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  1. #201
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    I ran over a rattler climbing up brown mountain fire road/singletrack last Monday afternoon. It was in the mid 80's. Looks like it got my rear tire. Lot's of snakes out, I must have passed 4 other.

    That's the last time I'm listening to my music while climbing. In fact, that's the last time I'm climbing this fire road until it gets smooth as a baby bottom.


  2. #202
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    Brown mountain is one of my old stomping grounds, haven't been up there in years. Thanks for the report, have been wondering about its condition since getting my new ride about a month ago. See you up there sometime.

    This thread as a whole is great, thanks to all posters for the awesome pictures and anecdotes.

  3. #203
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    Upper Otay Lake Chula Vista

    Almost ran one over today around the upper Otay Lake. He was laid out across the trail on a bend l. Didn't have time to stop just went around him, snapped a picture has he took off.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-1.jpg  


  4. #204
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    Funny, I just realized this is the SoCal thread. Here is one from a ride a few years ago in Jim Thorpe PA, This snake was super mellow and didn't rattle. It stayed like this until it started to rain lightly and off it went into the bush.

    About 1/2 mile later I almost stepped on a 5 footer that was more aggressive and rattled instantly. This was in some 1ft high grass and the snake raised it head up over it to look at me!

    Both of them were dark phase timber rattlers.
    <p>

    <p>
    Last edited by Guitarswheelies; 06-01-2012 at 02:44 AM.

  5. #205
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    I swear, I'd be the unlucky SOB to accidentally run one over & actual get bit. Oooh the irony....

  6. #206
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    Ran into 2 of them yesterday climbing the mountain around Otay Lake off of Proctor Valley. The first was fairly big one 3 ft or so. Right at the top of the Peak at around 1870 ft did not get a picture of him, but he went into bushes right in front of my bike in the first picture. Surprised the #&^% out of me as I just taken my gear off and was not expecting a rattler that high up. The second is a little baby rattler on the way down about halfway to the base.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-dscn5808.jpg  

    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-dscn5858.jpg  


  7. #207
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    I've run over smaller ones. The last one I ran over, about a month ago, didn't even make a sound. It was just stretched out across the trail and I didn't even process in my mind that I had just run over a rattler until after a few meters past it. Came back to see if it was still alive, and it was coiled up, probably in pain. This is a tiny one like the one in Cobra8D's pic. I found a stick and gently poked it, and it gave a rattle sound that I've never heard before; the rattle had a cute sound, in comparison to the loud "water sprinkler" sound that I've heard the bigger ones make. Those, I'm happy to say I've never come close to running over. They're not as well camouflaged as the small ones either, very easy to spot, so I don't see it happening anyways.

  8. #208
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    Damn, maybe I should reconsider this wanting to mountian bike now

  9. #209
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    Sad.

    Knowing how rattlesnakes act and how to treat a rattlesnake bite pretty much makes it not much of a worry.

    A Natural History of California - Allan A. Schoenherr - Google Books
    http://www.aphis.usda.gov/emergency_...20Reptiles.pdf

    I pay more caution to people on foot, esp. ones that don't seem to be out to enjoy the trails or the rocks (more trying to do stuff that they can't do out in public), than the amount of caution I have for rattlesnakes. Those druggies, teenage kids carrying sticks, hunters or other plp who like to bring weapons out to the trail, are more of a worry. I should go out of my way to ride trails that don't have those types hanging out, but...

  10. #210
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Sad.

    Knowing how rattlesnakes act and how to treat a rattlesnake bite pretty much makes it not much of a worry.

    A Natural History of California - Allan A. Schoenherr - Google Books
    http://www.aphis.usda.gov/emergency_...20Reptiles.pdf

    I pay more caution to people on foot, esp. ones that don't seem to be out to enjoy the trails or the rocks (more trying to do stuff that they can't do out in public), than the amount of caution I have for rattlesnakes. Those druggies, teenage kids carrying sticks, hunters or other plp who like to bring weapons out to the trail, are more of a worry. I should go out of my way to ride trails that don't have those types hanging out, but...

    Totally agree, and the only reason the one surprised me is because I screwed up and didn't fully check the area out before fumbling around with my gear. Even then he was totally mellow and just wanted to avoid me even more than I wanted to avoid him.

  11. #211
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    Ever since I got a 29er I can ride right over rattlers and not hurt them. They really appreciate the lower roll over resistance.

  12. #212
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    Proctor Valley / Jamull Mt, CA

    First one of the year as I was climbing from Proctor Valley up the Jamul Mt.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-dscn0352.jpg  

    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-dscn0355.jpg  


  13. #213
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    Live in Apple Valley and i started seeing them couple weeks ago....Gotta love the High Desert

  14. #214
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    Saw a bunch of snakes on Brown Mtn last weekend. No rattlers though. Also a ridiculous number of lizards that like to run race me along the trail.
    buzzes like a fridge

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    The meanest rattlers I've come across in San Diego county are the few I've encountered on the trails in Mt. Laguna. Maybe it's the mountain air that makes them more ornery.......

