Char-Koosta News

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12,000 lake trout entered so far for 2013 Spring Mack Days

Brandt Hammernick shows off his 39” 18.5 lb. lake trout caught on April 7. (courtesy photo) Brandt Hammernick shows off his 39 18.5 lb. lake trout caught on April 7. (courtesy photo)

POLSON Spring Mack Days anglers have turned in 12,002 lake trout entries in the first 12 days of the 2013 Spring Fishing Event on Flathead Lake. That total is just 145 entries short of the same number of days in the 2012 Spring Event which was the largest event so far in the Mack Days competitions. Fourth weekend total was 3,403 lake trout entries.

Mack Days Events are sponsored by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and sanctioned by Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks. Up to $150,000 in Cash and Prizes will be awarded to the contestants at the end of the event. All it takes is one fish to get entered in the event and qualify to win one of the lottery prizes that begin at $1,000 and go to $100. The $10,000 tagged fish is still out there in the lake along with five $5,000, ten-$1,000, and over 4,000 with values from $100-$500.

Kalispell angler Jason Mahlen continues his pace with a total of 753 lake trout entries. Jason has an average of 63 fish per day turning in days of 86, 71, and 68 for the fourth weekend and has fished all twelve days of the event. Second place angler is Craig Morigeau of Polson with 469 entries-47, 45, and 65 for the weekend and an average of 47 for ten days. Third place is angler Steven Benson of Four Lakes, WA with a total of 425-41, 45, and 30 and a 12 day average of 35. Fourth place is Michael Benson of Lonepine with 419-29, 34, and 29 and 12 day average of 35. Fifth place angler is Scot Mahlen with 375-45, 33, and 40 and average of 31 for 12 days. Bryan Long of Columbia Falls has an average for 8 days of 39 per day with a total of 310. Seventh place Danny Smith of Hot Springs with 275 and average of 28 for 10 days. Placing 8 is Dean Vaughan of Charlo with 260 entries and an average of 33 for 8 days, 9 place angler is Jerry Benson of Plains with 258 and 12 day average of 22 and 10 place is Darren Borgen of Columbia Falls with his total of 251 and 8 day average of 31.

Susan Martin of Polson continues to lead the ladies with 101, second place Nicole Peters of Missoula with 73, Julie Vacca of Florence has 71, Tracy Powers of Missoula-55, and Alyssa Hadley-Kalispell with 7.

The youth anglers in the event are making a race of it with several of them totaling 100 or more entries. Adult anglers in some boats are losing ground as these young anglers are becoming better and better lake trout anglers. Garett Vaughan leads the youth anglers with 227 entries in the 12 and under category. Following is Matt Guckenberg Jr. with 30, Cole Gilleard of St. Ignatius has 24, Abby Hodgson of Kalispell-9 and Dylan Hodgson-7. The 13-17 category leader is Danner Shima of Kalispell with 175, Connor Kowalski is second with 131, Kobe Cox of Charlo has 106, Tanner Murry-Columbia Falls-96, and Brady Weible of Charlo has 57.

Catching $100 tagged lake trout were Conn Hodgson, Scot Mahlen, Ryan Shima X 2, and Brian Gregerson, of Kalispell, Craig Morigeau X 2, David McDaniel, and Susan Martin of Polson, Darren Borgen of Columbia Falls, and Garett Vaughan of Charlo.

Still no large lake trout entries have been entered. Smallest lake trout entries continue to be held by Josh Emmertt with a 178mm-7" and Chris Steen 181mm-7 1/8".

Entries continue to be taken until the last day of the event. Go to www.mackdays.com for more information and be sure and check out the educational videos on lake trout jigging, trolling, and dock fishing that have been developed by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes. Copies will be available soon for distribution. Call 406-883-2888, ext. 7294 for information.

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