third rattler of the day.

On the way back to pavement, I came across the third rattler of the day. There must be something about the cooler weather or the wet weather that has them out and about in the middle of the day. As with the other two, it was stock still in the road. I got out to take pictures and got close enough to get it stirred up. They will ignore pickups until they get run over but they don't want people getting too close. This one rattled as it backed away.

Once it got to the bushes at the side of the road, it quit rattling and hurried away. Then, in the quiet, I heard the other sound. The ominous crackling of high voltage power lines. I turned around and there they were, right behind me. They're following me around! I looked down at the road. Yes, it was still damp from the last shower. I hurried back to the truck and got out of there.

The scary part.

Click below to see all of the pictures.


No comments: