Saturday, 25 April 2009

For Goodness Snakes

I've been out here in California for 3 days now and it's already obvious that things are going to be a little different - coyotes, wild turkeys and snakes - and thats just the beginning. The hills around here - within 15 miles of downtown San Francisco are also home to Mountain Lions.

Actually, I love the fact that there is all this wildlife - pretty much its not threatening - but I do have a real phobia about snakes. You see the problem is that I pretty much "zone out" when I am running - I take-in the scenery but mostly I would say I absorb it so I'm not always concentrating hard on where I put my feet so when you get these 4ft, well camoflagued snakes on the trail it's hard to register they are there until the last minute. Add the fact that the 2 I saw yesterday looked much like rattlesnakes and it provides a very sudden and unwelcome jolt when you see them at the last minute.

Having done some rapid swotting up on the local varieties - I now know that yesterdays slitherers were gopher snakes - non venemous - and todays was a yellow bellied racer - also harmless - apart from the fact that they probably all try to bite you anyway if you tread on them.

Aside from all that though - the scenery is great, the wildflowers wonderful and the wildlife/birdlife varied and entertaining. Oh - and the sum seems to shine from about 6.15am through to 8pm on any day with a "y" in it. It's a hard life!!

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