The only Garter Snake throughout most of its range with lateral stripes, confined to rows 2 and 3. Extremely variable in coloration and pattern; either stripes or spots may predominate. Normally 3 yellowish stripes, but they may be brownish, greenish, or bluish instead. ground color black, dark brown, green, or olive. Usually a double row of alternating black spots between stripes, the spots sometimes very prominent and invading stripes; occasional specimens are virtually stripeless. Belly greenish or yellowish, with 2 rows of indistinct black spots partially hidden under overlapping portions of ventrals. Some individuals, especially from towards western part of range, have red or orange on skin between the dorsal scales. Scales keeled ; anal single.