My wife found this guy on the neighbor’s driveway. Living on the edge of the Cleveland National Forest adds a bit of excitement now and then. Snakes, coyotes, bobcats and the occasional mule deer all make their way into the neighborhood regularly. I am almost certain it is a San Diego Gopher Snake (pituofis catenifer annectens). The coloration is darker than Sonoran Gopher Snakes (pituofis catenifer affinis) which also occur in eastern Riverside County. We also live on the side of a chapparral-covered mountain just at the foothill grassline, while affinis sticks to deserts.
For a great website on California snakes, go here.
UPDATE: You can click on the pic now for a bigger version in a new window. You can see the coloration and markings better.