The Countdown Begins to Spring Mack Days Finale

By Beacon Staff

It’s down to the final casts.

There’s only 10 days remaining in this year’s Spring Mack Days fishing event on Flathead Lake. Beginning May 11, anglers will have 10 straight days to land as many lake trout as they can, including the $10,000 tagged fish and other prized catches. There are still five fish swimming around worth $5,000,10 worth $1,000 and over 4,000 worth between $100-$500.

As event officials described it, anglers have been tirelessly competing this spring. Depending on the weather many boats are leaving the docks around five in the morning. Several don’t return until the deadline at 9 p.m.

From the sounds of it, this event has become a true labor of love for some.

Here’s a helpful tip that was passed along: fish are still reported to be in the deeper waters, around 220 to 260 feet below. Jigging or casting out and jigging back has produced the best results.

Last weekend, anglers caught 3,570 lake trout, raising the eight-week total to 25,533. This year’s event is on pace to break the record for most catches set in 2010. That year anglers had landed 24,339 through eight weeks and ended with an event total of 34,350.

Don Beville from Lakeside has the most catches so far with 994. Mike Benson from Lonepine is runner-up with 874. Tracy Powers from Missoula leads all women with 290. Tanner Murry from Columbia Falls leads the 13-17 year old division with 231. Charlo’s Garett Vaughan is in first for the 12 and under division with 178.

The top 10 anglers will be placed by their 18-day average at the end of the event. Up to $150,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded to anglers at the conclusion of the event, featuring a finale fish fry and awards at Blue Bay on May 20.

For more information, visit the Mack Days website or call 406-883-2888 (ex. 7294.)

Spring Mack Days Leaderboard
Through Eight Weeks
Don Beville, Lakeside, 994
Mike Benson, Lonepine, 874
Craig Morigeau, Polson, 805
Jason Mahlen, Kalispell, 791
Steve Benson, Four Lakes, Wash., 732
Scott Bombard, Missoula, 703
Jerry Benson, Plains, 697
Danny Smith, Hot Springs, 665
Larry Schmill, Missoula, 577
David McDaniel, Polson, 575

Tracy Powers, Missoula, 290
Susan Martin, Polson, 241
Nicole Peters, Missoula, 134
Deana Knipe, Polson, 113
Debbie O’Hara, St. Ignatius, 49

Youth 13-17
Tanner Murry, Columbia Falls, 231
Connor Kowalski, Florence, 225
Garrett Beville, Kalispell, 119
Kobe Cox, Charlo, 89
Roger Guillory, Kalispell, 65

Youth 12 and Under
Garett Vaughan, Charlo, 178
Danner Shima, Kalispell, 65
Dylan Hodgson, Kalispell, 44
Alex Moran, Arlee, 30
Carson McDaniel, Polson, 24

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