With warmer weather, the East Bay Regional Park District is cautioning hikers to watch for rattlesnakes along the more than 1,300 miles of public trails in Alameda and Contra Costa counties.
The district advises against hiking alone, so help is available in case of an emergency. However, the district also noted that local public health rules only allow hiking with other household members during the COVID-19 closures.
Other safety precautions:
Stay on the trails and avoid tall grass. Look around carefully before sitting on rocks or logs.
Pets should be kept on leashes at all times.
Bring plenty of water because park drinking fountains are turned off.
If you see a rattlesnake, or any snake, leave it alone. All park wildlife is protected by law. Let it pass and then move slowly away.
If you are bitten by a rattlesnake, stay calm and send someone to call 911. Keep the affected arm or leg lower than your heart. A rattlesnake bite will generally display two puncture marks with intense, burning pain. For other snake bites, wash them with soap and water, or antiseptic, and seek medical help.