At first it just smells like chemicals. Once it starts to oxidize it smells vaguely like bitter sulfur. I have been within 30ft when a skunk got 2 of my dogs and it did not smell like a skunk till 10 min later.
I have a skunk and 3 pups at the end of my garden and they regularly run past my window. I always thought it was my ground floor neighbor smoking some nasty cigars outside my place but now I come to realize it is skunk !
It has this funny burning-my-nose feeling. Not fun.
First, everyone has a first time so it's amazing that so many people are shocked that you can have a first too. Sheesh.
Second. The burnt rubber smell is unmistakable. In fact the first time I smelled it I was fairly certain what it was. If it's rancid in a way you've never known, mark this as the day you became a real Californian.
Well it doesn't smell like any good weed that I've had. A very pungent, acrid, make you want to cry smell. You might have run across a patch of Skunk Cabbage which smells exactly like, you guessed it, a skunk, hence, its name.