Shima Reels in Largest Lake Trout at Mack Days

By Beacon Staff

Ryan Shima was about to move his boat after a stagnant stretch of fishing on Flathead Lake with his son and father last Saturday. That’s when the big fish hit. The fight lasted 20 minutes before Shima finally reeled in the catch. He later acknowledged being a little grumpy because he thought his catch wasn’t big enough to qualify in the largest fish category of the Spring Mack Days competition. But then he measured it.

The lake trout measured 42.5 inches long and weighed 24.5 pounds, making it the largest fish caught at this year’s tournament so far.

The winner of the largest fish category is awarded $500. To qualify, trout have to measure longer than 36 inches and weigh over 24 pounds.

Mack Days anglers turned in 2,952 lake trout entries last weekend, bringing the spring total to 15,097.

The prized $10,000 lake trout continues to dodge the bait along with five $5,000 catches and 10 worth $1,000.

Mike Benson of Lonepine continues to lead the men’s total catch count with 583. Don Beville of Lakeside is runner-up with 566. Missoula’s Tracy Powers is in first for women with 164.

While Shima took the lead for largest catch last weekend, Roger Dilts of Polson landed a qualifier in the smallest fish category. Dilts caught a lake trout measuring 6 7/8 inches. Jason Mahlen has caught the smallest entry so far with a 6 1/2-inch lake trout. The two smallest lake trout entries are awarded $250.

The event ends on May 20. Information about tagged fish can be found on the Mack Days website along with other information about the event. Or call 883-2888 (ext. 7294).

Spring Mack Days Leaderboard
Through Fifth Week
Mike Benson, Lonepine, 583
Don Beville, Lakeside, 566
Steve Benson, Four Lakes, Wash. 478
Craig Morigeau, Polson, 476
Scott Bombard, Missoula, 476
Jason Mahlen, Kalispell, 425
Jerry Benson, Plains, 402
David McDaniel, Polson, 395
Danny Smith, Hot Springs, 394
Chuck Forgey, Polson, 321

Tracy Powers, Missoula, 164
Susan Martin, Polson, 132
Deana Knipe, Polson, 59
Terry Biere, 37
Kathryn Cox, 36
Nicole Peters, 35
Debbie O’Hara, 23

Youth 13-17
Connor Kowalski, Florence, 148
Tanner Murry, Kalispell, 129
Garrett Beville, Lakeside, 75
Roger Guillory, Kalispell, 37
Kobe Cox, Charlo, 30
Brady Wieble, 24
Keegan Noyd, 11

Youth 12 and Under
Garett Vaughan, 105
Dylan Hodgson, Kalispell, 21
Danner Shima, Kalispell, 21
Autumn Powers, 18
Carson McDaniel, 13
Kailey Schrader, Kalispell, 13
Adam Schrader, Kalispell, 13

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