With his brown fur, round ears and sweet facial expression, there was no doubt what he was. Plus he climbed a Red Pine and sat on a branch and "whirred" at us. He sounded like a grocery cart with a squeaky wheel. Give up?
This is a Pine Marten! I don't know if they are prevalent in the States.They have semi-retractable claws to help them climb better, and thick foot pads to lift them out of the snow. Mature conifer forest is their preferred habitat.They are normally very shy and hang out alone. I haven't seen very many, so I was thrilled to be given this opportunity to exchange greetings. I'm pretty sure I understood what he was saying too.