Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Sabin (Embarrass Mine Pit)

Nearest Town: Aurora
Primary County: St. Louis
Survey Date: 06/11/2013
Inventory Number: 69042900

Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
Unknown Other
DNR Concrete Concrete ramp, north shore.

Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 156.08
Littoral Area (acres): 12.5
Maximum Depth (ft): 465
Water Clarity (ft): 33

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

Did you know? Spawning habitat improvements can enhance naturally reproducing populations of fish species such as walleye and northern pike.

Fish Sampled for the 2013 Survey Year


Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)


Normal Range

Bluegill Gill net 0.17 N/A 0.62 N/A
Hornyhead Chub Gill net 0.33 N/A 0.14 N/A
Lake Trout Gill net 6.67 0.8 - 4.3 1.31 1.2 - 3.1
White Sucker Gill net 3.17 1.7 - 5.0 0.92 1.6 - 2.4
Normal Ranges represent typical catches for lakes with similar physical and chemical characteristics.

Length of Selected Species (Trapnet, Gillnet) Sampled for the 2013 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
bluegill 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
hornyhead chub 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
lake trout 0 0 8 9 18 5 0 0 40
white sucker 0 5 7 3 3 1 0 0 19

For the record, the largest Shovelnose Sturgeon taken in Minnesota weighed 5 lbs., 9 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Mississippi River near Red Wing, Goodhue County
    When: 6/4/07
    Statistics: 36" length, 11 7/8" girth

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2015 Lake Herring (Cisco) adults 113 24.0
2010 Brook Trout yearlings 1,600 235.3
2009 Rainbow Trout yearlings 1,550 574.1
2008 Brook Trout yearlings 1,534 639.1
2007 Brook Trout yearlings 1,550 553.6
2006 Rainbow Trout yearlings 1,550 580.5

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

No fish consumption guidelines are available for this lake. For more information, see the "Fish Consumption Advice" pages at the Minnesota Department of Health.

Status of the Fishery (as of 06/11/2013)

Sabin Lake (69-0429) better known as Embarrass Mine Pit is a designated stream trout lake located two miles east of Biwabik. The access is via a steep concrete ramp in the middle of the lakes north shore. It is a 156 acre clear water lake with a maximum depth of 465 feet. This pit was originally operated from 1943 to 1964 as an iron ore mine. After abandonment, the mine was allowed to fill with water. There are no inlets or outlets and the mine walls are generally very steep with some sloughing gravel areas.

On June 6, 2013 the water temperature ranged from 62 F at the surface to 38 F at 100 feet. Oxygen levels were good throughout the entire measured water column. This population assessment consisted of three shallow gillnet, three deep gillnet, and no trapnet sets.

From 1984 to 2010 various sizes and strains of rainbow trout, brook trout, lake trout, and even Atlantic salmon were stocked. Lake trout adults were only stocked in 1984 and 1985. After 1985, only rainbow trout and brook trout have been stocked. From 1990 to 2010, rainbows and brookies were stocked in alternating years.

The shallow gillnet catch rate for all fish combined was 16.7 fish/net which is slightly higher than the historical average for the lake. The deep gillnet catch rate for all fish combined was 4.0 fish/net which is below the historical average for the lake. Only four fish species were sampled: lake trout, white sucker, bluegill, and a chub species.

A total of 40 lake trout were sampled between all the nets. A catch rate of 9.7 fish/net in the shallow sets is the highest catch on record. The catch rate for deep nets was 3.7 fish/net which is just below the average of 4.1 fish/net. Average lengths were 16.0 inches for shallow caught fish and 14.0 inches for deep caught fish. Maximum lengths were 20.5 and 20.0 inches respectively. Average weights per fish were 1.4 and 1.0 pounds for shallow and deep caught fish. Ages ranged from 8 to over 15 years with the 2000 and 2005 year classes contributing heavily to the population.

Eighteen white suckers were captured in shallow sets for a catch rate of 6.0 fish/shallow gillnet. This rate is bested only by the 2000 survey which had 12.7 fish/net. Lengths ranged from 6.0 to 20.5 inches with an average of 12.0 inches. Sizes have remained similar throughout the historical netting.

One bluegill was sampled in the shallow nets and was nearly 9.0 inches long.

For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
650 Hwy 169
Tower, MN 55790
Phone: (218) 753-2580
Internet: Tower 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 C0746 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