  16. #216
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varaxis View Post
    Sad.

    Knowing how rattlesnakes act and how to treat a rattlesnake bite pretty much makes it not much of a worry.

    A Natural History of California - Allan A. Schoenherr - Google Books
    http://www.aphis.usda.gov/emergency_...20Reptiles.pdf

    I pay more caution to people on foot, esp. ones that don't seem to be out to enjoy the trails or the rocks (more trying to do stuff that they can't do out in public), than the amount of caution I have for rattlesnakes. Those druggies, teenage kids carrying sticks, hunters or other plp who like to bring weapons out to the trail, are more of a worry. I should go out of my way to ride trails that don't have those types hanging out, but...
    Yes. I keep a particularly close eye on those out there wielding 'Sierra Clubs'. They tend to be the nastiest.....

  17. #217
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    Quote Originally Posted by PerfectZero View Post
    Saw a bunch of snakes on Brown Mtn last weekend. No rattlers though. Also a ridiculous number of lizards that like to run race me along the trail.
    What species of snakes?

  18. #218
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    Quote Originally Posted by ambassadorhawg View Post
    What species of snakes?
    Probably trouser snakes . . .
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  19. #219
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    Sunday we rode schabarum park. We were on those switchbacks above the stables when the guy riding behind me stopped to catch his breath and a 4ft rattler crossed his path. Reminds me to stay on the main path. I will no longer be tempted to take one of those narrow shortcuts with tall grass on both sides cuz if you dont make the climb and have to put a foot down you'd never know if a snake was inches away.
    Just some yahoo on a Wahoo

  20. #220
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    Quote Originally Posted by boyonadyke View Post
    ride in control, and rattlesnakes won't ever be an issue.
    bs!

  21. #221
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    I've run over a lot of them. But, I grew up, on a huge ranch, riding dirt bikes, mountain bikes, driving 4x4s since I was old enough to reach the pedals and peeling panties off of hot chicks if they want to see the ranch. I have also killed plenty of them. Not because I want to, but because they were really close to the houses or barns or close to me or an animal. It's not worth the danger to try to relocate them. But, unfortunately, you can't leave them around the houses and barns. If they are out away from those common areas, then I leave them alone. Just like everything else, they have a purpose out there. One day I was hiking on the ranch with this girl I grew up with. We were hiking up a hill and I walked right over the top of one. I didn't see it till it was between my feet. I didn't even think, I just jumped out of the way. One day my father was following three sets of mountain bike tracks. He was near some brush, he stopped and there was a rattler coiled up next to his foot. So, he shot it with the shot gun he was holding. Right then the mountain bikers came out of the bushes yelling, "don't shoot us". It was funny. Last Friday, one of our horses died from a rattlesnake bite to the face. Her head swelled up about twice it's original size. It wasn't a pretty site. A rattlesnake bite to a human is a pretty serious thing. If you live through it, it will leave you pretty effed up.

  22. #222
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    [/URL]

    South East Side of the hill below Lake Calavera on Friday Afternoon.


    Also this thread is of interest:
    Rattlesnakes and Off-Leash Dogs


    Keep your eye and ears open and stay safe.
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  23. #223
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    I saw a 3 foot juvenile Rattler yesterday afternoon on the ridge to the south east of Lake Calavera. It was off the trail by about 3 feet at the edge of the brush. My wife walked right past and did not even see it. It was not coiled and just relaxing. I stopped to take a closer look and held my dog back. I wanted him to see it and understand that he was to avoid the sound (once he started rattling). What concerned me the most is the fact that the last two rattle snakes did not make any noise right away.

    Stay alert out there!
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  24. #224
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    I saw a 3 foot juvenile Rattler yesterday afternoon on the ridge to the south east of Lake Calavera. It was off the trail by about 3 feet at the edge of the brush. My wife walked right past and did not even see it. It was not coiled and just relaxing. I stopped to take a closer look and held my dog back. I wanted him to see it and understand that he was to avoid the sound (once he started rattling). What concerned me the most is the fact that the last two rattle snakes did not make any noise right away.

    Stay alert out there!
    That's middle aged.

  25. #225
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    whatever age, his rattle was pretty small.
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  26. #226
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    whatever age, his rattle was pretty small.
    Their rattles are very delicate and parts of them break off frequently. A 3 footer is a young adult of breeding age. They get a new button with ever shedding (2-4 times each year) but it's rare to see any rattler with a full/never broken rattle.

  27. #227
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    Saw a rattler on brown last friday. No rattling though so it may have been squished.
    buzzes like a fridge

  28. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    whatever age, his rattle was pretty small.
    Haha, that sounds like a personal problem for the poor little guy.

  29. #229
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    Aren't rattlesnake rattles actually stingers?

