Travel Report: Theodore Roosevelt National Park, ND
There's an old joke that goes something like this: Q: How do you tell the difference between a dead snake and a dead lawyer in the road? Ans: By the skid marks leading up to the snake.
I was reminded of that joke yesterday when driving the 14 mile park road in the North Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota. I came to a sudden stop to avoid hitting a motionless snake in the middle of the road. I climbed off PeeWee--my trusty little Yamaha XT250 motorcycle--to have a closer look. I could see it was a rattlesnake so I wanted to be very careful before assuming it was dead. As I circled the creature at a safe distance--they can't strike without first coiling up and even then their striking distance is short, generally preceded by rattling--it looked pretty dead to me but as I moved around to its side from the back I saw the telltale flickity-flick of the snake's tongue, a sure sign that it was anything but dead.
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