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Zion National Park - Mid May
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Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Zion - Snakes on 03/30/2010 21:11:44 MDT Print View


I am sorry I started the snake-thing, we have hi-jacked Steve's thread. Bob G mentioned that a rattler can only "strike" from a coiled position. That is true, but it does not mean they cannot bite if they are not coiled. So keep your distance. Also, I have found that they do not necessarily rattle when you are close, but only when threatened. But don't assume they will not strike or bite if they don't warn with a rattle.

Where I live, they live, which is in the desert. So I am used to seeing them, but they are not as plentiful as most might think. I see most snakes at 5,000 - 7,000 feet.

My wife is terrified of snakes, and I think it detracts from here hiking enjoyment. She always sees the snakes before me, because she is focused/worried about them. But over the past 8 years, she has gotten better. She is slowly beginning to see that really are not a threat, unless we threaten them.

Bottom line is to enjoy your hike. If you are more comfortable with a shelter, footwear, leggings, etc. that will "protect" you, then use them. Better to carry a little more weight, than stress about it and ruin your trip.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Zion - Snakes on 03/30/2010 23:01:42 MDT Print View

All this talk about snakes is starting to freak me out. Originally, I wanted a bivy so that one didn't slither in my quilt and spoon me in the night. Now that I've watched the videos, looked at the pictures, and googled "rattlesnake attacks on ultralight hikers", I'm starting to think I'm not cut out for this line of work! ;)

So in conclusion...the bivy is coming and I won't get drunk and play with rattlesnakes.

And is that you in the Tim Marshall quilt video? Or another rugged famous outdoor adventurer with a Canadian accent named Steve Evans?

HAHA! The one and only!

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Zion - Snakes on 03/31/2010 00:10:15 MDT Print View

You will return safe and sound. You probably won't see any slithering critters.

But we do expect one outstanding trip report, since we have all invested so much time in you hike :)

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Zion - Snakes on 03/31/2010 00:27:04 MDT Print View

"All this talk about snakes is starting to freak me out."

In Canada, all you have to worry about are snow snakes.

Maybe you should get a bivy sack made from Kevlar, and then get a pet mongoose to guard your camp.


Scott Bentz
(scottbentz) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Snakes on the Trail on 03/31/2010 10:41:19 MDT Print View

A few years ago we were hiking in the Golden Trout Wilderness, California. We were with a group of scouts and were trying to complete 20 miles that day. We had to hike down to a lower elevation, like 6500 ft., to get around some ridges. Anyway, as we were hiking, the adult leader stepped right over a young rattler without knowing it. The next person, my nephew, stepped RIGHT ON the snake and didn't even know it. My son, finally saw it and had everyone stop. After heading off the trail and regrouping it then made moves toward our group of 8. I had never seen that before. It was young and had a bit of bravado. That was one p'od' snake! We just moved around and headed out.

On our next to last day, close to the Forks of the Kern, we heard a rattler in a bush just off the trail. I think that thing must have been quite large because the rattles sounded huge. It knew how to defend its turf. Rattle and people will keep their distance.

Sorry for also hijacking the thread, but, it is important to be aware of hazards like snakes if they are in your area. If you plan on leaving your bag or shelter unattended for a side hike, etc. make sure to keep it closed up.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Zion National Park - Mid May on 03/31/2010 10:54:43 MDT Print View

"In Canada, all you have to worry about are snow snakes."

And Big Arse Bears

Russell Swanson
(rswanson) - F

Locale: Midatlantic
Re: Re: Re: Zion - Snakes on 03/31/2010 12:03:29 MDT Print View

My wife is also terrified of snakes. Even watching them on TV freaks her out. We took a trip out to Zion 4-5 years back and, after fretting about rattlers for weeks, she was reassured by a member of the staff of the lodge we were staying at that he'd never seen one in Zion in over a decade. So, first day out we're just starting a leisurely day hike on a trial in the canyon itself, right there off of the shuttle loop and she zooms on ahead, disappearing around a corner from our group only to come zooming back around a split second later just like she's in a cartoon. She's yelling "snake! snake!" We round the corner and sure enough there's a small, foot-long diamondback crossing the trail. He coiled up and gave us the warning and while we're commenting on how cute he is she's muttering about no rattlers in Zion. So, yeah they're there. But I wouldn't be worried about them.

For my 2 cents about gear...we were also there mid-May and it was HOT. We had temps in the high 90's for nearly a week and a few cases of mild heatstroke. I'd bring some type of electrolyte replacement powder in your emergency kit.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Zion National Park - Mid May on 04/27/2010 08:22:23 MDT Print View

Hey guys,
All this talk in the other forums about poo made me do a little googlin' about Zion. What are people doing with it. I guess I really shouldn't bury it as the area seems rather fragile. If I pack it out, is there anywhere to dispose along my route or will I have 5 days of gold in my pack at the end. I always pack out TP, no matter where I am, so I'm just asking about the actual goods itself.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
re: Zion poo on 04/27/2010 08:31:38 MDT Print View

Up on the mesa there's enough biomass to break down the poo, cat holing as usual ought to do the trick. I've used wag bags in the Narrows and other canyons.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: re: Zion poo on 04/27/2010 17:07:52 MDT Print View

David, thanks again for the info. I think I have everything covered now.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Zion National Park - Mid May on 05/14/2010 18:10:55 MDT Print View

Just wanted to thank everyone for their help on getting the right stuff for my trip. I'm leaving in the morning and am pretty much all packed up. I have uploaded my final gearlist for your review. Nothing is changing at this point, so hopefully I nailed it down. :)

See you in a couple of weeks!

Scott Ireland
(WinterWarlock) - MLife

Locale: Western NY
Re: Re: Zion National Park - Mid May on 05/14/2010 21:10:37 MDT Print View

Can't wait to hear your trip reports...I may be out there this summer myself. Have fun and be safe!

ross erickson
(themaestro) - F

Locale: colorado
zion on 05/14/2010 22:59:12 MDT Print View

take lots of videos!!!