Rattlesnake Den
YouTube: Michael Delaney

Huge Rattlesnake Den in Montana is the Stuff of Nightmares

Humans have somewhat of a love/hate relationship with snakes. As dangerous as they can be, it's hard to deny how much respect they demand. However, regardless of how much respect you have for them, or how interesting they are to watch from a safe distance, it's safe to say none of us want to run into one of them during one of our outdoor adventures here in North America. In many of the rattlesnake-ridden states like Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, though, it can be downright hard to never tangle up with a venomous snake, as the odds are simply not in your favor. Today's clip comes from up north, Montana to be specific, where we see a snake encounter that's anything but ordinary. Dozens of rattlesnakes have all crammed into a small area, hiding out in crevices and a large hole in the ground. As dozens of rattlesnakes rattle away in the hole, the brave cameraman sticks a GoPro on a stick deep into the den to get way closer and personal with the snakes than most would like. At least using this method, you do not need to fear snakebites.

The interesting thing with this video is that even though there were dozens of snakes in this hole, we did not see even one rattlesnake bite the camera. It all goes back to the fact that most species of rattlesnakes are probably more fearful of humans than we are of them. Most snakes simply want to be left alone so they can spend time basking in the sun or hunting down their favorite meals in amphibians, and small mammals. Den sites this large are usually uncommon in most ecosystems. Although it is common for the pit vipers to gather in places like this when they go into hibernation during colder times of year.

Whether you love or hate snakes, it is important for rattlesnake populations to be maintained carefully because of the work they do keeping many rodent populations in check. With a little common sense in snake country, you can avoid dens like this entirely. One must be careful when crossing rock piles and outcrops in snake country because denning sites like this are not a place you want to stumble into by accident. The best thing to do if you come across a den like this, whether the species is prairie rattlesnakes, timber rattlesnakes, western diamondback rattlesnakes, etc, is to leave them alone. Most snakebites happen when someone tries to capture or harm the serpents.

For more outdoor content from Travis Smola, be sure to follow him on Twitter and check out his Geocaching and Outdoors with Travis YouTube channels