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An average lake trout is considered to be in the three to eight pound range and are caught frequently. Flathead Lake is a remnant of Glacial Lake Missoula, which covered much of Western Montana until roughly 15,000 years ago. The east shore is bordered by Montana Highway 35 and the west side of the lake is accessible from US Highway 93 between Polson and Kalispell. Located in the northwest corner of the state of Montana, 7 miles (11 km) south of Kalispell, it is approximately 30 miles (48 km) long and 16 miles (26 km) wide, covering 197 square miles (510 km ). The Flathead valley was formed by the glacial damming of the Flathead River and sustains a remarkably mild climate for a region located this far north and inland; the Pacific Ocean is almost 400 miles (640 km) to the west. There are also apple, pear and plum orchards around the lake as well as vegetables, hay, honey, nursery tree, Christmas tree, sod/turf, and wheat production bordering or near the lake. Flathead Lake offers a wide range of recreational activities that attract visitors the world over. The introduction of lake trout has placed increased pressure on the ecologically similar threatened native bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus). As the glacier moved southward it carved out the trench. See all tours & tickets. In addition to these commonly-pursued game fish, the lake is also home to other native species that currently[when?] [18] The trench, which formed with the Rocky Mountains, extends north into the southern Yukon as a straight, steep valley, which also holds the headwaters of the Columbia River. [https://web.archive.org/web/20080512143940/http://www.melitaisland.org/aboutmelita.htm Archived, "Paul Fugleberg: Flathead Lake sturgeon catch still controversial", "How Non-Native Shrimp Transformed The Ecosystem at Montana's Flathead Lake", "Long-term effects of a trophic cascade in a large lake ecosystem", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, "Fall Mack Days starts this weekend at Flathead Lake", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Flathead_Lake&oldid=990034949, Articles containing Kalispel-Pend d'Oreille-language text, Articles using infobox body of water without alt, Articles using infobox body of water without image bathymetry, Articles with unsourced statements from March 2012, All articles with vague or ambiguous time, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Alt, David. The Polson Moraine, near present-day Polson, Montana, marks the southernmost extent of the glacier during the last ice age and thus is the site of the glacier's terminal moraine. Predation by Mysis has shifted zooplankton and phytoplankton community size structure. Flathead Lake was first described by explorer David Thompson as “A fine sheet of water”. Wild Horse Island is the largest at 2,164 acres (876 ha). It is larger in surface area than Lake Tahoe, but it is much smaller in volume due to Tahoe's depth. Bayesian change point analysis of primary productivity (27-y time series) showed a significant step increase of 55 mg C m−2 d−1 (i.e., 21% rise) concurrent with the mysid invasion, but little trend before or after despite increasing nutrient loading. [13], Fishermen had introduced lake trout 80 years prior but remained at low densities until the non-native Mysis became established. It’s that----and much more. Flathead Lake, especially in reducing the number of smaller lake trout (less than the slot limit of 30 inches). "The Making of Flathead Lake" in, This page was last edited on 22 November 2020, at 12:11. Flathead Lake is home to a number of native and non-native fishes, and is managed cooperatively by both Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes. The bottom-dwelling mysids eliminated a recruitment bottleneck for lake trout by providing a deep water source of food where little was available previously. It is a similar size as Minnesota's Mille Lacs Lake, but smaller than Red Lake. The lake trout in Flathead Lake can reach monstrous sizes, frequently exceeding twenty-pounds. Quick View. It is about half the area of San Francisco Bay (main bay). It is a similar size as Minnesota's Mille Lacs Lake, but smaller than Red Lake. During the last ice age this trench was filled by an enormous glacier. The lake trout on Flathead Lake average around eight pounds, but many go well over 20. These islands cover 5.5 square miles (14 km2). Flathead Lake Flathead Lake, which is located in Northwest Montana, is the largest natural freshwater lake found west of the Mississippi River in the lower 48 states. With killer sizes of over 20lbs in some cases, the lake has varieties of huge fish such as a lake … In addition, CSKT and FWP encourage anglers to harvest yellow perch and lake whitefish, each of which have very liberal bag limits. There are several islands in the lake. When fishing, anglers can expect to catch a variety of fish including Black Bullhead, Lake Trout, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike, Rainbow Trout, Yellow Perch, Pumpkinseed and. Most moraine dammed lakes drain quickly because water cuts entirely through the moraine. [10] A common misconception is that the name is derived from a practice of head flattening more common among tribes such as the Chinook. Local residents have reported sighting other aquatic fauna in the lake as well, such as sturgeon and the Flathead Lake Monster. 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