From Anthem to Cave Creek, and New River to Scottsdale, dozens of amazing hiking and biking trails dangle like ripe fruit. The paths extend into the desert and up into the foothills with views of the mountains, cactus, rugged but beautiful wildflowers, and glimpses of wildlife such as fluttering butterflies, scurrying lizards, darting rabbits, prowling coyotes and (cue sound effects of a slowly rising “hiss,” followed by an ominous “rattle”) … snakes!
The good news is that rattlesnakes and other venomous desert snakes do not generally eat humans. The bad news is that they will bite them.
Snakes are somewhat lazy and won’t go out of their way to attack you. There are very few instances, for example, of a rattlesnake stalking a victim, following the victim home, breaking in and attacking the victim in the shower or in bed. However, they will attack if you come into their homes.
People like Susie Wilken regularly take strolls through the desert, where thousands of...