How would you react if you were out for a relaxing hike in Missouri and ahead of you was a huge timber rattlesnake? The response from a just shared video is to grab a phone and start recording video.

According to the hiker's description, this human vs snake encounter happened in Trail of Tears State Park near Jackson, MO. If you're not familiar with Trail of Tears State Park, think Cape Girardeau.

The hikers said this timber rattler moment happened last month.

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Growing up in Missouri, I was more familiar with copperheads and water moccasins as the snakes to watch out for. I remember being at the Marion County Fair doing radio things when a girl came by who had just been bitten by a water moccasin in a nearby creek. Her arm had swollen up something fierce so we directed her to the first aid tent immediately.

As Missouri Department of Conservation points out, timber rattlesnakes are not rare here. Actually being bitten by one is not common, but you still need to be aware...and listening for that rattle.  Here's how they describe the habitat you find these critters near:

This rattlesnake lives on rocky, wooded hillsides and mature forests. In Missouri, it tends to congregate in selected south-facing rocky areas where it overwinters. Due to the rough country where this species normally occurs, and the fact that it is mostly nocturnal during the summer, few Missourians encounter this species.

The rule of thumb when hiking is don't put your feet or hands somewhere where you won't be able to see. Logs and rocks are a common hangout for snakes and you never know when you might run into the wrong kind that can actually harm you.

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