When you think of Lake Tahoe many things come to mind:
- Beautiful Scenery
- Snow Covered Mountains
- NightLife and Fine Dining
…… and yes, Mackinaw. Now if you are not familiar with the word Mackinaw then you are either not a fishermen or you are not a fishermen from the West Coast or Great Lakes. Mackinaw is a species of trout that live in the deeper waters of many of the larger lakes on the West Coast of the United States and Canada.
Lake Tahoe Mackinaw average just about 10 pounds but fish into the 20 and 30 pound range is a common occurrence. The world record Mackinaw was caught in 1995 and went a whopping 72 pounds.
Mackinaw can be legally caught in Lake Tahoe 12 months out of the year and because Lake Tahoe does not freeze over the fishing waters are always available. Depending on the time of year you may be fishing in parkas or shorts and flip flops, but no matter what the weather conditions, there are always fish to catch.
Other Names For Lake Tahoe MACKINAW
The definition of Makanaw is “Dweller Of The Deep” but Mackinaw also go by many other names including:
- Lake Trout
- Lake Char
- Grey Trout
In the Great Lakes Mackinaw are also called Siscowet, Paperbelly and Lean Trout.
LAKE TAHOE MACKINAW Is Delicious
Mackinaw are part of the Char family which is a very hearty species of fish. In the Northern regions of Canada Mackinaw are caught by ice fishermen when they lakes they fish are completely frozen over.
Fresh Lake Trout is considered a delicacy and can be prepared in many different ways. Baked, Grilled, Poached, Fried and even smoked. Any way you prepare them Mackinaw are delicious. There are also a number of places around Lake Tahoe that will prepare your catch for you if you wish. What a great way to end a day fishing then having someone prepare the fish you just caught.
Expecting to catch Mackinaw off the banks of the lake tends to be not very rewarding. Remember that their name means Dweller of the Deep, and that is where you are going to find them. 99% of the fish caught are from a boat and the majority of those are caught off the local charter boats.
Lake Tahoe is a huge Alpine Lake, in fact it is almost exactly the size of the entire island of Guam. Although there are hundreds of thousands of fish in Lake Tahoe, they have many places to hide, that is why hiring a Charter with a knowledgeable captain is a key to success. Many Charter Captains fish the lake 12 months out of the year, they know where fish like to bunch up it different types of weather and have knowledge of the underwater shelves and pockets that are deep enough to hold Lake Trout.
Equipment needed to catch LAKE TAHOE MAcKiNAW
The equipment you will need to be successful in catching Mackinaw are:
- A good depth finder
- Downriggers with various cannon ball weights
- Rods and Reels capable of pulling in large fish from deep waters
- Big net
- Plenty of tackle for both trolling and jigging
- A larger cooler to put your catch
Tackle can be found at the various sporting goods stores located on Lake Tahoe. You may also want to stock up on gear for Rainbow Trout, Brown Trout and Kokanee Salmon depending on the time of the year you are fishing. (If you are going out with a Charter there is no need to bring tackle or gear because they have all you need on board.)
Some of the tackle you may want to pickup is:
- Shortbus Flashers in various sizes and colors
- Jigs and lures from Brads Tackle
- Line Counter Reels from Avet
They say practice makes perfect and that is especially true when fishing for Mackinaws. You need to become a student of not only the fish itself but the waters you will be fishing, and the equipment and tackle you use. In the beginning you will be experimenting a lot and there will be a lot of time between fish, but as your experience and knowledge grows so will your success rate.