Darren Doyle, story:
A local resident found a slithery surprise on Saturday, August 12, as he was checking a deer hunting tree stand on his farm in the Ollie community in preparation for the upcoming deer season.
Craig Browning, a Chalybeate resident, said he was making sure everything was in place on his tree stand, checking straps, a ladder, and a rope hanging from the tree that he said he used to hoist up a bow.
"As I reached out to pull the rope to check and see if it was still tied tightly in the tree I caught something out of the corner of my eye," he said.
Needless to say, when he saw that it was a 55 inch eastern timber rattlesnake, his focus was no longer on a rope, a tree stand, or anything else on planet Earth.
Browning said he was able to shoot the snake with a handgun loaded with rat shot.
He said had he taken another step or even shuffled his feet he would've been on top of giant rattler without even knowing.
Although "rattled" himself, he was still able to keep calm and prevent the snake from being overly aggressive, and even took cell phone photos and video of the snake.
The almost 5 foot long snake had 13 rattles and a button.
Browning said it isn't the first rattler he's killed during his outdoor adventures. An avid outdoorsman, Browning said he hasn't decided what to do with the snake but some sort of taxidermy work with the reptile was likely going to happen.