September, still Hot and Humid, but it won’t last long, and winter is not even thought of (yet). But for the winter prediction some say you can predict the winter by the skin on an onion. It goes like this;
Onion’s skin very thin,
Mild winter coming in.
Onion’s skin thick and tough,
Coming winter cold and rough.
Another sign is the hornets’ nest
location; Seeing how high the hornets’ nest, Will tell how high the snow will
Now for a special group August and September means “training season”. Training season? Training for what? Bear dogs training to run bear. This begins August 1st thru September 24th, 2023. Now this event does not apply to me for a number of reasons;
First, heat it’s just too hot to go trekking through the mountains following dogs that are chasing a bear.
Second is strenuous activity. My big old butt is not made to be climbing steep rocky mountains to find a bear.
Thirdly and most importantly is SNAKES. You don’t need a college degree to know that area is prime country for rattlesnakes and my most feared, copperhead. A rattlesnake will warn you and try and move away, but a copperhead just lays there daring you to get close enough for a strike. And to verify this I want to share an experience a gentleman had during training season a couple years ago. This gentleman was leading a dog down the side of the mountain when suddenly he spotted a nice size rattler moving toward a big
He waited, and the snake disappeared under the rock. He then bent over and looked under the rock and the sight was chilling! That rattler had retreated as far as he was going to, for he was up on his tail with his head bobbing back and forth ready to strike. The fellow cautiously continued on stepping on top of the rocks to stay above ground level. After a few more steps he realized he had jumped from the frying pan into the kettle. For as he stepped on each rock it seemed it set off
another rattler that was under that rock. Suddenly there was a flurry of buzzing all around him.
He suddenly realized he had walked into a snake den. He stopped to plan out his next step and found he was in worst trouble than previously thought. Not only was he leading his dog who he needed to be sure didn’t take a bad step, but he looked down close to his foot and there was a huge copperhead. When I say huge, it appeared he was as big around as the bottom of a soda can, and he just lay there not moving. (See Photo)
Over the years I have heard it said that a copperhead and a rattlesnake would not den up together, but obviously this copperhead had not heard about that rule for there he was bigger than life. Our fellow continues on cautiously and praise the Lord was able to get out of this mess without injury to him or the dog.
I hope that I can tell you more about this next month. On the subject of snakes, it brings to mind in past years how the old timers would catch blacksnakes and put them in their barns. This would help keep the rat and mouse population down and a lot of folks would not kill a blacksnake. Now I’ve learned in our area there are at least two types of blacksnakes. One I call the old-time black-snake which was also called the rat snake with a white and black checkerboard belly. The second is the black racer, a shiny black thin snake that doesn’t get as long as the rat snake but are much more aggressive. I know this because of numerous people over the years that had shared experiences they have had with the racer. One said he was chased in a hay field and the snake actually stood up on his tail to look in which direction the fellow was running. Cammie’s grandmother told the same story, but the scariest story was told to me by Orie Mumbert. an old-timer farmer from Genoa that was well known for his butchering skills, among other things. One day he was in his hay field checking to see if the hay was ready to bale when out from under a windrow came a racer. He tried to run but before he knew what was happening up his leg and on to his arm came the snake. Suddenly that snake started to wrap his arm tighter and tighter. As he was fighting off the snake, he thought about his pocketknife and jerked it out of his pocket, opened it up and cut the snake in two, of course the snake let loose and fell to the ground where Orie finished him off. Now think about that for a second! That brings to my mind a saying I heard many years ago where the old timer replied, “From that experience I wish to be excused!” Well, those are my feelings exactly… “From that experience I wish to be excused!!” I know this, after that the mere mention of a snake was enough to know that Orie didn’t care much for snakes. Now I hope you won’t dream about snakes tonight, but for at least the next 30-40 days just be
sure and look where you step.