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Spring Mack Days starts out with a bang

Nearly 750 anglers took advantage of the warm weather last weekend and instead of doing spring cleaning or yard work, they decided to dig out their fishing poles and tackle and hit Flathead Lake in hopes of getting a piece of the $100,000 in cash and prizes.

The 745 anglers entered in the 2010 Spring Mack Days turned in 2, 820 lake trout in the first weekend of the event, which has been extended to 11 weekends.

Two-time winner Stephen Naethe leads all anglers with 134 mackinaw turned in over the first weekend. The Pablo teenager also turned in a $500 tagged fish and three $100 tagged fish, which were four of 11 tagged fish entered this weekend.. Missoula angler Doug Fransden caught a $200 tagged fish and Roger Smart, Craig Morigeau, Ryan Shima, David McDaniels, Brad Forgey and Larry Schmill all turned in $100 tagged fish.

Gerald Willet is in second place with his 117 lake trout caught this weekend. He is followed by Steven Biere (111), Charles Forgey, (108) and Brad Forgey (107). The top angler will be determined by the angler’s best 15 days. 

There are 10 top angler prizes with values starting at $200 and going up to $700.

Charlotte Benson leads the lady anglers with 56 and in the battle for second place in the youth division, Charlo’s Brady Weible leads with his 14 fish he caught over the weekend.

No large lake trout were entered over the weekend, but Larry Schmill leads Craig Morigeau by 1 millimeter in the small fish category.

Mack Days was started in 2002 as part of a co-management plan of Flathead Lake between the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and Montana. 

The goal of the event is to gradually decrease the non-native lake trout and restore the balance in the lake by increasing the native bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout population.

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