This is a black tailed rattlesnake I saw on my way home the other day. It had been smushed by a car and then someone took its rattles. This sucker is about 3′ long. These are the typical sized snakes I’ve been seeing on the trail. These guys are much friendlier than the Western Diamondbacks and the Mojaves, so seeing them on the trails will scare you, but not totally freak you out the way the others will. Jenn rolled up on a huge diamondback about a month ago. It coiled back into a strike position. Luckily they don’t want to bite us. And fortunately that big fellow had a rattle left to let us know he was there.
The rain we’ve been getting will keep these guys fat for the winter. I dread next year. There are going to be some huge ones out here. Hopefully the hawks, owls, and eagles will help thin them out.
Sad for this snake.