Once More Into The Bluffs (continued)

Jeff takes the high road

Steve checks a large crack

Rough Green Snake

snake tracks

One moccasin

uhh, make that two moccasins

Up the hill and down the hill, we slowly made our way northward.  In several places rock falls made it impossible for us to hug the bluff face, making detours down the slope necessary.  For thousands of years material has been accumulating at the base of the bluffs; rocks and soil and leaf litter deposited in a slope that drops away towards the bottomland below.  The terrain was difficult enough to keep casual hikers away.

More moccasins of all sizes lay in the leaf litter close to the rock.  All of them looked fat and healthy, ready for the coming months underground.  Rarely do I see a thin, undernourished Cottonmouth, spring or fall.  No two juveniles look alike; some have the rich browns, reds and rust colors, others have already started to gain their dark adult coloration.  Some have bright yellow tails, while other tails have faded.


Jeff made a nice find - an adult Rough Green Snake, clinging to the rock with its head angled down towards a large crack.  At first we thought the snake was heading for the opening, but after watching it for a bit it looked the snake was waiting for a meal, waving the front third of its body like a vine in the breeze.  A life-lister for Jeff, who lives up in the land of Smooth Greens.


In some places where the leaf litter hadn't covered up the dust and sand along the bluff base, we could see tracks left by serpents moving to and from cracks and crevices.  Apparently a lot of snakes are close to their winter quarters, but not ready to turn in for good.

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