  30. #230
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boyonadyke View Post
    Ride in control, and rattlesnakes won't ever be an issue.
    Even if you do ride in control there can be issues, I was riding along a few years ago and was riding off to one side of the trail and I hear a pinging sound. I stopped and looked back and a rattler had hit my seat tube right behind my leg. I was lucky he missed my leg.

    Where I ride you see several rattlers during the hot season. Just pay attention off to the side of the trail.

  31. #231
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    Any snake experts in here want to ID this lil' fella?
    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-img_0799.jpg
    Yelled at a bud to stop him inches before he ran this guy over. Was laid out in the middle of the street right by the car. At first I wasn't concerned with him at all thinking it was a gopher snake or something since it clearly had not rattle, but then the shape of the head was the typical viper triangle shape so I kept my eye on him while we packed up and left. Ended up picking it up on a stick and walking him over to the side of the road so he didn't get nailed.
    Any Juan know what kinda of snake it is?
    I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

  32. #232
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    Iv'e heard of them crossing, but I don't know if it's true or not.

  33. #233
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    I average about one snake a year, and I've been riding trails for almost 25 years. It's just a fact of life if you ride trails in SoCal.

  34. #234
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    Saw two rattlesnakes Saturday south of Sweetwater. First one was big enough I saw it from 100 feet away, looked to be at least 5 foot, had a pinkish cast to the color to match the clay dirt. Second one was about 2 1/2 feet. I spotted the tail as it was crossing the single track. Waited for it to get about 6 foot off the trail. As we went by, it buzzed and made us jump. Sounded like a joy buzzer going off.

  35. #235
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    Quote Originally Posted by DHgnaR View Post
    Any snake experts in here want to ID this lil' fella?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Yelled at a bud to stop him inches before he ran this guy over. Was laid out in the middle of the street right by the car. At first I wasn't concerned with him at all thinking it was a gopher snake or something since it clearly had not rattle, but then the shape of the head was the typical viper triangle shape so I kept my eye on him while we packed up and left. Ended up picking it up on a stick and walking him over to the side of the road so he didn't get nailed.
    Any Juan know what kinda of snake it is?
    Where did you see him at? He looks like a Rattle Snake.
    Crotalus ruber - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Other snakes found in the Wild in Socal are the California King:
    California kingsnake - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Garter Snake:
    Garter snake - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    There are others, but the king, garter and diamond back are the most common from what I understand.

    Here is a good site with more info on California Snake Species:
    Commonly Encountered California Snakes

    I forgot to mention the Gopher snake is very common and looks the most like a Rattler, however no diamond shape head, and no fangs or rattle.


    Also, I think I saw that Same Rattler Yesterday on the ridge south east of Lake Calavera, about 200-300 yards away from where I saw one a few days ago, but I do not think they roam super far. He was escaping into a bush so I could not get a good look at him.
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  36. #236
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    Hawg will know . . . he'd probably try to pick the damn thing up.
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  37. #237
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    Also, I think I saw that Same Rattler Yesterday on the ridge south east of Lake Calavera, about 200-300 yards away from where I saw one a few days ago, but I do not think they roam super far. He was escaping into a bush so I could not get a good look at him.
    This guy was in Alpine. I'm not convinced he's a rattler but his head was strikingly similar, enough to make me keep an eye on him.
    This was the second large snake we ran across today. If the other one would have been a rattler he could have EASILY struck one of us, lucky for us it wasn't. We were descending pretty quickly and my buddy abruptly stopped in the middle of a fast rock section. I was focused on slamming on my brakes to not rear end him and we both stood there for a good 45 seconds chatting and then all of a sudden the ground started moving. It was a good 5 feet long and pretty thick... I was more concerned with unclipping my other foot and getting the F out of there rather than trying to ID the snake, but it wasn't a rattler. Must have been 3 or 4 inches from our tires, right between us.
    I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

  38. #238
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    Who's run over a Rattler? now that its snake season

    Quote Originally Posted by DHgnaR View Post
    Any snake experts in here want to ID this lil' fella?
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Yelled at a bud to stop him inches before he ran this guy over. Was laid out in the middle of the street right by the car. At first I wasn't concerned with him at all thinking it was a gopher snake or something since it clearly had not rattle, but then the shape of the head was the typical viper triangle shape so I kept my eye on him while we packed up and left. Ended up picking it up on a stick and walking him over to the side of the road so he didn't get nailed.
    Any Juan know what kinda of snake it is?
    Looks like a Gopher Snake to me.

  39. #239
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    Quote Originally Posted by DHgnaR View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    That is a San Diego Gopher snake. Very common. I just released one that I was keeping for a few weeks . They are great bluffers/actors. Hissing, flattened their heads. rattling their tails, striking a lot. But they generally don't bite, just trying to scare you off.

    ***look at my avatar.

  40. #240
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    ^ agreed, and a hog snake will roll over, play dead and let off a god awful stench if threatened. Just natural responses to our incursion, their mimicry is kinda neat though.

