Thursday, April 1, 2010

No April Fool's Joke, This Sucker Is One Beeg Fish...

17 years young Stephen Naethe obviously knows how to catch fish. But this one surprised even him.  It took the Pablo teen over 30 minutes to put the 41 3/4 inch, 30.4 pound lake trout in the net.

Perhaps even more surprising  he took its measurements, snapped a picture and released it back into the lake. Good on him for it's the largest lake trout he ever caught and very well might be his biggest ever...as they say time will tell the ending to that tale.

Nonetheless the monster puts him at the top of the leader board in the "largest fish" category and in first place overall with 426 entries so far at the 2010 Mack Days competition that continues on Montana's sprawling Flathead Lake.

Steven Benson of Columbia Falls is in second place in the overall fish count with 303. Don Peters of Missoula is third at 298. Three weekends into the competition, anglers caught 9,822 lake trout.

Mack Days is part of the Flathead Lake co-management plan sanctioned by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes and Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks to reduce non-native lake trout and increase the numbers of native bull trout and westslope cutthroat trout.

Anglers are competing for $100,000 in cash and prizes and there are 972 anglers registered in the Spring event. It ends May 23rd with a fish fry and awards.

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