Fall Mack Days gets going Thursday
CHRIS SHAE shows off a large lake trout caught during Spring Mack Days. (Courtesy photo)
| September 15, 2022 12:00 AM
The Fall Mack Days fishing tournament on Flathead Lake begins Sept. 15 and ends Nov. 13. This fall’s event will be the 41st Mack Days tournament sponsored by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.
Mack Days began in the fall of 2002 with 888 lake trout entered by 80 anglers and was 15 days long. The largest fall event took place in 2015, with 19,540 lake trout entered by 494 anglers, with a total of 45 days of fishing.
Last year’s 2021 Fall Mack Days event had 14,036 lake trout entered by 556 anglers, with over 60 days of fishing.
Anglers asked for the opportunity to be part of the management effort of restoring native bull trout and westslope cutthroat populations in Flathead Lake. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Fisheries Managers began the events to give these anglers that opportunity and we would like to thank them for their help in the effort to reduce the non-native lake trout in Flathead Lake.
The event offers up to $200,000 in cash and prizes. Fish entries will be accepted Monday-Thursday at Blue Bay until 6 p.m., and Friday-Sunday until dark at Blue Bay or at different sites and times listed on the website.
There are several tagged lake trout, including one fish with a tag worth $10,000, three fish with tags worth $5,000, five fish with tags worth $1,000, plus one $1,000 tagged lake trout sponsored by Bretz RV and Marine of Missoula. There are also over 9,000 tagged fish with values from $100 to $500. Twice, lucky anglers have caught the $10,000 tagged lake trout during past Mack Days events.
Bonus amounts begin for every angler with their 11th lake trout entry.
Totals are kept separate for Friday-Sunday fishing and Monday-Thursday fishing until the end of the event and then totaled together. Separate cash awards are given for the two categories.
Enter on or before Sept. 14 and enter at least one lake trout to be eligible for the Early Bird prize drawing for $200. Entries will continue to be taken until the last day of the event. Enter online, go to the events page and click on the top of the page for the drop down boxes. You can also go out, fish, and enter when you turn in your lake trout at the end of the day.
There are several ways to win. There are 64 Lottery drawings that begin at $400 and go up to $2,000. There are Top 20 angler prizes for the hard core serious anglers, who fish as many days of the event as possible. The Top 20 prizes begin at $200 and go to $950. Top anglers are placed by their best eighteen-day average of their Friday to Sunday entries. You can choose to fish only one day or as many days as you can and either way, all anglers are eligible to win great cash prizes. Other categories also listed on the website on the rules page are Ladies, Youth, Over 70, just to name a few. Siberian Coolers tickets are given for every ten lake trout entries per day and a drawing is done at the end of the event.
For more information go to the website at www.mackdays.com or call (406) 675-2700 ex 7294 or (406) 270-3386.