By Amy Kathleen Miller
Every summer for a couple of years now, I would go hiking in the evenings during the week with my three kids and all our dogs. It was fun to go and explore new trails and see what kind of scenery was at the end.
About two years ago, on one trail we went up to a bunch of huge rocks where you could see Salt Lake City in the valley below from high up in the mountains. What an awesome view that was. It was also in a place that could be dangerous if kids were careless. The rocks were massively huge and jagged in some parts. There were huge drop-offs into trees below. It’s even scary to think about what could happen. So I told the kids to be very careful and they were.
There was one time we wanted to go up that trail again and see the city from the rocks. Everything was going very well until we started back down the trail to go back home. Out of my kids, there was always someone who wanted to be the trail blazer, or the one in the lead, the pace setter. Alicia took off down the trail and, fortunately, this time she didn’t take one of the dogs with her.
As she started down the trail, she didn’t seem to realize that there was something all coiled up in the middle of her path. She walked right past it and lightly brushed it with her foot as she went past. She then heard the most scary sound that a little girl of around 11 years old would ever want to hear. It was the sound of rattling.
Alicia looked at it and noticed that it was a rattlesnake. She started to scream and act hysterical. Fortunately, the snake didn’t bite her, it didn’t even act all that aggressive because it didn’t watch her and act like it was ready to attack. It had a rattler but more of a black head like a water snake, which was strange.
Unfortunately, the boys and I were on the other side of the snake and couldn’t get around it. The trail was thin and there was no way to get around. I will paint the picture here for you.
Alicia was on one side of the snake, screaming and acting hysterical, while the boys and I were on the other side. When I first noticed that Alicia was upset, I looked to see what was happening and sure enough there was a snake. I asked Alicia if she was okay, and found out that the snake didn’t hurt her at all. Then I looked at the snake. I have never seen a rattlesnake live like that in the wild all coiled up, and we were at a safe distance to observe it and I was amazed to see a snake in the wild.
The boys and I were on one side oohing and aahing over this big creature in the middle of the trail, with Alicia hysterical and screaming in a safe place on the other side. Imagine that picture. I did manage to get Alicia to calm down by telling her that rattlers are not aggressive unless threatened. We were no threat, so it would eventually leave and eventually it did slither to the side of the trail under some small bushes. The boys and I decided to just calmly and, as quietly as we could, walk past the snake.
I was amazed that through all of this, Alicia didn’t get bitten because she told me that she had clearly brushed the snake and it was coiled up. I was shocked that the snake did not bite her. I am also glad that she didn’t take one of our three dogs with her. A dog would have noticed the snake when she didn’t and someone would have gotten bit, either her or the dog. Another thing that was scary was that we were three miles away from the road, it was a six-mile round trip. I would hate to even think of how hard it would have been to get to a doctor if anything happened.
That is clearly why I think there was a divine hand in it all, someone watching out for Alicia behind the scenes where we couldn’t see. I would like to meet that angel someday and tell him or her thanks for watching out for Alicia.
Editor’s Note: “Amy’s Angle” is a weekly Wednesday feature in this blog.
Copyright 2012, Daddysangbassdude Media
- AMY’S ANGLE – More fun with horses (viewfrommiddleclass.wordpress.com)
- Snake, rattle and rules (rakdyk.com)
- Timber rattlers at Beech Creek (beechcreekproject.wordpress.com)
- A rattlesnake double take and taking responsibility for my classroom (coolcatteacher.blogspot.com)
- Warm, Damp Weather Means A Bumper Crop Of Snakes (dfw.cbslocal.com)