Fer-de-Lance aka Terciopelo in Puriscal, Costa Rica

Large coiled fer-de-lance snake on ground.
Fer-de-Lance aka Terciopelo

The other morning we woke up and the power was out. I finished chores with the chickens and garden and went for a walk with Smiley. It was a beautiful morning and the temperature was still cool. The gardener told me the stairs and drinking spring area had been recently cleaned and both looked terrific. 

I walked past the drinking spring and planned to walk up the ridge and loop back through the pastures to the river. I looked at the ridge trail to decide if I was going to take the direct, easy way to begin, or maybe shave off a few steps and begin at a steeper part. 

I chose the easier way and began to approach it when I noticed a large snake coiled up at the edge of the trail. I was about five feet from it when I saw it. I can't help myself when I see a snake and let out a little shrill and briskly walked away as I looked to see where Smiley was. She followed me and we were safe.

I've seen snakes many times and only have a few photos from the encounters. Usually I try to get out of there as fast as possible. This morning, because it was still cool, I decided to be brave and go back and take a picture.