As the days get warmer and summer approaches, more people are visiting our beautiful Montana. Some of those visitors may not be aware of the dangers that surround them as they are snapping selfies and face timing friends while on their uphill hike.

I have seen a large number of posts about people seeing these venomous predators along trails and rivers. I grew up going to western North Dakota to visit my grandparents' farm, and these sneaking killers were all over.


I'm not talking about bears, we should all know about being "bear aware" by now. I am talking about Prairie Rattlesnakes, or Western Rattlesnakes, Montana's only venomous snake.

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The rattlesnake has the ability to blend into their surrounding better than one could imagine.

The only significant sign of a rattlesnake is... its rattle. The sound their tails make is a dead giveaway that there is one nearby.


The issue is, lots of hikers have their headphones/AirPods in while they are sweating up and down trails, so hearing the infamous rattle could be near impossible.

Tips for limiting a rattlesnake encounter:

  • Be alert. Turn your headphones down (or off) and listen for the rattle.
  • Stay out of long grass areas where rattlesnakes can easily disguise themselves.
  • Watch every step. Rattlesnakes don't seclude themselves in one type of area, you will see them on roads and trails throughout Montana.
  • Be safe out there my friends, and remember, like all other wild animals, please don't pet (or touch) them.

You can get more information on dealing with Prairie Rattlesnakes at the link below.


CC: Youtube, MSU

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