2020 Spring Mack Days on Flathead Lake
By angelamontana

Posted: March 9, 2020

Spring Mack Days on Flathead Lake will begin March 20th and will run through May 17th. Up to $225,000 in Cash and Prizes sponsored by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes will be available to anglers at the conclusion of the event. Mack Days Fishing Events are sanctioned by Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks. Get those fishing poles ready and come out and enjoy some fantastic lake trout fishing on Flathead Lake. There is one-$10,000, three-$5,000, and five-$1,000 plus over 6,000 tagged lake trout with values from $500-$100. The high dollar tagged fish will be tagged a week or two before the event begins. Lines will be going in the water all over Flathead Lake from boats and from shore anglers. It is not impossible to catch a tagged lake trout with the $10,000 tag. It has been turned in before.  Try your luck. Catching just one lake trout has brought good fortune in the past for anglers in the lottery drawing with prizes from $1,000 to $450. Tagged lake trout have a clipped adipose fin and are scanned for a tag when they come in at Blue Bay. 

Lake trout entries are taken Tuesday through Sunday. You can choose to fish one day or every day. Your choice-and maybe your partner’s choice.  Competition for the top angler prizes (twenty prizes)-new-1st through 20th, bonus dollars, top ladies, youth-12 & under and 13-17, golden oldies-70 and over, captains, smallest lake trout, largest lake trout, five $100 drawings per weekend, and lottery prizes from $1,000 to $450 will be during the Friday-Sunday fishing days. Tuesday to Thursday lake trout fishing is for increasing your total for higher bonus dollars, tagged fish, Siberian cooler tickets, and five $50 drawings. Tickets are awarded for every lake trout entry under 30 inches in the different categories-all it takes is one fish to win. Bonus amounts are based on the total number of entries at the end of the event. Once an angler turns in eleven lake trout they begin to accumulate bonus amounts. Go to the website www.mackdays.com to read the rules and information about the event. Fish maybe donated for processing or anglers may choose to keep their catch. 

Mack Days Fishing Events are used as a tool by fisheries managers to reduce the number of non-native lake trout in Flathead Lake. It is important to preserve and increase the native bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout populations which were once the dominate fish of the lake. Native fish are an important part of tribal culture and history. They are also important to the history of Montana. Come out and be a part of this important conservation effort.

Pickup sites will be at Big Arm State Park boat ramp, Salish Point in Polson, Somers State Park boat ramp, and Wayfarers State Park boat ramp. Tentative times are Somers-4-4:30, Wayfarers-5-5:30, Big Arm-5-5:30, Salish Point-6-6:30, and Blue Bay 10:00-dark or 9:00 whichever comes first. Pickups are only done Friday-Sunday. Tuesday through Thursday all fish are to be turned in at Blue Bay before 6:00 in the evening. Go to the website to keep informed of any changes or additions. 

The website www.mackdays.com includes fishing information, fish identification, weather, maps, entry forms, etc. There are videos for anglers to watch to learn about fishing on Flathead Lake. 

Boat inspection for AIS is required and proof must be shown at entry time. Boat inspection stations are said to be up and running before and during the event. We will not accept entries from any boat who has not been inspected. Inspections can be e mailed before the event begins. 

Tight lines everyone!


via Stephanie Gillin

Information & Education Program Manager | CSKT Natural Resources Department