And Then I Almost Died From A Rattlesnake Bite …

We get rattlesnakes here.

I know a lot about rattlesnakes.

Growing up in Southern California,

My parents made damn sure I knew/understood rattlesnakes.

(My family hiked in local canyons/mountains almost every weekend.)

I’ve seen many rattlesnakes in my life.  I’ve had rattlesnakes in my yard, on my driveway, etc., etc.

Still …?

Almost stepping on one, can get a person’s heart racing.

Yesterday, Briefcase and I decided to go for a hike in Laguna Canyon.

Southern California is sort-of a brown place … it used to be all desert, after all.

Greenery takes RAIN, and we don’t get much rain here.

(Out-of-state visitors always comment on how not-green it is.)

We got rain last week, though – so we have green right now.  

Lots of green.

And lots of yellow!

We wanted to hike in it.

Photo:  Laguna Canyon.  Wild mustard plants make the canyon bright yellow/gold!

It was a very pretty, beautiful, fun, hike.

(Well, except for the part where my husband chose to steer us off onto a second trail.  Trail #2  had a stretch that goes three miles straight up.  And yes, I really do mean STRAIGHT up!)

I think I’m allergic to all the wild mustard blooming right now.  It makes our scenery so beautiful – yellow, bright, cheery … and – achoo!

Photo:  Mustard plants are everywhere!

There’s pure gold in our hills, and that gold is wild mustard!

Of course, there were a lot less mustard plants at the top of the mountain(s).

(Am I rambling?)

No one really cares about the top of the mountain, do they?

The important thing to note is –

I was at the top of the mountain!

Photo:  View from the top of Laguna Mountains (looking back/away from the ocean).

As we came back down the trail,

Something suddenly moved right under the spot where I was about to put my foot down.

I jumped.

I screamed.

Then …?

I took this unfocused photo:

Photo:  Rattlesnake on trail in Laguna Canyon.

I’m so ashamed of the bad quality of the above photo.

At the same time,

Who in the world runs after a slithering rattlesnake (she almost stepped on), just to photograph it?


If you look closely, you can see the rattle at the end of his/her tail.

It rattled its rattle at me.

I texted the encounter to a friend moments later:

Just encountered a rattlesnake while hiking in Laguna Canyon!  It was bigger than a dinosaur and  [Briefcase]  screamed like a girl!!  Or maybe I did?  He was hiding behind me.  It rattled its asshole rattles at me!

I would never tell you if Briefcase really did scream, or hide behind me.  (He’d be so embarrassed if something like that really happened.)

Eventually we got back to where we started.

You know,

The beginning of the trail where they put up all those ridiculous warning signs (so nobody sues the city because they got hurt exploring nature).

Photo:  Rattlesnake warning sign.  (Not my hand!!)

After the rattlesnake encounter, I needed a few minutes to regain my sense of calm.

The ocean is my soul re-charger.

By the way,

I really hate it when people take pretty photographs and then ruin them with cheap, trendy, filters, don’t you?

Photo:  Laguna Beach

Who does that?

(What a waste of a perfectly beautiful photo …!)

I must still be a little rattled!

(har de har har!!)

8 Responses to “And Then I Almost Died From A Rattlesnake Bite …”

  1. Diane

    We have rattle snakes here too, although for the most part you have to go out and find them…… except for the asshole one that came in our yard in 2008 and bit our dog. That being said, the dog did provoke it, but still… I DO NOT like any snake, and yes, I know that they are beneficial in keeping the mouse and rat population down… But I still hate them.

  2. Jan's Sushi Bar

    I’m so glad this particular rattlesnake didn’t view almost being stepped on as “being provoked.” And don’t be embarrassed about the quality of the photo – silly woman, I’m impressed you had the presence of mind to TAKE a picture!

  3. Mandy

    There is nothing I detest more than snakes. Especially rattlesnakes. I grew up in No California and we had our fair share of them. I can remember when I was about 8 that my older brother who was 10 caught a cute baby garden snake. He put it in a jar and screwed a lid on it. (he did poke holes so it had air). My mom came home and saw what was going on and got after us. She told us that it defiantly wasn’t a garden snake but wasn’t sure what it was. My brother talked her into letting him keep it until dad got home. He would know what kind it was. (this was pre-Internet days). Dad got home that night late. My brother took him into my sisters room where the snake was being kept and once they got there they noticed the jar was empty. That little snake had escaped through one of the air holes in the lid. Apparently my brother got a little crazy poking holes. My dad asked us to discribe the snake. We did our best and based on the discription he was pretty sure it was a rattler. So my parents got us situated in bed and then went to work finding the little snake all decked out in their rubber irrigation boots, gloves and shovels. They turned our house upside down. Finally at about 1 am they found the little bugger curled up on the bookshelf next to the fireplace. Sure enough it was a baby rattlesnake. And the rule was made that there were to be no snakes in the house! We had no problem with that!

  4. Gaelyn

    Sure glad you were quick to stop, and still had the presence of mind to take a photo. You’re excused for the blur under these circumstances.


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