The hoary marmot is a very large species of ground squirrel that lives in the higher elevations of the Rockies. We were fortunate to see this one during our hike to Lake Oesa.
The term "hoary" refers to the whitish color of most of its fur. These animals are often called "whistlers" because of the high-pitched screech they emit when scared, to warn their neighbors of danger. In fact, this is the origin of the name of the famous Whistler Mountain skiing area in British Columbia, as well as the similarly-named region in nearby Jasper National Park.