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Old 06-30-2008, 06:37 PM   #5
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Kingwood
Default Blowed Up Snakes

John Shelley

Many years ago, I used to bass fish a lot and a co-worker at the Katy Railroad and I fished a lot of tournaments together.

One day in early spring we were fishing a tournament on Lake Whitney when, while trolling along side a big rock bluff, I thought I noticed something unusual laying in one of the crevices in the rocks. I mentioned it to my partner and we circled back by the spot and noticed several snakes denned up in the crevice.

Until that day, I didn’t know copperheads and rattlesnakes would den together, but sure enough, there were several of each in the den.

Well, being the good citizens that we were, we just couldn’t let this go without making some effort to kill the snakes. It was just the right thing to do you know!

So we set out discussing just how we were gonna do it. Now, this was back in the days when most boats didn’t have built in gas tanks, but rather used the 6 gallon portable type that required you to mix oil with the gasoline.

Being employees of the railroad, we had access to plenty of signal flares that we used to stop trains when an emergency arose and I generally kept a few in the boat in case the situation ever called for me to stop a train out on the lake you see.

Well, we got the bright idea that we’d cut the top out of a Coke can and pour up some gas from the fuel tank. I’d put the trolling motor on high speed and as we trolled by the snake den, I’d dash the gasoline up there on the pile of snakes and my buddy would strike the flare and pitch it up there and we’d just burn up this pile of snakes! Sounds like a good plan don’t it?

I cranked the trolling motor over on high speed and away we went – pitched the gasoline up on the snakes and all hell broke loose! Snakes went to rattling, squirming, and trying to crawl out of the den. As my buddy, who was in the back of the boat came by the den, tried to scratch the lighter on the flare, it misfired and didn’t light! Oh brother! Now snakes are going every which way! Must have been 2 dozen in there!

So, I turned the boat around and went back for another pass. By this time, my buddy had the flare lit and chunked it up in the den where all the gasoline fumes had now filled the crevice and covered the snakes. KABOOOOM!!!!!

Blowed rocks and dirt and flaming snakes everywhere! Some blew out in the lake, some hit the boat, some crawled off up the bluff ablaze and set the pasture on fire! Some just blew up!

We cranked up the big motor and got the heck outta Dodge!

Back at the weigh-in site, a whole line of fishermen were talking about all the fire trucks across the lake and were wondering what was burning?

We just said, “Ah who knows? Probably just somebody trying to smoke out a snake den!”
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