  41. #241
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    I just released one that I was keeping for a few weeks .
    playmate for your rabbit?
    buzzes like a fridge

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    Quote Originally Posted by PerfectZero View Post
    playmate for your rabbit?
    ...for my daughter

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    Haven't seen many snakes yet up here in Apple Valley....Usually ride in the morning so not sure if that's what it is! I've always seen more in late afternoon right around this time.
    SWING YOUR LEG OVER IT AND PEDAL

  44. #244
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    That is a San Diego Gopher snake. Very common. I just released one that I was keeping for a few weeks . They are great bluffers/actors. Hissing, flattened their heads. rattling their tails, striking a lot. But they generally don't bite, just trying to scare you off.

    ***look at my avatar.
    This confirms my suspicions along with SoCal-Rider comment. When we first rolled up on it I was like "awww cute, a gopher snake..." and ignored it as I started taking taking my riding stuff off. Then we saw it almost get nailed by a passing truck so we grabbed our bikes and attempted to rangle it off the street, and that's when it started looking/acting like a rattlesnake. I went into cautious mode thinking maybe this was a rattler born without it's rattle. We still managed to pick it up and get it out of the street. It hissed, tried to strike us, curled it's tail up and shook it, and even had that flat triangular head; I was convinced it was a rattler.
    I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

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    ^ Thank you for saving it's life!

  46. #246
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    Just ran one over going down Johnson motorway in simi. Single track part around a corner so I could do nothing but lift my feet at the last second. It sat there coiled and rattling for a good 30 seconds till it slithered off into the bushes. Luckily the guys behind me were a good ways back so they didn't see it. But they both heard its rattle as they came down. Scary moment for sure.

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    Moral of the story (i have to keep reminding myself): Two years of post + a bunch of sightings= no one actually hit by a rattler. So, I will
    -keep them in mind
    -look ahead on the trail
    -not panic when I see one
    -try to warn others if possible.
    If for some freaky reason I do get hit
    -make the 911 call first and follow directions
    -if no phone reception move slow toward help or gaining reception to make the call and then follow directions. I'm not sure where to find the stats, but I'll bet the incidence of cyclists dying by snake bite is neglible.

  48. #248
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    ^ probably about the same as getting attacked by a Mountain Lion.

  49. #249
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    I had a little talk with a rattler today who was on the trail and in the way.

    <iframe width="960" height="540" src="http://contour.com/stories/5-19-13-friendly-neighborhood-rattlesnake-mtt/embed?map=false&width=960px&height=540px" frameborder="0"></iframe>

  50. #250
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    Damn, that thing was huge!

    (edit: Is that what she said?)
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  51. #251
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    I almost stepped on this guy outside my place in Agoura Hills. Anyone know what kind of snake this is?



    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-p1080187.jpgWho's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-p1080183.jpg

  52. #252
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    Gopher Snake? I'm assuming it didn't have a rattle?
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  53. #253
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    oceanminded, it's just a Gopher snake. Perfectly harmless, great pest control.

  54. #254
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    Quote Originally Posted by 007 View Post
    Gopher Snake? I'm assuming it didn't have a rattle?
    Yes, no rattle. I just didn't realize gopher snakes got that big plus my area is known to have a lot of rattle snakes so I'm always on the look out this time of year.

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    I've personally caught Gopher snakes that measured over 6 feet long in the past.

  56. #256
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    Gopher snakes can have many different kinds of markings. In addition to the mottled pattern marking shown above, they can have stripes and bands. I have seen one that was olive drab with two pale yellow racing stripes and one that was cream colored with rust/brown banding (this one was gorgeous).

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    Quote Originally Posted by oceanminded View Post
    Yes, no rattle. I just didn't realize gopher snakes got that big plus my area is known to have a lot of rattle snakes so I'm always on the look out this time of year.
    Yep, lots of rattlesnakes around here (I'm in Agoura Hills, too), but overall I see a lot more gopher snakes. Your picture is pretty typical of their coloration, and they do get big! Usually they just crawl away, but they do have an interesting behavior where sometimes they flare out the sides of their head so it looks diamond-shaped (like a rattler's) and move their tail back and forth rapidly so it sounds like a rattle in dry leaves. It can cause you to do a double-take even if you know it's a gopher snake! Always better to be careful!

  58. #258
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    Quote Originally Posted by outside! View Post
    Gopher snakes can have many different kinds of markings. In addition to the mottled pattern marking shown above, they can have stripes and bands. I have seen one that was olive drab with two pale yellow racing stripes and one that was cream colored with rust/brown banding (this one was gorgeous).
    Those don't sound like gopher snakes to me. The olive drab with two pale yellow racing stripes might have been a garter snake; if you catch one of those, they will smear you with foul-smelling feces (a delightful habit!). They often are around water. It could also have been a striped racer - they are super fast, and also quick to bite if you should happen to be able to grab one (unlikely because they are so fast). The cream-colored one with dark banding was probably a common king snake. They are beautiful, not that common around here - and eat rattlesnakes.

