Kraut Lake has been managed for stream trout since 2004. It is one of the "trophy trout" lakes in the Grand Marais area. As such, it is closed to winter fishing. During the open water season only catch-and-release fishing is allowed. Anglers must use artificial lures and flies only, with a single hook only, with no bait allowed. The current (2010) lake management plan established a long term goal for brook trout of a minimum gill net catch of 6.0 fish/set, with some fish over 16 inches present, with the lake supporting low to moderate fishing pressure.
This was the first fish population assessment completed on this lake since brook trout were introduced. Only one angling report on the lake has been received since 2004; that party, reporting in July 2011, caught no fish and saw no activity from fish on the lake. There has been no noticeable use of potential access routes, even when they have been flagged by Fisheries crews. It seems unlikely that the goal of supporting low to moderate fishing pressure has been met to date.
The temperature-oxygen profile measured on 22 August 2014 found ideal conditions for brook trout (temperature < 68 F, oxygen > 5 ppm) from the surface to a depth of about 11 feet. Since the summer of 2014 was relatively cool, this may have represented a best-case scenario for late summer conditions in this lake. A profile measured on 15 August 2007 found no waters cooler than 69 F with oxygen exceeding 5 ppm.
It appeared that catch and size goals for this lake were met in 2014. Although only one gill net set was made, brook trout seemed to have been abundant and large. Fifteen brook trout, 13.6 to 18.1 inches long, were collected. All fish taken in 2014 were apparently survivors of the 2011 and 2012 fingerling stockings. Growth of those fish was apparently fast, compared to area averages. Three-year-old fish reached a mean length of 14.1 inches by the end of their third year, compared to an area average of 12.5 inches. Fish stocked in 2011 and 2012 were a new strain (Minnesota Wild), and performance of those fish appeared to have been very good.
No other fish species were sampled in 2014. The initial (2000) survey of this lake collected brook stickleback, fathead minnow, and northern redbelly dace in minnow traps, and captured no fish in gill net sets.