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The Fish We Catch on Our Flathead Lake Charters

Flathead Lake in Western Montana is a crystal clear, 15 miles wide, 28 miles long, 120,320 acres and 370+ feet deep body of water with 168 miles of shoreline. Fed by the drainages of the Rocky Mountains and Glacier National Park, Flathead Lake is the largest natural lake west of the Mississippi. Surrounded by woods and beautiful estates, it is home to osprey, eagles and abundant wildlife. Flathead Lake itself is full of Lake Trout (Mackinaw) which thrive in the cold, clear, well-oxygenated water.

Flathead Lake features a mostly rocky, gravel bottom and ideal water temperatures. Along with the ample food supply, this provides the perfect environment for Lake Trout – with an average catch length of 22″-26″. Lake Trout have been caught in Flathead Lake measuring over 40 inches! The record fish weighed 42 pounds and measured 42″!

In addition to lake trout, these native fish can be found in Flathead Lake: bull trout, Westslope cutthroat trout, mountain whitefish, pygmy whitefish, largescale sucker,  northern pikeminnow, peamouth chub, redside shiner,  slimy sculpin, and longnose dace.

There are over 25 fish species found in the Flathead River-Lake ecosystem. The primary sport fish that we target for catching are below:

Lake Trout

Long-lived, slow growth, deep-dwelling, photophobic, voracious feeder. The main sport fish in Flathead Lake and the apex predator. This trout is quite a catch.
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Bull Trout

Powerful fighter and at this time cannot be specifically targeted in Flathead Lake. They are however caught as "bycatch" when fishing for other species in Flathead Lake. In Lake Koocanusa they may be targeted as long as you possess a "Catch Card" from FWP.
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Rainbow Trout (Kamloop)

Aerial acrobats with good stamina and love ready because this Trout will scream a reel and put up a fight! With a small amount of color on the face, underbody and fin, this trout takes the cake for the best-looking fish in Koocanusa. Will you catch one?
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Lake Whitefish

The bulldog of Flathead Lake. These brutes put up a vigorous fight with unbelievable stamina. These are hard-fighting fish with a mild-tasting meat and average about 2 1/2 lbs but can run over five lbs. We have landed 100 of these in a single charter!
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Interesting Facts About Flathead Lake

The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (MFWP) cooperatively manage Flathead Lake under the Flathead Lake and River Fisheries Co-management Plan.

Lake trout up to five pounds eat lots of Mysis shrimp and can be delicious fried, baked, barbecued, or smoked. Fish from 5-10 pounds are much oilier and are best put back to grow to trophy size. Macs over 10 pounds are mostly for fun and over 20 pounds should ONLY be considered for your wall!

What Others Have to Say!

Dillon Tiffany was very professional and gave us a great experience. Very personable and fun to be around. You can see the passion he has for fishing and giving his customers a memorable experience. We had so much fun….

Karli M.

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Booked a half day fishing trip on Flathead Lake for husband’s birthday. Our guide Pete Jellar was fantastic! Took us fishing for whitefish! It was so fun and a great morning with a great guide. Captain Mike’s fishing charter was great with communication and easy to book online!…

Ashley H.

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