I am TERRIFIED of snakes.
It is completely, 100% irrational. I have no idea why I am so scared, I just am. Hopefully more trail running will just mean coming across enough snakes that I will become used them? Or maybe they will all just sense my fear and steer clear? Who knows. I also have no idea what I am afraid of, most (all?) snakes I would come across on the trails in western Washington couldn't hurt me in any way-- I am no less scared of a wee baby snake than I would be of a rattlesnake, actually.
On my trail run to Annette Lake we heard a skitter in the brush next to the trail, guessed maybe we came along a snake, but I didn't see anything. Made me jump a bit, but nothing too big.
Then on Saturday's run with Belia at Cougar Mountain I saw A REAL LIVE ACTUAL SNAKE. Probably a garter snake, which people tell me are totally harmless (other than scaring the shit out of me, I suppose?). It looked big. Like maybe it could have eaten me (jk).
Just for your reference.
I screamed so loud and jumped, my friend was like "what the hell?!" and I apologized for not warning her sooner about my irrational fear. We had previously been talking about a bear another runner saw at Cougar last week so she said she thought maybe I saw a bear. For the record, my reaction to seeing a bear (which actually could do some damage) would be decidedly less obscene.
Also found this little guy moseying along a log in the middle of the trail. Lately I have been obsessed with slugs and snails, which there are no shortage of on the trails at Cougar!
Anyways, if you ever happen to run with me, consider yourself warned that I scream for snakes and take pictures of snails.