I was walking the Sandtown Trail at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma when I came across a Ratsnake. This snake was coming out of the grass to the paved trail. When it saw me it stopped and I was able to get a few photos. I have seen lots of wildlife while walking this trail so I try to walk it when I am at the refuge.

Rat Snake On Sandtown Trail
Rat Snake On Sandtown Trail

You can view a higher resolution of this photo here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/screek/41922640250/

How I Got The Shot – Ratsnake On Trail

I was using my Canon EOS 7D Mark II camera with a Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II lens. When I am walking with my camera I use a BlackRapid Camera Strap. As soon as I saw the Ratsnake I started photographing it moving closer after each shot. I was able to get close and low to get this final shot. After I made a few photos I continued on my walk and the snake remained in the same place until I couldn’t see it any longer.

I was shooting with a shutter speed of 1/640 of a second at f5.6. The ISO was at 1000. I keep my shutter speed at 1/640 and above when I am hand holding my camera. I did have my camera braced on my knee and I may have been able to shoot at lower shutter speed. I didn’t think shooting with an ISO of 1000 would produce much noise being that close to the Ratsnake. I had the exposure mode set at manual with auto ISO and evaluative metering. White Balance on auto. I was using single point, continuous auto focus.

Here is a photo of another Ratsnake I photographed crawling through pine needles on my property located near the Ouachita National Forest here in Arkansas: Western Ratsnake Moving Through Pine Needles