Last year, the Idaho Fish and Game began a fun fishing challenge at Lake Pend Oreille with the $50,000 walleye lottery. They had stocked the lake with special walleye with microscopic tags in their noses containing information for winning money. Some fish were worth $1,000 and all other fish were worth an entry to win $100. None of the thousand dollar fish were caught last year so the Idaho Fish and Game is hoping to make the game better in 2020 by increasing the number of thousand dollar fish. Last year, anglers took home nearly $9,000 in prize money.

Walleye are predator fish and not native to the area. The fishing lottery helps Fish and Game keep walleye numbers low in an effort to maintain the kokanee and rainbow trout populations while also being a research tool. Rules for the walleye lottery can be found on the Idaho Fish and Game website.  They have also posted information gathered from the previous season to help visitors know where the fish were caught and at what time of the year they were caught.

Fishing Lake Pend Oreille isn't a day trip for us in Southern Idaho. The lake is in the northern panhandle region of Idaho and a solid 11 hour drive to get there. In addition to the walleye incentive fishing, any lake trout caught at Lake Pend Oreille or in its tributaries are worth a $15 reward.

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