|March 20, 2014
Zealous anglers start off 2014 Spring Mack Days
POLSON — After a long cold winter, Spring Mack Days 2014 began on Friday March 14 with a total of one thousand fifty five lake trout entered by fifty-eight zealous anglers excited to be outdoors and fishing on Flathead Lake. Saturday’s fish total came to one thousand one hundred sixty seven and on a windy and blustery Sunday six hundred fifty lake trout were turned in. There were one hundred eighty one anglers turning in a total of two thousand eight hundred seventy two lake trout throughout the 3-day weekend. The 2013 Spring Event fish total for the first three days came to two thousand two hundred twenty eight lake trout entries turned in by one hundred sixty anglers.
Jason Mahlen of Kalispell leads the anglers with a total of 190 lake trout entries. Jason had the highest total on Friday with 96 and Sunday with 57, 2nd Scott Bombard-Missoula-180, 3rd Mike Benson-Lonepine-132, 4th Jerry Benson-Plains-127, 5th Kevin Burns-Kalispell-100, 6th Steven Benson-Four Lakes, WA.-97, 7th Robert Turner-Columbia Falls-90, 8th Scott Mahlen-Kalispell-89, 9th Ryan Shima-Kalispell-82-high total for Saturday, and 10th Larry Karper-Florence-79. Larry also leads the 70 and Over Category.
Youth anglers 13-17 leaders are Garett Vaughan-with 45, 2nd Kobe Cox-Charlo-40, 3rd-Danner Shima-Kalispell-28, 4th-Connor Kowalski-Florence-24, and 5th-Roger Guillory-Kalispell-21.The 12 & under category leaders are Abby Hodgson-Kalispell with 8 and Matt Guckenbery-Kalispell-5.
Lady angler Julie Vacca leads the ladies with 9.
Paul Soukup of Ronan turned in a $200 tagged lake trout and Dave Cik, Nick Bennett, Conn Hodgson, Al Troutt, Ryan Shima, Larry Ashwell, Matt Caldarone, Garett Vaughan, Scott Bombard X 2, and Robert Turner turned in $100 tagged fish.
Smallest lake trout entries are held by Chris Demmons of Missoula-191mm (7.5”) lake trout entry and Scott Bombard-Missoula-208 mm (8.5”).
Spring Mack Days Fishing Events are sponsored by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and sanctioned by Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks and are used as a tool to reduce numbers of non-native lake trout in Flathead Lake. Up to $150,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded to the hard working lake trout anglers at the end of the event on May 18. There are four hundred and sixty registered anglers signed up for the event. Registrations will continue until the last day. There is no entry fee to register and all it takes is one fish to win in the lottery style drawing with prizes beginning at $1,000 and going down to $200. There is 1-$10,000, 2-$5,000, and 5-$1,000 tagged lake trout plus over 5,000 with values from $100-$500. Increasing numbers of native bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout is the goal and the reason for the events. The native fish were once the dominant fish of the lake. Native fish are an important part of the fishing heritage of the tribes and the state Montana.
For more information you can go to www.mackdays.com. Fishing tips, boat safety, bull trout ID, rules, entry, etc. can be found there or telephone 406-883-2888 ext. 7294.