North Shore Bell's Trailhead to Cougar Outlook

This guy was 5-6 foot long! He did not mind me taking his picture so I left him as I found him and when I returned a few hours later, he was gone. He has a role in Nature and I respect that.
User: MikeHikes - 9/4/2014

Location: San Angelo State Park

Difficulty:  Solitude:
Miles Hiked: 8.10 Miles  Elapsed Time: 4 hours, 20 minutes


Out     Bell's Trailhead > service road > Dinosaur Trail > Big Hill > Badlands (Horse) > River Bend Trail > Javalina Trail > Cougar Outlook     5.4 miles

Return Cougar Outlook > service roads > Lower Ghost Camp Trail > service roads > Bell's Trailhead     2.7 miles

Today was a first - I saw three rattlesnakes within 30 minutes of starting the hike!  Last week, I saw one two foot rattler in the mid section of the park and thought I was doing pretty good.  Today not 100 feet into the hike, I saw a rattler that was about 5-6 foot long stretched across the road (photo attached).  When I enlarged the photo, I counted eleven (11) sets of rattles on his tail. 

Started walking on Dinosaur Trail and within 20 minutes saw two rattlers, one darker, medium sized and one lighter in color and smaller, separated by about 50 yards of trail.  Needless to say,  for the rest of the hike, my eyes were glued to the ground looking for more snakes but did not find any.

The winds picked up and kept the temps tolerable for the hike, lots of birds to be seen and as the day progressed, more lizards appeared, including a solitary tree lizard near the end of the hike.

Nice temps, windy, saw lots of wildlife, had the trails to myself the entire time - all in all, a very good day!


Suggest you bring your own water when you first begin the hike - there is no water available at the trail head/parking area.

Water, shade and info kiosk available at the dinosaur track area on Dinosaur Trail.

Shade and info kiosk available at Cougar Outlook.

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at the Upper Ghost Camp (some maps say River Bend camping area) on the return leg.

Log Photos
A L-A-R-G-E Rattler with 11 Sets of Buttons
Area around San Angelo State Park
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