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    Had my first rattler sighting this past weekend at San Clemente single tracks. I hear my buddy ahead of me shouting what I thought was was encouragement as we charged a steep climb. Turns out he rolled right passed the snake and heard what he thought was air pressure escaping from his rear tire. As he looked down the rattler was right underneath. By the time I hit the same spot the little guy was slithering off the trail into the brush on my right.

    Saw two more snakes (not rattlers) at Lake Hodges the same weekend. I need to ride earlier.
    Last edited by stop619; 05-30-2013 at 06:30 PM.
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    Had a near miss rattler lunge at my buddy yesterday right in front of me. Don't think it got time to recover to get me. Never knew they were so common here in SoCal.

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    I ran over one the other day, He was sitting just below a small drop, no where to go. Then last year at Calvera lake I was going down a steep, loose section when I saw this monster all coiled up in the middle of the trail. I knew I couldn't go around him without being hit so I laid the bike down because my brakes were worthless on that loose stuff. I ended up sliding right on top of him, I had him pinned under my front wheel until I could get out from under the bike... super freaky experience! I pulled out my iphone and shot some vid of him coming out from under my bike.



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  62. #262
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    I've ran over four snakes over the past two years. No clue what kind of snake it was since I realize that I just ran over a snake after I run over it. The first one was about two feet big while the others coveres the entire width of the singletrack so maybe around three to five feet. I'm too lazy to stop and go back to see if they made it home alright. Glendora and Chino Hills State Park are the places where I see most snakes.

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    Who's run over a Rattler? now that its snake season

    That's a fat bastard. No fun there.

  64. #264
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    Had to make an emergency bunny hop over one on Brown mountain this afternoon. It sounded quite pissed.
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  65. #265
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    I almost stepped on this one at Lake Mead the other evening! We scared the heck out of each other, in fact...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-dscn2769.jpg  


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    Such a cutie. Did you take him home w/ ya?

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    Quote Originally Posted by rjedoaks View Post
    Such a cutie. Did you take him home w/ ya?
    I wish!!! My wife would have shot me dead as I walked through the door with it, LOL! I did have a little fun moving it around for a good picture pose, though. It was only about 20 feet away from where we had our houseboat beached.

  68. #268
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    little rattler at hodges

    New to mountain biking and so far it has been a great outdoor experience for me and great exercise.

    For about a year off and on, I have been riding solo around Lake Hodges (in north county SD.) Starting from my house in RB, through the park entrance on the eastern side , around the northern tip, to the dam, and back, a total of 21 miles. I am a ginger so I tend to like to go when sun isn't out in force yet--lately that means leave at 6 am and get back home by about 8 am. I have really on riding this route about 12 times so far. While riding about a month ago I saw 2 coyotes together which were far too comfortable being so close to me about 5 feet off the trail (at the rocky part above the stream for those who know) so I stopped about 20 feet short of them. I didn't like the way at least one was confidently --and perhaps almost hungrily--looking at me so I picked up a bigger rock in case they rushed me. Pretty funny really, they just their ground as I rode by. Kinda freaked me out really.

    Hadn't seen any snakes until yesterday. I wasn't riding at the time, but walking the same trail with my 15 month old son in a BOB and wife. We were walking up the very first climb coming out of the park (well south of the bridge) and I was walking ahead of my wife pushing the BOB, and my wife says "kevin, oh my god, theres a rattle snake!" and I turn around to see this little 1.5 footer in the middle of the trail and by this time I had already walked over it and another 6 feet. My wife had seen from behind that I had missed it by 3 inches she says. It was a little guy and we are almost positive it was dead. Right in the middle of the trail. Some sort of rattler. Wondering if someone had hit it good and it lay there dead (although we couldn't see any blood) or perhaps someone had killed it and planted it there as a prank. Had a pic but having trouble uploading from this computer, will try again later.

    This has me reading up on snakes and to be honest, I am pretty freaked out and questioning riding hodge and off road in general. I realize the big risk is falling and getting hurt, but I can handle that and forget about the fear of that, but something about turning a corner and running over a rattle snake that lunges up and gets my calf just freaks me out. So much so that I skipped my ride this morning on the 2012 camber comp that I bought off craigslist this past week. I think I will get over it but damn these snakes are freaky!

    I am considering getting some Kevlar socks or something...

  69. #269
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    ^^^ You know what man, I was freaked out about it too when I moved to SoCal from MI. In the 3 years I rode there I saw less than 5 rattlers. And thats after a couple thousand miles of singletrack. It's really not a big deal if you ask me. If you see one in the trail, just wait until it moves along and keep your distance. Its when people do stupid things (like poke it with a stick, bunny hop it, pick it up, etc.) that they get bit.

    They're still gross though . . .
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  70. #270
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    pic from last post

    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-img_30206275432484.jpeg


    this is dead right?

