…conversely, a lucky driver is narrowly missed by the sidewinder—when stepping out of the vehicle, that is—unaware of the snake at his feet. It was not visible due to its camouflage at the edge of the desert road, and was not realized until the back hatch of the vehicle was opened and it responded by producing a sound similar to a punctured tire. Each of the four tires was examined with a camping light to determine which had the leak. The fourth tire was the charmer. The time and place was approximately midnight, mid-July, in the Ocotillo Wells area, with the air temperature around 100°. After a brief period of photography, the snake was encouraged to move away from the wheels.
Sidewinder photos by Lee McComb