Hi, just joined, I love the site, I often use it to find new trails. I've been hiking the Pines for many years, yesterday my dog and I came across our first rattle snake, definitely made it the most exciting hike ever. My dog was on point, about 10 yds in front of me when I heard the rattle, it's an unmistakable sound. It was basking on the trail and not happy about my dog getting near. It was aggressive, moving toward the dog repeatedly and rattling like crazy. Luckily the dog kept backing up and I got her away to a safe distance. It was big, about 5 feet and remained coiled until we left. I won't say exactly where because of the poachers and snake haters, but it was in the Batsto area. I hike this trail often and don't plan on stopping, but will be a little more wary and put my dog on leash where i saw it. Hope you like the pic, I was about 30 feet away.
Jack - great photo! That does look like a large one too.
We've only seen rattlesnakes in the Water Gap and they do up they excitement level on a hike... one time my brother's dog yelped as she discovered one right on the side of the trail hidden in some leaves and we had a tense moment making sure she was OK. It sat coiled and rattling the entire time we moved away.
...and hearing that rattling sound in person is unforgettable.