This was a fun encounter! This northern watersnake spent a lot of time swimming in the waters of the pond where I was photographing.
As I don’t normally see snakes and had never seen a watersnake, this was something I had to take advantage of and I took a ridiculous number of pictures of it. My favorite shots were one with it coming toward me head on and then a closeup with its tongue out that had a perfect reflection on the water.
These guys are non-venomous and generally harmless to humans. They are somewhat small, 2 to 4.5 feet long (this one was about 3 feet long), and can be found across much of the eastern half of the United States with Colorado being at the far western edge of its range. Fish, frogs and toads make up the bulk of their diet.