I stopped beside the road and waited to see if it would emerge.
At this point I should have readied my camera - well my phone (I don't run with an actual camera). If I had I could have captured something like this:
This wonderful photo is by Flickr user guppiecat
A fisher. It stood on the side of the road, no more than 20 feet away, for a couple of seconds looking straight at me. Then it moved - and I pulled out my phone and caught it disappearing into the ditch on the other side and then turning to look at me again from much further away:
These are mine!
Not exactly award winning, but you can just about see what it is in the bottom photo.
I was struck by its lustrous coat and its size - it's the largest member of the marten family - similar to a fox in length but sleek and low to the ground. It was quite confident too - clearly in no way tame - but when it left it was definitely on its own terms and not fleeing from its unexpected interaction with a sweaty man just after dawn.