Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Dumbbell (Dumbell)

Nearest Town: Isabella
Primary County: Lake
Survey Date: 08/10/2009
Inventory Number: 38039300
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
US Forest Service Carry-In Airplane dock and accessible fishing pier.
US Forest Service Concrete West side off of USFS Road #172.

Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 406.1
Littoral Area (acres): 202
Maximum Depth (ft): 40
Water Clarity (ft): 9.0 (7.2-12)

Dominant Bottom Substrate: N/A
Abundance of Aquatic Plants: N/A
Maximum Depth of Plant Growth (ft): N/A

Did you know? Habitat acquisition of lands next to lakes and streams protects spawning areas and shoreline vegetation, and it increases access to fishing waters.

Fish Sampled for the 2009 Survey Year


Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)


Normal Range

Muskellunge Trap net 0.33 0.5 - 0.8 5.87 4.6 - 4.8
Gill net 1.88 1.7 - 5.4 5.96 2.9 - 4.4
Rock Bass Trap net 2.67 0.5 - 1.8 0.13 0.2 - 0.3
Gill net 7.62 0.5 - 2.2 0.20 0.2 - 0.4
Smallmouth Bass Trap net 0.44 0.2 - 0.7 0.13 0.3 - 0.6
Gill net 1.00 0.5 - 2.1 0.16 0.5 - 1.4
Walleye Gill net 16.12 2.0 - 9.7 0.61 0.8 - 2.0
White Sucker Trap net 0.22 0.2 - 0.9 0.74 1.4 - 3.0
Gill net 0.88 2.3 - 8.7 0.60 1.5 - 2.2
Yellow Perch Trap net 1.11 0.3 - 2.5 0.11 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 9.00 1.7 - 14.1 0.11 0.1 - 0.2
Normal Ranges represent typical catches for lakes with similar physical and chemical characteristics.

Length of Selected Species (Trapnet, Gillnet) Sampled for the 2009 Survey Year

Species Number of fish caught in each category (inches)
0-5 6-8 9-11 12-14 15-19 20-24 25-29 30+ Total
muskellunge 0 0 0 0 1 0 7 10 18
rock bass 47 38 0 0 0 0 0 0 85
smallmouth bass 4 8 0 0 0 0 0 0 12
walleye 0 20 76 20 9 3 1 0 129
white sucker 0 1 5 3 0 0 0 0 9
yellow perch 43 39 0 0 0 0 0 0 82

For the record, the largest Black Bullhead taken in Minnesota weighed 3 lb., 13.12 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Reno Lake, Pope County
    When: 6/8/97
    Statistics: 17.17" length, 14.96" girth

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2015 Walleye fry 500,000 4.7
2012 Splake fingerlings 0 0.0
  Walleye fry 500,000 5.0
2011 Walleye fry 500,000 4.5
2010 Brook Trout fingerlings 2,867 65.0
2008 Walleye fry 550,000 5.5
2007 Walleye fry 250,000 2.5

Stocking Notes
1 - indicates fish purchased and stocked by private citizens and sporting groups.
2 - indicates fish purchased by the DNR for stocking.

Stocking Fish Sizes
Fry - Newly hatched fish that are ready to be stocked usually called "swim-ups". Walleye fry are 1/3 of an inch or around 8 mm.
Fingerling - Fingerlings are one to six months old and can range from a size of one to twelve inches depending on the species. Walleye fingerlings range from three to eight inches each fall.
Yearling - Yearling fish are at least one year old. A one-year-old fish can range from three to twenty inches depending on the species. Walleye yearlings average from six to twelve inches.
Adult - Adult fish are fish that have reached maturity. Depending on the species, maturity can be reached at two years of age. Walleye reach maturity between the ages of four and six years.

Fish Consumption Guidelines

These fish consumption guidelines help people make choices about which fish to eat and how often. Following the guidelines enables people to reduce their exposure to contaminants while still enjoying the many benefits from fish.

Pregnant Women, Women who may become pregnant and Children under age 15

County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
Lake Co., 38039300
Walleye   shorter than 16" 16" or longer   Mercury
White Sucker   All sizes     Mercury
Yellow Perch   All sizes     Mercury

General Population

County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
Lake Co., 38039300
Walleye   All sizes     Mercury
White Sucker All sizes        
Yellow Perch All sizes        

DOWID - MN DNR, Division of Waters' lake ID number.

Contaminants listed were measured at levels that trigger advice to limit consumption.

Listing of consumption guidelines do not imply the fish are legal to keep, MN DNR fishing regulations should be consulted.

PCBS - Polychlorinated biphenyls
PFOS - Perfluorooctane sulfanate

Status of the Fishery (as of 08/10/2009)

Walleye numbers sampled in Dumbbell Lake in 2009 were well above average for the lake class, similar to results in previous investigations. The average length was 11.1 inches with 14% of the catch greater than 14 inches. A large sample of young (ages 2 and 3) walleyes reduced the average length calculated from the total catch. Since changing the walleye fry stocking regimen in 1999, two consecutive years out of four years, the stocking blanks have indicated significant natural reproduction supporting the adult walleye population. Dumbbell Lake is a structure anglers dream with many offshore reefs and humps dropping sharply into deep water.

Muskellunge numbers were above average for the lake class with an average length of 30.1 inches. The largest musky sampled was 37.5 inches in this assessment, although two 40+ inch muskellunge were measured in the spring 2009 trap net assessment. Population assessment data indicated natural reproduction was sufficient to maintain the musky fishery. Dumbbell Lake is known as a good musky fishing lake with many fish in the 4 to 8 pound range available for fast action, although legal length muskellunge are rare.

Average numbers of small (average length of 6.7 inches) smallmouth bass were present in the 2009 population assessment. However, bass populations are difficult to assess in standard survey nets and anglers using live bait (especially crawlers and leeches) will find there are ample smallmouth bass in Dumbbell Lake.

Above average numbers of small sized (average length of 6.2 inches) yellow perch were also sampled with rock bass, white sucker and four minnow species completing the species list sampled in the 2009 assessment.

The primary public access to Dumbbell Lake is a concrete ramp on the west side of the lake, off of USFS Road #172, with parking for eight vehicles. A second access site on the south shore, along USFS #172, is a loop road with a USFS airplane dock and accessible fishing pier; there is parking for a few vehicles. There are a couple of unmarked boulders, offshore just below the lake surface, in both basins of Dumbbell Lake that should be avoided by watercraft. A contour map of the lake bottom would benefit the angler and navigator on Dumbbell Lake.

For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
PO Box 546
6686 Hwy 1
Finland, MN 55603
Phone: (218) 353-8840
Internet: Finland Fisheries

Lake maps can be obtained from:

Minnesota Bookstore
660 Olive Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
(651) 297-3000 or (800) 657-3757
To order, use B0457 for the map-id.

For general DNR Information, contact:

DNR Information Center
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155-4040
TDD: (651) 296-6157 or (888) MINNDNR

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    Toll-free: (800) 652-9093