Snakes and Your Safety

Many people fear snakes, especially venomous snakes. Any animal may bite if it is startled, cornered, or threatened. Never approach or handle a snake, and take a moment here to learn where venomous snakes are most likely to be in the park.

timber rattlesnake

A timber rattlesnake crosses a grassy patch.

Timber Rattlesnakes

The timber rattlesnake is an endangered species in New Jersey. Typical "rattlesnake country" is the high rocky ridges along the Appalachian Trail.

Northern copperhead in a boggy area.

A northern copperhead in a boggy area.


Copperheads are another species of venomous snake found in the park. They are prefer to make their dens on a rocky outcrop near a stream, pond, or bog.


Precautions in snake country

  • Be alert when you enter typical snake habitat.
  • Stay on designated trails.
  • Watch your step. Snakes seldom strike unless trampled or bothered and can be camouflaged in leaves and other debris.
  • When climbing or scrambling, don't put your hands and feet into places that you cannot see.
  • If a snake crosses your path, let it pass, and leave it alone.
  • To protect your pet, keep your pet on a 6-foot leash at all times.
  • If you are bitten, remain calm and seek medical attention.

Did You Know?