  71. #271
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    Well . . . . did it move?
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

  72. #272
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    New to mountain biking and so far it has been a great outdoor experience for me and great exercise.

    For about a year off and on, I have been riding solo around Lake Hodges (in north county SD.) Starting from my house in RB, through the park entrance on the eastern side , around the northern tip, to the dam, and back, a total of 21 miles. I am a ginger so I tend to like to go when sun isn't out in force yet--lately that means leave at 6 am and get back home by about 8 am. I have really on riding this route about 12 times so far. While riding about a month ago I saw 2 coyotes together which were far too comfortable being so close to me about 5 feet off the trail (at the rocky part above the stream for those who know) so I stopped about 20 feet short of them. I didn't like the way at least one was confidently --and perhaps almost hungrily--looking at me so I picked up a bigger rock in case they rushed me. Pretty funny really, they just their ground as I rode by. Kinda freaked me out really.

    Hadn't seen any snakes until yesterday. I wasn't riding at the time, but walking the same trail with my 15 month old son in a BOB and wife. We were walking up the very first climb coming out of the park (well south of the bridge) and I was walking ahead of my wife pushing the BOB, and my wife says "kevin, oh my god, theres a rattle snake!" and I turn around to see this little 1.5 footer in the middle of the trail and by this time I had already walked over it and another 6 feet. My wife had seen from behind that I had missed it by 3 inches she says. It was a little guy and we are almost positive it was dead. Right in the middle of the trail. Some sort of rattler. Wondering if someone had hit it good and it lay there dead (although we couldn't see any blood) or perhaps someone had killed it and planted it there as a prank. Had a pic but having trouble uploading from this computer, will try again later.

    This has me reading up on snakes and to be honest, I am pretty freaked out and questioning riding hodge and off road in general. I realize the big risk is falling and getting hurt, but I can handle that and forget about the fear of that, but something about turning a corner and running over a rattle snake that lunges up and gets my calf just freaks me out. So much so that I skipped my ride this morning on the 2012 camber comp that I bought off craigslist this past week. I think I will get over it but damn these snakes are freaky!

    I am considering getting some Kevlar socks or something...
    Don't worry about snakes. They are a big part of nature. You avoid them and they will avoid you. Think of it this way, no matter how scared you are of them, they are 10 times more scared of you. How would you like to be approached by what seems like an incredibly giant life form? That's a snake's perspective of us...

  73. #273
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    this is dead right?
    Yes, that snake is very dead.

  74. #274
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    Yeah I think I will get over it but definitely will be on my mind every ride for a while. More scared of me or not, they have a heat-guided targeting system for delivering a venomous bite! Freaky!

  75. #275
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    Yeah I think I will get over it but definitely will be on my mind every ride for a while. More scared of me or not, they have a heat-guided targeting system for delivering a venomous bite! Freaky!
    I understand how people can get freaked out by rattlesnakes, but it's really an irrational fear. The chances of getting bitten while riding are miniscule. Not to say you won't have some adrenaline-charged moments when you do encounter them a bit closer than you'd like, which certainly will happen if you ride long enough. But they are rare and just add a good story to tell. The physical and mental benefits of getting out on the trail are so much greater than the risk of rattlesnakes (or mountain lions, another animal that freaks some people out), you definitely should not stop riding because of it.

    In fact, if you can get over their freaky heat-guided targeting system, you will find they are pretty amazing animals. Next time you see a live one, spend a few moments observing it. It most likely will be facing you and sticking its tongue out - the tongue is "tasting" the air as it tries to figure out what threat you might be. They almost always back down and crawl away if you are just quiet and keep your distance. I consider it a treat when I get to see one - one of nature's creatures with some pretty cool adaptations for living here.

  76. #276
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    Quote Originally Posted by agoura_biker View Post
    I understand how people can get freaked out by rattlesnakes, but it's really an irrational fear. The chances of getting bitten while riding are miniscule. Not to say you won't have some adrenaline-charged moments when you do encounter them a bit closer than you'd like, which certainly will happen if you ride long enough. But they are rare and just add a good story to tell. The physical and mental benefits of getting out on the trail are so much greater than the risk of rattlesnakes (or mountain lions, another animal that freaks some people out), you definitely should not stop riding because of it.

    In fact, if you can get over their freaky heat-guided targeting system, you will find they are pretty amazing animals. Next time you see a live one, spend a few moments observing it. It most likely will be facing you and sticking its tongue out - the tongue is "tasting" the air as it tries to figure out what threat you might be. They almost always back down and crawl away if you are just quiet and keep your distance. I consider it a treat when I get to see one - one of nature's creatures with some pretty cool adaptations for living here.
    You do need to be careful, but not too careful.....rattlers DO have a rattle, and they use it to warn you of their proximity, most of the time. They can strike, at a maximum, only 1/2 their body length. As you live out here, you will get used to them.

