DENVER (KDVR) — Rattlesnake season has arrived along the Front Range. Although bites are rare, precautions to ensure children and pets are safe on the trails are important.
Experts said it’s critical to know the distinctive sound of the snake’s warning rattle: Freeze if you hear it, locate the snake and back up about 5 feet. Colorado Parks and Wildlife urges hikers not to use headphones when hiking.
“Rattlesnakes do give a warning rattle,” CPW public information officer Joey Livingston said. “With the wider trails, there are less hiding places for the snakes to be.”
In addition to traversing on wider trails, experts said to teach your children to freeze when they hear a rattle and consider rattlesnake avoidance clinics or training for your dog. CPW said it’s important to keep your dogs leashed and on the trail itself.
If you are looking to avoid rattlesnakes completely, it’s best to hike at higher elevations. Snakes are less likely to be out on cloudy and rainy days, opting to be more active on sunny warm days, CPW said.