Montana’s spring weather has finally made it! Anglers were relieved to have some nice sunny calmer days for fishing on Flathead Lake during the sixth weekend of 2022 Spring Mack Days. All three days of the weekend fishing were warmer and the water was more settled.
There are three weeks left of 2022 Spring Mack Days. The event will end on May 15th but it is not too late to come out and try out your lake trout fishing skills on Flathead Lake. Entries will be taken until the last day and there is no entry fee. There is Up to $225,000 in Cash and Prizes sponsored by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes that will be awarded at the end of the event.
Native fish-bull trout and westslope cutthroat in Flathead Lake are an important link in the fishery of Flathead Lake. Past populations of these fish were once very high until the introduced lake trout increased in numbers and started preying on the native fish. Bull trout and westslope cutthroat populations are now struggling in numbers. They are the icons of Flathead Lake from the past. They have resided in the lake for thousands of years. They provided for generations of tribal and non-tribal people when game was scarce and are important part of the history of the lake. Mack Days Events are one of the tools used to reduce the numbers of lake trout to give the native fish a chance to increase their populations.
It takes every angler with their lake trout entries to make the events successful.
A total of 14,671 lake trout entries have been received. Fridays total was 786 lake trout entries, Saturday there were 769 entries, and 726 entries on Sunday. Monday to Thursday total was 1,774. Friday to Sunday totals were 12,897!
The lottery drawing for Friday to Sunday entries begins at $2,000 and go down to $500-30 prize drawings. There are also 20 drawings that we call merchandise cash. Those drawings are $500 to $100. Monday to Thursday drawing are four drawings of $250, two at $100, and four at $50. Get some entries in and you will qualify for each entry you turn in.
“The Captain” worth $10,000 as a tagged lake trout-is still out there somewhere in Flathead Lake. Any lake trout angler would like to have him on their line. Other tagged lake trout are 3-$5,000 and 5-$1,000 plus a Bretz RV and Marine $1,000 tagged fish. There are also over 9,000 with values from $100 to $500. Catching $200 tagged lake trout the past week were: Jake North of Denton, Mt and Scott Bombard of Missoula. Nice smiles at the end of the weekend fishing.
Leading the 13-17 anglers is Brodie Smith of Kalispell with 37 lake trout entries, Matt Guckenberg Jr of Kalispell has 12 entries, Karson Cox of Charlo has 6entries, and Michael Palmer of Kalispell has 2 entries. The 12 & Under leader is Wyatt Best of Florence with 6 lake trout entries, Gage Spring or Alberton has 4entries, Tripp Bick of Arlee, Martin Phan of Kalispell, Allydia Yang and Ava Yang of Missoula all have 2entries, Henry Phan of Kalispell and Bridgett Reed of Kalispell each have one lake trout entry.
Leading the lady anglers is Julie Perkins of Kalispell with 164 entries, Connie Jones of Kalispell is in second with 69 entries, Rebecca Spring of Alberton is in 3rd place with 18 entries. Ia Thao of Missoula is in 4th place with 11 entries, and Amanda Hoback of Arlee is in 5th place with 5 fish entries.
Larry Karper of Florence has 426 lake trout entries to lead the 70 & Over Golden Anglers, in 2nd place is Mike Benson of Lonepine with 408 entries, In 3rdplace is Larry Ashwell of Missoula with 334 entries, in 4th place is Jack Kirkland of Missoula with 248 entries, and in 5th place is John Gauci of Florence with 44Lake Trout entries.
The Top Twenty Angler Category is a neck and neck race of experienced anglers vying for the top spots. The top two anglers have each been in first place before and each have won the event. Kolton Turner won in 2021 with Jason Mahlen in second. Kolton was second in 2019 and third in 2020. Jason is a seven-time first place winner in Spring Mack Days Events. He has also been in second place twice and has also taken home a fourth place. Kolton Turner of Kalispellhas 975 entries and is currently sitting in first place. Jason Mahlen of Kalispell is sitting close in second place with 970 entries, Bob Turner of Kalispell has 773 entries and is 3rd, 4th place is Steven Benson of Spokane Valley, WA with 509 entries, 6th place is Clint Speer of Kalispell has 461 entries, 7th place is Jerry Benson of Plains with 442 entries, 8th place is Sam Cusker of Bigfork with 425 entries, 9th place is Mike Benson of Lonepine with 408 entries, 10th place is Travis Banyai of Kalispell with 362 entries, 11th place is Scott Bombard of Missoula with 355 entries, 12thplace is Larry Ashwell of Missoula with 334 entries, 13th place is Hank McLeod of Kalispell with 298entries, 14th place is Tom Kemppainen of Columbia Falls with 278 entries, 15th place is Gene Corne of Kalispell with 276 entries, 16th place is Andy Reed of Kalispell with 271 entries, 17th place is Larry Ludahl of Kalispell with 258 entires, 18th place is Jack Kirkland of Missoula with 248, 19th place is Terry Krogstad of Kalispell with 213 entries, 20th place is Sou Thao of Florence with 208 entries.
New leaders in the Smallest Fish Category are Sam Cusker with a 126mm (5 inch) lake trout entry and Bob Turner entered a 158mm (6 ¼ inch) lake trout.
Go to www.mackdays.com for entry, rules, tips, etc. Be safe-follow at safety precautions when out on the water or contact Cindy Benson @ email@example.com or by phone at (406) 270-3386.
Tight lines everyone!