    The only time IMO that it's OK to kill one is if it's in your yard and you have animals and/or kids, or in a picnic ground/playground type of place. They do fill a niche out there....they control the rats and mice, and as such are a valuable member of the food chain. If you see one on the trail, do whatever you can to safely encourage the bugger to get OFF the trail.....they usually take a 'hint' pretty well. A human-sized target is definitely NOT what they want to use their venom for...that's for getting them dinner, first, and defense as a last resort.

    Believe it or not, they are more afraid of YOU than you are afraid of THEM!

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    I agree with the last two posts but I've had the bad luck of running over 4 in the last 2 years, always on narrow, twisty, singletrack. The only time I've intentionally done harm to one was when I found a 2.5' specimen in my backyard. It threatened my dog and my son, but it would have met the same fate even if it hadn't been so nasty.

    For the most part, they want nothing to do with you but I've encountered more than one very aggressive Southern Pacifics -- a couple would not yield the trail and a couple actually came at me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Canaan View Post
    I agree with the last two posts but I've had the bad luck of running over 4 in the last 2 years, always on narrow, twisty, singletrack. The only time I've intentionally done harm to one was when I found a 2.5' specimen in my backyard. It threatened my dog and my son, but it would have met the same fate even if it hadn't been so nasty.

    For the most part, they want nothing to do with you but I've encountered more than one very aggressive Southern Pacifics -- a couple would not yield the trail and a couple actually came at me.
    For some reason, I have noticed that while there re not too many rattlers up in the Lagunas, the ones I've encountered in the forest up there (what's left of it) have been especially 'feisty'. Not sure why.

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    If you time it right you can get bit...neighbor lady by my old house in victorville got bit by a mojave green getting out of her car on street a couple months. Shes okay now I think, not sure of the damage.

  80. #280
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    Your chances of getting bit by a rattlesnake, riding offroad are much less then getting hit by a car riding your bike on the road. Someone said something about being to careful. When you encounter one you can never be to careful. Their bite is nasty and at best, will be a negative, life changing experience.

  81. #281
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Cycle Shawn View Post
    Your chances of getting bit by a rattlesnake, riding offroad are much less then getting hit by a car riding your bike on the road. Someone said something about being to careful. When you encounter one you can never be to careful. Their bite is nasty and at best, will be a negative, life changing experience.
    That's true...even a 'dry' bite, one that does not deliver venom from the snake, can become a nasty puncture wound infection.

  82. #282
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    I have been riding Hodges for the last two years and have over 150 rides there including nite rides. I have ridden over two rattlers and seen at most five more. I have seen as many, if not more, coyotes, haven't ridden over any though.

    If you are moving and run over a rattler it would not have time to strike before you are past.

  83. #283
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    That's not true. If its coiled up, they can get you.

  84. #284
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    This is a great example of what NOT to do . . . .

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/SYpB7mTzs5M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    If you time it right you can get bit...neighbor lady by my old house in victorville got bit by a mojave green getting out of her car on street a couple months. Shes okay now I think, not sure of the damage.
    My comment before wasn't trying to minimize the danger of rattlesnakes. There are lots and lots of ways you can get bit - putting your hands onto a ledge without looking first is a classic - and the bite can be serious. So treat rattlesnakes with the respect they deserve! But please also keep the danger in perspective. The risk of being bitten is really small, and even smaller for mountain bikers than hikers because our contact to the ground isn't our body. Just think about the number of bikers who have commented that they've run over rattlesnakes. (Now, granted, we are more likely to run over them because we are moving a lot faster than hikers or runners.) Most likely, the snake is stretched across the trail, and you will be past it before it has had time to react. And even that doesn't happen very often. My main point is that the risk of being bitten while biking is so small, it shouldn't affect your decision to ride.

  86. #286
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    Yeah, that's pretty stupid. People don't realize how fast they are. And, all he did was get it to go under a bush where someone won't be able to see it. I have a lot of experience with rattlesnakes, because of where I grew up, and I wouldn't have done that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    If you time it right you can get bit...neighbor lady by my old house in victorville got bit by a mojave green getting out of her car on street a couple months. Shes okay now I think, not sure of the damage.
    Just like if you stand in the middle of a lightning storm, you may be struck by lightning.

    You a have far, far better chance of dying every time you get into your car and travel with it....

    I've handled many rattlers, even picking them up without the proper handling tools. Here I stand. If you were to get out of your car and step directly onto one and get bit, you were meant to die and nothing is going to stop that.

    For the lady who got bit, I'm glad it wasn't a Southern Pacific rattler. Mojaves deliver neurotoxin which does not dissolve flesh like the SP does.

    I'd call that perfect luck.

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    haha. yeah I have since moved away from the Victorville street where that happened, but it was a street with houses on just one side and a HUGE open desert field across. makes sense stuff would come onto the street...including snakes. From what I heard she was parking and put her foot onto the ground and THEN felt the snake slither I think on her foot or on the side of her foot, so she kicked her foot in some way and it bit her. crazy shet.

    yeah I will continue to ride, hopefully wont see many and hopefully wont run over any!

    luvda, thanks for the reassurance (I think?) lol. If I might ask, where do you usually see them (which side of hodge) and what time is it least likely to see them on hodge? Is my early morning slot a good time? better than evening anyway?

    nice clip 007...what should one do in that situation? ride around it by 6+ feet? do these things ever move in numbers?

    my wife is making fun of me at this point...I'm not gonna quit riding just want to be conscious of these things.

  89. #289
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    can anyone speculate what type of snake that was in my pic?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post
    can anyone speculate what type of snake that was in my pic?
    Without a doubt, it's a Southern Pacific rattlesnake.

  91. #291
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevbeer View Post

    nice clip 007...what should one do in that situation? ride around it by 6+ feet? do these things ever move in numbers?
    Personally, if I saw that snake on the trail I would have waited until it moved along, or alternatively continued around it like the guy could have clearly done. Hawg might comment on some ways to prompt movement but one thing is to not throw stuff at it or poke at it. maybe shuffling your feet in the dirt or stomping the ground (at a distance of course).
    Alcohol may lead nowhere, but it sure is the scenic route!

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    Quote Originally Posted by 007 View Post
    Personally, if I saw that snake on the trail I would have waited until it moved along, or alternatively continued around it like the guy could have clearly done. Hawg might comment on some ways to prompt movement but one thing is to not throw stuff at it or poke at it. maybe shuffling your feet in the dirt or stomping the ground (at a distance of course).
    I spit water from my Camelbak on them. I can do it from about 10' away, it doesn't hurt them, and it almost always prompts them to move.

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    KB, I only recall seeing one on the south side of the lake. All the rest were spread out on the North side between storage and the dam. The biggest one I have seen there was on the North side of the foot bridge. It slithered up the slope and away. I would think the best time to not see them would be in the morning as that is the coolest time of the day and they should be the least active at that time. My buddy saw on last Wednesday night during our ride over by the dam at about 8pm. He was leading and his light illuminated it. I was behind him and never did get to see it. It was going about its business on the side of the trail as we passed.

  94. #294
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    This is the one at the end of the footbridge, he is actually climbing almost vertically on the slope. Approximately 30" I would say.
    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-photo-11.jpg

    This is one I saw at Daley likely the prettiest one I have seen. He was cruising across the fire road and was not bothered by my approach, just kept about his business slithering across. An easy 36"-42"
    Who's run over a Rattler?  now that its snake season-photo-10.jpg

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    Found this guy on the Otay Lakes a couple weeks ago:


    I think I ran over his little brother hiding behind a root on Wednesday in the same area.

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    Perhaps the state should erect "Rattlesnake Crossing" signs on the trails you guys keep running them over on? Poor things!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    Perhaps the state should erect "Rattlesnake Crossing" signs on the trails you guys keep running them over on? Poor things!
    It might come to that, IF we are lucky. The way things are going in CA, the newly empowered, gun-toting "Wildlife Officers" are simply closing entire trail systems down, and putting the onus on mtb's. You might think that's ridiculous wherever you are, but it could happen to you, too. If they see significant (any) evidence of rattlers, horned lizards, etc, killed by rapid moving bicycles, out the bicycles go.

  98. #298
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawg View Post
    Perhaps the state should erect "Rattlesnake Crossing" signs on the trails you guys keep running them over on? Poor things!
    Why, so the government could screw that up to!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Cycle Shawn View Post
    Why, so the government could screw that up to!
    No, the Govt would have nothing to do with the project. I am electing YOU to create and mount all of the signs needed for the areas of concern. Now, snap to it!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ray Raton View Post
    It might come to that, IF we are lucky. The way things are going in CA, the newly empowered, gun-toting "Wildlife Officers" are simply closing entire trail systems down, and putting the onus on mtb's. You might think that's ridiculous wherever you are, but it could happen to you, too. If they see significant (any) evidence of rattlers, horned lizards, etc, killed by rapid moving bicycles, out the bicycles go.
    I've been holding out on my opinion on this closed area thing near San Diego for a while now but I think it's time that I let it all out. If an area is deemed a preserve, stay out of there plain and simple. Even if it's only for a rare species of dog flea that is known to breed there, and even if that breed is known for delivering diseases to all it bites. If research data shows that the area is sensitive, then stay out.

    And if you are thinking that your entertainment is more important than whatever the law is protecting, it's not. Just stay out and urge all of your friends to stay out, too. If we don't protect our planet, it will die off completely.

    The officers are not picking on us mountain bikers, they are trying to preserve nature. Doesn't that matter to you? It really should.

    Case in point. I've been a fisherman for far longer than I've been a mountain biker. The state continues to add closed area preserves along the coast, effectively stopping access to areas that were fabulous for fishing. Generally speaking, fisherman respect the rules afterward by not fishing there. We may or may not like it but we realize the importance of preserving nature so that future generations can enjoy it, too.

    Live for the future, not just for today...

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